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Sinn Féin To Press British Government on Womens' Funding

20 December, 2005

Sinn Féin Spokesperson for Women and Older People, Pat O'Rawe MLA, is set to press the Direct Rule Minister for Social Development, David Hanson, on the funding crisis in the womens' sector.

Speaking before tomorrow's meeting at Stormont Castle, Ms O'Rawe said:

"Tomorrow, a strong  delegation of women, including myself and party colleague Kathy Stanton MLA, will meet the minister to emphasise the urgent need for mainstream funding of womens' organisations.  For far too long, successive direct rule ministers have used a stopgap approach to funding which has had negative effects on the invaluable services that womens' groups and organisations provide in training, in helping women back to work and in providing childcare and support."

"Our delegation," continued Ms O'Rawe, "also includes representatives from the womens' sector who will have the opportunity to challenge the minister directly on the British government's poor track record in providing adequate support and resources for women, particularly women in rural areas."

"Sinn Féin is totally committed to working at the highest levels in demanding that the British government faces up its responsibilities to ensure that women are no longer discriminated against.  We will be pressing the British government today to work, on a cross-departmental basis, to put in place a substantial mainstream funding package for the entire womens' sector". ENDS

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