Sinn Féin - On Your Side

Sinn Fein announce details of International Anti-Poverty Conference

14 October, 2005

Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Poverty, North Belfast MLA Kathy Stanton has
announced the details of an International Anti-Poverty Conference
organised by the party for Thursday 20th October in North Belfast.

Over 1,000 groups, agencies and individuals from throughout Ireland have
been invited to attend Sinn Fein's all-Ireland Anti-Poverty Conference -
'End Poverty North and South - Local and Global'. Speakers include Prof
Paddy Hillyard, Gabriele Zimmer MEP, author Mark Curtis, Prof Denis
O'Hearn, journalist Michael McCaughan, Caitriona Ruane MLA, Prof Sam
Porter, Shell to Sea Campaign representative Maire Ní Seighin and AT&GWU
Regional Secretary Mick O'Reilly.

Speaking ahead of the event Ms Stanton said:

"Make no mistake poverty kills. Every day the gap between the rich and the
poor gets greater. Every week thousands die and have their lives blighted
by poverty. It is not that we lack the resources to eradicate poverty. The
truth is that there is no political will to make the eradication of
poverty a priority. We need to make it a priority.

"Daily there is further evidence of the true extent of poverty here in
Ireland and across the world. Behind each statistic is the daily
experience of families, older people and children - the most vulnerable in
our society, who are struggling against endemic poverty. Yet each and
every response from government is completely inadequate.

"The purpose of the conference is to develop an effective and integral
anti-poverty campaigning policy because tackling poverty will only become
a priority if people demand action and demand change.

"Essentially we want to demonstrate how relevant the global campaign
against poverty is to the local battles that we face. By bringing together
key actors in the field together in one of the most deprived areas of
Ireland, we want to provide an opportunity in which Sinn Féin campaigns
and policy can be influenced in the interests of a coherent and effective
anti-poverty strategy." ENDS

Details of 'End Poverty North and South - Local and Global' Conference

Date: Thursday 20th October 2005
Time: 9.00am - 4.45pm
Venue: St Kevin's Hall, North Queen Street, Belfast

Conference Programme

9.00am Tea/Coffee Registration

9.15am Setting the context; Kathy Stanton, MLA

9.30am Welcome from Gerry Kelly MLA

9.45am - 11.15am Chair Bairbre de Brún MEP

9.45am Prof Paddy Hillyard - Poverty in Ireland

Paddy Hillyard is Professor of Sociology at Queen's University Belfast.
Prior to moving to Queen's, he was Professor of Social Policy and
Administration at the University of Ulster. He co-ordinated the NI Poverty
and Social Exclusion Survey in 2002/2003. He is currently working on a
project entitled 'Re-imagining Women's Security in Post Conflict

10.15am Gabriele Zimmer MEP - Poverty, the EU and the Neo-Liberal Economic

Gabriele Zimmer is Member of the European Parliament for the German
Democratic Socialist Party (PDS) and a member of the European United
Left/Nordic Green Left - GUI/NGL group.  She served as PDS Vice Chair from
1996-2000 and Chair from 2000-2003.  She currently sits on the EU
Parliament's Committee on Employment and Social Affairs

10.45am Mark Curtis - Global Poverty in Context

Mark Curtis is author of Unpeople: Britain's Secret Human Rights Abuses
and Web of Deceit: Britain's Real Role in the World. He was until recently
Director of the World Development Movement, and has been head of policy at
Christian Aid and ActionAid and a research fellow at the Royal Institute
of International Affairs.

11.15 - 11.30 Break

11.30 - 12.30pm Opportunities to Fight Back - Global Case Studies Chair
Aengus O'Snodaigh TD

11.30am Prof. Denis O'Hearn - Combating Poverty in Latin America

Denis O'Hearn is jointly Professor of Social and Economic Change at Queens
University Belfast and Professor of Sociology at the University of
Binghamton, New York. Nation Books of New York will publish his
forthcoming biography of Bobby Sands, Nothing But an Unfinished Song, in
January 2006. He recently spent time living in a Zapatista community in
Chiapas, Latin America.

12.00 Michael McCaughan - Venezuela - The Bolivarian Movement

Michael McCaughan is an independent journalist who has lived and worked in
Latin America for the past 18 years. New York Publisher Seven Stories has
just released his latest book, 'Battle of Venezuela' which will be
available at the conference

12.30 - 1.00pm Questions and Answers and Panel discussion - Mark Curtis,
Michael McCaughan

1.00 - 1.30pm: Lunch

1.30-3.00pm Opportunities to Fight Back in Ireland Chair Mary Lou McDonald

1.30pm Caitriona Ruane MLA - Opportunities to Fight Poverty in the Good
Friday Agreement

Caitriona Ruane is Sinn Féin's South Down MLA, Human rights and Equality
spokesperson and Director of Céad Bliain. She worked in Central America
from 1983-1987, on human rights and development and championed the cause
of the Colombia Three.

1.50pm Prof. Sam Porter - Poverty and the Potential of All Ireland
Economic Development

Sam Porter is a research professor in the School of Nursing at Queen's
University, Belfast, and also contributes to Sinn Féin's Policy Review and
Development Department, especially in the area of health.

2.10pm Maire Ní Seighin - Community Campaigns against Privatisation

Maire Ní Seighin is a representative for the Shell to Sea Campaign, which
is campaigning on behalf of the Rossport Five, imprisoned because of their
stand against Shell Oil's plans to run pipelines through their community
against the wishes of the local people.

2.30pm Mick O'Reilly - Trade Union Campaigns against Privatisation

Mick O'Reilly has been a full time official for the AT&GWU since 1977 and
currently holds the position of Regional Secretary. He is a member of the
Executive Council of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions.

3.00pm - 3.15pm Break

3.15pm - 4.00pm Workshops
· Anti-Poverty Strategies: Targeting Social Need
· Health: Funding, Inequalities and Health Promotion
· Housing: Social need, privately rented sector
· Education: Privatisation, cuts and inequality
· Child Poverty: Pre-schooling, Childcare; Privatisation and social need
· Poverty and Minority Ethnic Communities
· Water and Basic Necessities
· Fuel Poverty: Privatisation of Energy, nationalisation oil, gas,
· The Poverty of Division: Sectarianism and Racism

(Feedback from workshops will go into the Conference Report)

4.00pm Plenary: 'Where do we go from here?' - Proposals for Action Chair
Conor Murphy MP

4.45pm Conference Ends - Kathy Stanton MLA

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