UP Manifesto Launch 28th February 2017
The Principles of Loyalism written by the late Billy Mitchell in 2002, setting out the values upon which the Progressive Unionist Party is founded could not be more relevant than they are today, speaking of mutual respect, shared responsibility, equality and social justice.
Stormont has become totally dysfunctional; the two largest parties have retreated into cultural and sectarian warfare; public confidence is at an all time low and public anger on the doorsteps is palpable.
We simply cannot keep doing what we always have done.
We face major socio-economic challenges-
• The Health Service is in crisis
• The education system is still failing far too many of our children
• Housing waiting lists are escalating
• On legacy issues we have procrastinated too long to the detriment of victims and survivors
And we still have no agreed budget for the government.
These challenges are solvable if there was the political will and cooperation to address them- but not if we continue to play party politics. They need long term action plans, something which until now seems beyond the parties in Stormont.
This manifesto sets out proposals and priorities that can make a real difference to people’s lives; that address important inequalities and injustices; policies in regard to fuel poverty, educational underachievement, suicide prevention and care for those with mental health problems.
These are policies that will support economic growth and help prepare young people for employment.
These are issues that are important for all communities and which demand cross community action.
Successful communities are created when every citizen feels valued and is able to make his or her contribution. A sense of pride and ownership is engendered, a creative synergy occurs resulting in a sense of belonging.
This party represents a voice for Loyalism, brings a focus on social justice and equality and is committed, in the words of the Good Friday Agreement,
‘to partnership equality and cultural respect as the basis of relationships within Northern Ireland.’
Stormont needs new faces, new ideas, new approaches. We are asking the electorate to put their faith in the PUP and to elect us to help create a much needed culture of transparency, integrity and accountability in government.