Thu 6th October
Speaking at the opening, she said: “Constituency offices are places of industry and compassion, two things that are very rarely mixed.
“A SDLP constituency office by its nature offers a very professional service to both the constituent and the agencies it works with. We look for high standards in output and case resolution, and this is the industrious side of our operations.
“The work of a constituency office is focused on better outcomes for individuals and communities. On a daily basis our representatives and offices deal with the human story, which in many cases, particularly in these difficult times requires compassion and understanding.
“So we have two sides to our constituency services, the industrious, professional operation and the human and compassionate side, both of which when combined are great examples of our social democratic credentials.
“In the current economic crisis, the SDLP is needed more than ever at local, Assembly and Westminster level. We have an Executive led by DUP/SF which is rolling over to Tory cuts. Now more than ever, the SDLP is needed to oppose these cuts and to stand up for the people of the North.
“The SDLP is about uniting the people of this island and building prosperity through exploring every opportunity for job creation.
“Yesterday we joined frontline health and education workers outside our hospitals and schools in protest at cuts to vital public services and were the only party in the Executive to object to plans to increase the pension contributions of low paid public sector workers.
“Earlier this year the SDLP said this budget was lazy and unimaginative, that it was a mistake that would not deliver for the people. We were criticised for this. Unfortunately there is now proof that we were right, that this budget was a mistake and public sector workers, education, health and a range of services throughout our communities are being butchered.
“It is therefore vital that the SDLP grow stronger in order the ensure that the next time we bring proposals such as these to the table we have more than one minister to see them through and government will be better as a result.
“Offices like this are key to ensuring that the role of the SDLP is strengthened within our communities and in turn strengthened at the ballot box.
“When the SDLP is strong the community is strong and when we win, communities win.”
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