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Sinn Fein demand concrete commitments to address Strabane job loses

25 February, 2004

Sinn Féin West Tyrone MP Pat Doherty has said that NIO Minster Ian Pearson must produce concrete proposals to address the job loses in Strabane and the long-term problem of unemployment.

Mr Doherty said:

"Strabane has the highest level of unemployment in the Six Counties. The job loses announced at Herdmans comes as a huge blow to the area.

"Ian Pearson must come forward with concrete proposals to address these problems. This requires commitment and it requires resources. Paper commitments are not good enough. People here in Strabane do not want to see a direct rule minister simply go through the motions they want to see concrete commitments to deal with these problems.

"A Taskforce should be established at the earliest opportunity that examines the wider issues of investment in infrastructure, on how we bring investment and jobs into the area and on who we tackle the twin problems of high unemployment and the need to develop the skills base of the local workforce." ENDS

Note to Editors

Pat Doherty led a delegation including members of Strabane District Council and local MLAs to meet Ian Pearson today at the Headquarters of DETI.

Pat Doherty will meet Invest NI tomorrow at 11.30 am in their Belfast City Centre Headquarters to discuss a strategy to bring jobs to the North West.

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