In the north of Ireland, Sinn Fein blocked the Welfare Bill and the cuts that the Tories demanded we impose on the most vulnerable.
The response from the Tories has been as predictable as it has been reckless. Their ideological attachment to their Thatcherite agenda is such that they are willing to jeopardise the very future of the power-sharing institutions of the Good Friday agreement in order to pursue it.
Those institutions - which have underpinned the peace process for almost two decades - are now on endangered because of Tory recklessness.
It would seem that, unless we acquiesce to their demands to target the most vulnerable and decimate public services, they are prepared to see the power-sharing administration collapse.
But we will not allow the institutions – or our party – to become a proxy for a disastrous and counter-productive agenda.
There is an alternative.
The alternative is investment and growth, equality and prosperity, the safety net and the helping hand.
In the context of Ireland, the alternative is also in unity of the island. It is ludicrous at any time – but particularly at a time of economic crisis – for an island with a population of just 6 million people to have two economies developing back to back.
Two health systems, two education systems, two public sectors and all the duplication and waste that goes with that.
Sinn Féin is for equality and fairness, for prosperity and social justice across every aspect of life.
Sinn Féin will continue to defend the rights and entitlements of all minorities. We will continue to stand up for the most vulnerable in our society and demand and deliver a better future for our children.
We want to work constructively as part of a progressive alliance to achieve that.
The Westminster government are attempting to cut social welfare payments to children and adults with disabilities and the long term sick. This dossier demonstrates how in December 2014, at Stormont House, we secured agreement to protect the vulnerable and safeguard current and future claimants under the control of the Executive. This agreement was reneged upon by other parties. Sinn Féin continues to campaign against Tory cuts to social welfare in order to protect against poverty and in the interests of our local economy.
The Tory government’s austerity agenda is the single greatest threat to the people and political institutions of the North. In this 2015 Westminster Election Manifesto we set out our economic and social priorities.
Since 2007, successive Sinn Féin agriculture ministers have recognised the vital role of agriculture in the economic and community life of this island with our commitment to supporting all farmers and our rural citizens.
We continue to lead the way by delivering sustainability for our rural communities, viability for our family farms and developing basic services across rural Ireland.