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Sinn Féin secure Equality Commission victory over Lisburn Council Flag Policy

4 July, 2006

Lagan Valley Sinn Féin Councillor Paul Butler has welcomed the Equality Commission decision to uphold his complaint against Lisburn Council and censor the body for its insistence on flying the Union Jack 365 days each years from Council premises.

Cllr. Butler said:

"When I took this complaint to the Equality Commission I believed strongly that I was on sound legal ground. The decision by Lisburn Council to ignore equality provisions and insist on flying the Union Jack 365 days each year and not simply on designated days was in my view simply not sustainable.

"The decision by the Equality Commission today vindicates entirely the approach adopted by myself and the other Sinn Féin councillors in Lisburn and places very much in public dock the manner in which the DUP in particular have approached civic matters in the borough.

"Lisburn Council need now to act immediately and remove the Union Jack from Council buildings. If they do not I will not hesitate in taking further legal action. The days of nationalists and republicans lying down and accepting unionist domination are over. The DUP would do well to wake up to this reality.

"This decision will also I believe have serious implications for many other local councils in the six counties who continue to wilfully ignore equality provisions regarding the display of flags and emblems." ENDS

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