Bookmark and Share
16/06/2017

Equality Commission To Investigate Irish Language Bursary Scheme Decision

The Equality Commission has confirmed it is to carry out an investigation following a decision by the Department of Communities to withdraw funding from an Irish language bursary scheme.

Around £50,000 funding was withdrawn from the Líofa Gaeltacht Bursary Scheme, which offers Irish language scholarships to young people, however it has now been reversed.

DUP MLA Paul given was Communities Minister at the time.

A report will be issued when the investigation has been concluded.

Sinn Féin MLA Declan Kearney said: "The scrapping of the Líofa scheme was an appalling decision and contributed significantly towards the collapse of power-sharing as it was widely seen within the nationalist community as a blatant sectarian and cynical act.
News Image
"Similarly, the operation of the £1.9m Community Halls scheme has raised widespread public concern, given that the vast majority of the beneficiaries were from the unionist tradition. 

"I have previously addressed this matter and pointed at real concerns which exist regarding the practice of institutionalised bigotry directing public policy and disbursal of public funds.

"There needs to be integrity in government.

"The public needs to have confidence that public money is allocated fairly and on the basis of need not creed. 

"It is essential that public policy and the direction of funds and resources are based upon objective need criteria. This investigation is a very important process to ensure transparency and accountability are brought to bear on how these decisions have been made."

(CD)


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

27 June 2017
Decision To Cut Nurses Budgets Reversed
The Department of Health has reversed its decision to cut nurses training budgets. SDLP Health Spokesperson Mark H Durkan MLA welcomed the decision and said the "fiasco underscored the urgent need to re-establish powersharing with directly accountable Ministers".
13 June 2017
Investigation Launched After Man Dies Suddenly At Fast Food Outlet
Police have launched an investigation following the sudden death of a man at a fast food restaurant in north Belfast. The man's body was discovered in the bathroom area of the premises on Brougham Street on Monday, 12 June. The restaurant closed on Monday, however it is to re-open today, 13 June. No further details have been released.
13 June 2017
Investigation Launched Over Fire At Co Antrim Flat
Police have launched an investigation following a fire at a flat in Co Antrim. The incident, which is believed to have been started deliberately, happened in the Arran Street area on Tuesday, 13 June. Emergency services attended the scene and put out the blaze. No-one was in the property at the time.
12 June 2017
Investigation Launched After Racial Abuse Incident In Belfast
Police have launched an investigation following reports a woman shouted racial abuse at three females in Belfast city centre. The women were sitting on a bench in the Donegall Square West area on Saturday, 10 June, when the incident happened.
16 February 2012
Minister Announces Start Of £400,000 Public Realm Scheme
Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland has announced that work is due to start on a £400,000 Public Realm scheme in Londonderry. The appointed contractor, Whitemountain, is due to begin work on Queens Quay later this month.
14 March 2014
Finance Minister Warns On Future Public Spending
Finance Minister Simon Hamilton has said the next number of years in Northern Ireland will "eclipse even the last four years of austerity.
18 January 2011
Political Donors' Identities Remain Protected
The individuals and companies behind party political donations in NI are to remain 'secret'. The Northern Ireland Office (NIO) said on Monday that the deteriorating security situation meant donors still needed to be protected.
23 November 2004
Spellar calls for views on licensing laws in NI
Any changes to the licensing laws in Northern Ireland will aim to strike a balance between facilitating the sale of alcohol, public safety and the public interest. This is according to Minister for Social Development, John Spellar who was speaking last night at the Federation of the Retail Licensed Trade’s annual ball at the Europa Hotel.
01 December 2003
Public services need greater accountability
A wide-ranging survey of views on public services in Northern Ireland has revealed that the general public believes that there needs to be greater accountability in the current system. The findings were included in a research report published today by the Review of Public Administration (RPA).
20 June 2017
Call For Work To Be Done To Address Housing Inequalities In NI
Work still needs to be done to address housing inequalities in Northern Ireland, according to the Equality Commission. It published a 'Statement on Key Inequalities in Housing and Communities in Northern Ireland' which draws on a wide range of sources and highlights seven areas where the Commission considers key inequalities persist.
20 June 2017
Talks To Restore Power Sharing In NI To Continue
Discussions to restore power sharing in Northern Ireland are to continue today, 20 June. The government has given the parties a discussion paper setting out key areas for agreement and they have been given until this afternoon to respond.
06 June 2017
Police Appeal to Help Find Stolen Star Trek Cards
Police have issued an appeal to help trace 3,800 Star Trek trading cards of "quite high value". The cards were stolen from a property in L'Derry on Monday, 05 June. On a Facebook post a PSNI spokesperson said: "A burglary has occurred in the city and approx 3800 Star Trek trading cards were stolen and these have quite a high value.
20 June 2012
Public Inquiry Into Ballymena Road Project
Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy today announced his decision to hold a Public Inquiry into a controversial widening project on the A26 near Ballymena.
01 December 2011
Irish Language 'Special Needs' In Focus
There has been high-level encouragement for continuing work on teaching special needs in the Irish medium. At a conference on special educational needs this week, partnerships across all sectors were hailed as being central to meeting the needs of all children with special needs.
14 March 2013
Low Paid Staff In Education Sector To Receive £250
Education Minister, John O'Dowd, has made funding available to allow payments of £250 to be made to low paid staff in the education sector. The payments, for staff earning less than £21,000 a year, reflected the decision across the public sector to provide additional payments to low paid staff at a time when a pay freeze was effective.