SDLP Leader's Message
This election comes at a difficult time for people and communities across Northern Ireland. Energy prices and the cost of inflation are putting extreme pressures on household finances. The unforgivable absence of devolved government is preventing fair pay deals for public sector workers. And 25 years on from the Good Friday Agreement, it feels like politics here is stuck in reverse.
We were supposed to build a new kind of society together. One where everyone could aspire to a better life for themselves and their families. A new society where hard work could get you a good job with a fair wage, where you could buy your own home and make a life for yourself here, working to change this place for the better. That’s the future I believed in. It’s a future I still want to build.
Instead we have more peace walls. Our society has the longest hospital waiting lists on these islands. There are thousands of homeless families. Far too many kids are leaving school without the GCSE grades they need to be successful. And we’re paying the people who run our public services far too little. It doesn’t have to be like this.
The renewed mission of the SDLP is to end the politics of division that has held our people back for far too long and to work across our communities to build a new Ireland. We are focussed on creating a new, diverse and reconciled society that offers opportunity to everyone.
And that begins in local communities. We can’t hope to build a new, modern country if we don’t first get the basics right in your area.
This manifesto is a vision for community renewal built on three important pillars – creating great places to live, work and visit. It is filled with practical solutions to the common challenges every area faces and promises that the services delivered by your council will always offer value for money.
SDLP Councillors deliver for their communities. We have a strong record in local government because our party is powered by local representatives who care about the places they live and work in.
We are relentlessly focussed on how we transform health services to make sure everyone can get timely access to a local GP or hospital treatment when they need it. We’re tabling new plans to protect public services and public sector workers from more austerity budgets. We’re bringing forward bold new proposals to fund childcare for working parents so that everyone can raise a family and pursue a career if that’s what they want.
The SDLP works every day to build a future based on opportunity for everyone. If that’s what you believe in, then we need you to come out and support us on 18th May.
The people who will deliver our ambitious vision for the future will be known to you. They are hardworking SDLP candidates who are rooted in their communities and want to change this place for the better.