The Alliance Party has published what it says should be the executive's strategy for creating a shared future in Northern Ireland. On Tuesday, the party launched For Everyone, The Alliance Party Blueprint For An Executive Strategy To Build A Shared and Better Future. It recommends a 20% reduction in peace line structures within ten years, with a further 30% removed within 15 years and mixed housing should be considered the norm in Northern Ireland by 2025.
Last May The Alliance party came under heavy criticism from SF and the DUP for actually pulling out of talks regards a shared future. David Ford accused the DUP and Sinn Fein of attempting to create "an illusion" that they were working towards a shared future and claimed the redevelopment plan for Girdwood in north Belfast would result in "further segregation of housing", prompting its walkout from the talks.
Peter Robinson who lost his Westminster seat to the Alliance's Naomi Long said, 'Throughout this process there has been political sniping by David Ford, along with no serious attempt by his party to achieve a shared agreement on good relations. When the Alliance party claims of being the party of consensus and finding agreement were tested, they failed'.
They also raised the 'F' word in its proposals.
Interestingly the party has called for legislation regards flags. Indeed going further and demanding nationalist controlled councils in the north fly the Union Flag on designated days. At least 10 councils refuse to fly the Union Flag. Perhaps it's a little too late to be appeasing the angry mob outside City Hall now Davy, but nice try. However, it's not all good news for Jamie and Willie, as it would stop unionist councils such as Lisburn voting to fly the Union Flag every day, imagine that. The document also set an aspiration to see at least one in every five children educated in an integrated school by 2020.
The document highlights four key areas:
Shared education and services for young people, including more integrated schools
Shared communities, including mixed housing as the norm and the removal of interfaces, with the support of communities
Shared culture for everyone, including a process for regulating parades
Shared approach to the past, including considering a new agency to deal with legacy issues
BBC News - Alliance Party publishes Northern Ireland shared future strategy