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Sinn Fein will continue to push for progress in tackling discrimination against women

22 January, 2008

Sinn Féin Women spokesperson MLA Jennifer McCann has expressed her concerns that there was no specific mention of women as a group facing discrimination and inequality in today's budget announced by Finance Minister Peter Robinson.

Ms McCann said:

"I am disappointed that the Minister for Finance and Personnel did not take the opportunity today to specifically mention women as a specific group who face inequality and discrimination in the budget today.

"I expected the Budget Document to reflect the commitment which the Executive made in the Programme for Government (PfG) to tackling 'remaining gender inequalities' in society.

"This commitment was specifically written into the PfG at Sinn Féin's insistence and I intend to ensure that all departments honour it. The Executive rightly committed themselves in the PfG to implement the cross departmental Gender Equality Strategy and to work towards the total elimination of the gender pay gap.

"The Executive is also committed to ensuring that there are effective programmes and strategies aimed at eradicating all forms of violence against women and to ensuring an significant increase in women's representation in political and public life which will be helped by ensuring access to affordable quality childcare.

"While all these gains in the Programme for Government are welcome it is important that financial support and resources are made available to carry out these commitments. We intend to use the agreed mechanisms for delivering equality, including the Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) process." ENDS

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