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Councillor News

  • Michael Long
    3 PM Thursday
    Alliance has selected its Belfast candidates for the upcoming local Government election in May.

    Several sitting Councillors will be joined by new faces, all determined to increase Alliance's presence on Belfast City Council.

    Current Alliance Group Leader on the Council, Councillor Michael Long said:

    "Alliance's record on Belfast City Council is second to none. The party has led the charge for greater openness and transparency across the entire Council, giving ratepayers more scrutiny of their Council than has ever been seen before.

    "While the party holds the balance of power in the Council, an increase in Alliance elected representatives there via these candidates would ensure that open, positive politics will continue and Alliance will lead the way in helping create a diverse, inclusive city for all."

    Selected candidates:


    Kate Nicholl

  • Rachael Ferguson
    4 PM Tuesday
    Alliance has announced its latest candidate for Derry City and Strabane District Council.

    Rachael Ferguson will run for the party in the Faughan District Electoral Area in May's local government election. Rachael, who is involved with a number of local community groups and is co-founder of an online support group for mothers, said she was inspired to join the party and run

    "I have always been interested in local politics but felt my voice was not being represented. I noticed Alliance were working to get a continued presence back into the Derry-Londonderry area," she said.

    "The party's beliefs have always been close to my own, particularly around the importance of integrated education. With integration being a big part of my life, I knew Alliance was the party for me.

    "However, what spurred me to run was when the party recently announced some of its candidates for the local Council. The lack of a female representative spurred me to message Naomi Long about how to get involved in the party. Once I spoke to her, I felt empowered and knew I wanted to become a candidate. It was quite fitting it was on International Women's Day.

    "Being a young mother, I know first-hand not only the issues which matter to other parents and families but those which are important to everyone. From seeking funding for community groups to struggling for housing, from health waiting lists to fighting against the massive impact Brexit will have.

  • Nuala McAllister
    11 AM Sunday

    The Sinn Féin leader showed incredibly poor judgement by posing behind a banner emblazoned with 'England get out of Ireland,' Alliance Councillor Nuala McAllister has said.

    Mary Lou McDonald stood with the banner at the New York St Patrick's Day parade yesterday. Councillor McAllister said she should reflect on her actions and apologise.

    "This sort of banner has no place at any parade in 2019. Mary Lou McDonald showed incredibly poor judgement to pose behind it and she should apologise. Leaving aside the irony of St Patrick being a Briton, this sort of anti-English, anti-British sentiment is just as repulsive as anti-Irish, anti-immigrant prejudiced views - they are two sides of the same coin.

    "My term as Lord Mayor had its focus on 'Global Belfast', which showcased the city for the inclusive, diverse and welcoming place it is. As we speak, we have worldwide brands investing here, while we hold festivals marking all traditions and lead the digital revolution, all done in an open and inclusive atmosphere, while sharing and respecting different cultures.

    "This negative approach does nothing but send out a hostile and offensive message to anyone who does not fit Sinn Féin's clearly narrow vision. It is particularly jarring coming from a party which is quick to call for respect, equality and integrity at election time. You cannot claim to be all those things, yet happily pose behind a xenophobic banner which does nothing but offend and antagonise people."

  • Sorcha Eastwood4
    last Friday
    Alliance Castlereagh South representative Sorcha Eastwood has condemned those behind an armed robbery at a local shopping centre.

    Two masked men entered the Winemark at Carryduff Shopping Centre around 9:10pm yesterday (Thursday) before threatening a member of staff with a hammer, pushing him to the back of the store and making off with money and cigarettes.

    "I utterly condemn this incident and my thoughts are with the member of staff who went through this ordeal," said Ms Eastwood.

    "Thankfully the staff member was not injured but I hope they receive any help they need to recover from this experience.

  • David Armitage
    last Friday
    Alliance Councillor David Armitage has expressed his shock after police opened a murder investigation in East Belfast.

    Two men have been arrested following the death of a man in Kyle Street this morning.

    "My condolences are with the loved ones of the deceased at what must be an extremely sad time for them," said Councillor Armitage.

    "The local community is shocked by this incident. East Belfast has seen a number of deaths in recent weeks, which have caused great distress here.

  • Danny Donnelly
    last Wednesday
    Alliance Larne Lough representative Danny Donnelly has welcomed his party recently re-confirming its opposition to plans for underground gas storage caverns in the area.

    Danny was speaking after Alliance's recent Party Council meeting, in which a motion opposing the proposals and giving concerns about the environmental impact and public safety was backed by delegates.

    "Many questions remain unanswered about the plans for gas storage caverns and people across Mid and East Antrim are rightly concerned about what such a scheme could mean for the local area," said Danny.

    "Although Alliance has opposed this idea for many years, given how it has recently come to public prominence again, it was important to raise the matter and re-confirm our party's strong opposition, supporting a moratorium on the extraction and storage of fossil fuels in Northern Ireland given the concerns about environmental impacts and public safety.

  • Peter Lavery
    last Wednesday

    Alliance Lurgan representative Peter Lavery has said it is vital local people participate in an ongoing consultation into the future of the Lurgan campus of Craigavon Senior High School.

    Peter was speaking after meeting the Education Authority about the potential move, which would see the school's pupils transferred to the Portadown campus from September 2020. A public consultation, which closes today, is available on the Education Authority's website.

  • Patricia O'Lynn
    last Tuesday

    Ballymena needs positive political leadership, Alliance's Patricia O'Lynn has said, as she revealed she will be standing for the party in May's Council election.

    Patricia, who has stood for the party in the North Antrim constituency in the recent past, will contest the Ballymena district electoral area of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council in the poll on May 2. She told delegates at Alliance's recent party conference while announcing her candidacy it was a chance to showcase the positive side of the town and its increasing diversity.

    "I have been meeting with residents, listening to their concerns and the issues which really matter to them. The biggest topic raised with me by people has not been health, education or even the collapse of Stormont but rather fear - fear of an uncertain future, of a post-Brexit Northern Ireland, of sectarian violence, of unemployment, of anti-social behaviour and of paramilitaries.

    "The people of Ballymena are crying out for positive political leadership. They are demanding better and deserve better. That's why I am standing in this election, because I will work tirelessly to deliver just that. Through Alliance representation on the local Council we can create better services and help develop an integrated, inclusive Ballymena.

  • 25 February
    Alliance Armagh representative Jackie Coade has expressed her condolences following the death of a nine-year-old girl in a car crash there.

    The Hamiltonsbawn Road has been closed between Ratarnet Road and Lenalea Road following the crash this morning.

    "I am shocked and deeply saddened by this tragedy, and my deepest condolences go out to the family and loved ones of this poor girl," said Ms Coade.

    "I can only imagine the pain the family are experiencing at this time. Everyone in the community will be shocked by this news, particularly given it is such a young girl that has passed away following the crash. I hope the driver and any other passengers in the car have a swift recovery as well.

  • Stephen Farry, Connie Egan, Scott Wilson and Karen Douglas with Translink's David Graham over Park and Ride
    25 February
    Alliance Bangor West representatives have said Translink have recognised the need to tackle the problems caused by the lack of Park and Ride capacity for Bangor commuters.

    An Alliance delegation including Councillor Scott Wilson and Council candidate Connie Egan met with Translink's Service Delivery Manager David Graham to present a petition calling for action on the problem, the latest stage of their campaign to establish a new Park and Ride. The pair said it was a productive meeting.

    "This problem affects all stations on the line, but the problems at Bangor West are the most severe. The public clearly wants to a solution put in place to tackle these issues," said Scott Wilson.

    "It was a productive meeting in which it was clear Translink both take the issue seriously and recognise the need to tackle the problem by providing extra car parking spaces for those who use their trains."

    "Going by this meeting, I am hopeful we can work with Translink to find a solution which works for everyone in the local area," added Connie Egan.

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