Workers Party representative Chris Bailie has slammed the DUP and Sinn Fein after it was revealed that three parts of the Oldpark ward feature in the top seven areas of multiple deprivation in Northern Ireland.
The research carried out by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) shows that parts of the Waterworks , Ardoyne and New Lodge areas are amongst the most deprived in Northern Ireland in terms of employment levels, household income, access to services and a number of other important indicators.
“What exactly has the DUP and Sinn Fein, in particular, been doing to improve the opportunities and quality of life for local people?”, Chris asked. “Not only have they failed to form a functioning Executive they have also consistently failed the people of these areas”, he said
“They have failed to bring long-term sustainable jobs, they have failed to raise the educational standards of local schools and they have failed to bring forward measures to improve local health and well-being. Their record is a disgrace and local people and their families continue to suffer the consequences”, Chris added.
“The posturing and rhetoric of both these main parties means only further hardship, lack of opportunity and misery for people in this area. While MLAs continue to draw their salaries from a non existent Assembly they are quite happy to watch over yet another generation of young people denied the chance to achieve educationally, work in secure employment, have access to public services and live in a healthy environment”.
“Both the DUP and Sinn Fein cling doggedly to the principles of the free market economy and the erosion of public services. Their concerns are with maintaining their own sectarian camps while the people of the Waterworks, Ardoyne and New Lodge pay the price” said Chris.
“The longer these parties, and those like them, have control over our lives, our economy and our futures the worse conditions will get”. Chris concluded