Wed 1st Mar 2017
Northern Ireland business & civic society call for compromise and mutual respect
Business groups, civil leaders and the higher education sector have come together to urge the public and our politicians to fully support devolved government in Northern Ireland.
In a powerful open letter published on the eve of the election, an unprecedented coalition of business representative bodies, the voluntary sector and the higher education sector identify three specific “asks” for our politicians:
1. Deliver a power-sharing Devolved Government this month that works for all the people of Northern Ireland – that is what we all democratically voted for back in 1998 and that is what has since delivered peace and increasing prosperity to this region; and
2. Use these devolved power-sharing arrangement for the greater good – maintain the peace, compromise where necessary, show mutual respect and sensitivity to all communities, and work in partnership with business to deliver more economic prosperity for all; and
3. After this election, our devolved government must ensure that Northern Ireland’s economic, social and political interests are accurately and clearly represented at both the UK and European level seeking to ensure a the minimum level of disruption.
Given the immense changes that lie ahead as the United Kingdom leaves the European Union, the economic stakes for Northern Ireland are exceptionally high. This in turn has clear implications for the peace process.
The coalition believe that we all have a role to play in shaping the future of Northern Ireland – delivering peace and economic opportunity for future generations. Political participation through the electoral system is a responsibility all our citizens share whether young or old.
People across Northern Ireland deserve a government that works and represents their economic and social interests. We implore Northern Ireland citizens to be clear in their ambitions for the future of this region and make their voice and their values heard at the ballot box and represented in our future local government.