Murphy responds to Brokenshire statement
Following today’s statement from the British Secretary of State, Sinn Féin MLA Conor Murphy said:
“The irony is not lost on us that James Brokenshire is making this announcement at the same time that his government is continuing to cut the block grant and pursue unrelenting austerity. The Tories want credit for helping ease cuts they were responsible for in the first place.
“Nevertheless, any additional assurance that allows money to be spent on front line services is a good thing.
“Recent disgraceful decisions such as the cut to school uniform grants should now be reversed and the Special Educational Needs budget protected. Significant investment should also be put into the transformative work required in the health department.
“So while it is good that today’s statement provides some clarity, the fact remains that spending priorities should be set by a credible, sustainable Executive and that is what Sinn Fein wants and is working for.
“The reason we don't have that is because the DUP, supported by James Brokenshire, have still not addressed the rights based issues which are preventing the establishment of an Executive.
“That is what needs to happen when the negotiations resume because recent history has shown that an Executive on the DUP's terms is no good for rights, no good for equality and no good for public services or the public purse given their various financial scandals and their support for Brexit and Tory austerity.”