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Sinn Féin to seek Stormont shake-up

29 May, 2008

Sinn Féin Assembly member Barry McElduff has said that there needs to be a shake-up in the balance of symbols in the Stormont estate after the Assembly Commission revealed the inventory of symbols and emblems in the Stormont Assembly estate.

Mr McElduff said:

"We need to create a more inclusive environment at Stormont for staff, elected members and the public.

"The institutions are about power sharing and the equal recognition of all traditions. Yet, this inventory of the symbols and emblems on display (or in storage) in the Stormont Assembly estate highlight the need for an equality shake up.

"Clearly there is not enough - particularly of the 'grand' nature - symbolism to reflect either the range of traditions that exists side by side on this island or indeed the new relationships and political dispensation.

"I believe that we should take advice from the Equality Commission, who have experience of dealing with these issues at local government. I also believe there is scope for a sub-committee or Ad hoc committee to look at how we make progress.

"There is also the issue of flags.

"But Sinn Féin are not interested in ripping down unionists symbols or tearing down the statue of Carson, we want to create an environment which reflects the nature of the Assembly and our society in the 21st century. This means that we need to bring in more symbols that reflect the nationalist and republican traditions; as well as other items from different cultural backgrounds.

"The Assembly building should not reflect an image of domination of one culture by another." ENDS

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