Sinn Féin MLA and Minister in the Executive Office Declan Kearney has said regional and local government have a responsibility to share a strategic vision on how to improve the lives of citizens in the north.
Speaking at the NILGA/Solace conference in Belfast this morning, Declan Kearney said:
“Regional and local government should share a strategic vision on how we can improve the lives of all our citizens.
“Lateral thinking and partnership working are essential to such a process. Today’s conference is an important example of how that should be addressed.
“This event brings together all tiers of government with other stakeholders to share ideas and strategies; to discuss key issues first-hand; and, importantly to develop a shared emphasis on the future.”
Speaking about the newly restored power sharing government; the South Antrim MLA said:
“Our power sharing Executive wants the north to be a place which prospers through a strong, competitive, regionally balanced economy.
“Our society needs to have the support, services and capacity in place to ensure our community can fulfil its potential.
“We want to see more people working in better jobs and with decent pay and good conditions.
“And, we want to have a more equal society where diversity is respected.
“But overshadowing this work, Brexit presents enormous strategic challenges for all sectors and sections of our economy and society.
Turning to the role of leadership, Declan Kearney added:
“The overarching societal priorities and outcomes we are all working towards will not be easily delivered. But our responsibility in regional and local government is to ensure we are successful.
“We all, as leaders in the public and private sectors, and in community and voluntary organisations, need to take responsibility for making sustainable change on behalf of our citizens.
“A new opportunity to do just that now stems from the requirement on our power sharing, five party government to deepen civic engagement in relation to the co-design of public policy and the implementation of outcomes-based programmes for government which make a real difference to people’s lives.”