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Minister should restore funding for youth workers - Flynn

21 January, 2017


West Belfast Sinn Féin MLA Órlaithí Flynn has expressed her anger at the news that the DUP Education Minister, Peter Weir, has withdrawn funding to hundreds of youth worker posts across the North.

Ms Flynn’s colleague, Fra McCann MLA, has written to Peter Weir seeking an urgent meeting to discuss the funding withdrawal.

Ms Flynn said:

“Many youth groups have received letters stating that funding given under the Extended Provision Youth Work programme by former Sinn Féin Minister John O’Dowd is now being withdrawn by the DUP.

“This is another disgraceful decision by the DUP, coming so soon after the withdrawal of vital funding for Irish language bursaries for disadvantaged children under the Liofa scheme.

“The funding helped support additional youth work which allowed youth organisations to employ hundreds of workers to work in the most socially deprived communities across the North.

“I understand in Belfast alone this could impact on around 150 people who work in areas like the Falls and Divis, Lower Shankill, Clonard, Upper Springfield, Andersonstown, Twinbrook and Silverstream. There could be as many as 300 people losing their employment.

“This is an attack on working class communities and working class children.

“There is no doubt that this scheme has impacted positively on communities and young people's lives.

“Peter Weir needs to reverse his decision and end the DUP attacks on vulnerable communities”

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