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  • Chris and his colleagues supporting the IF campaign
  • Chris speaking in the chamber
  • The cranes at Harland and Wolff - East Belfast
  • C.S. Lewis Library - East Belfast
  • IFA Celtic Event
  • Chris helping to bring the G8 Youth Summit communique to the Assembly
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Lyttle: Racial Equality not a priority for OFMDFM

During the Assembly on 23 March, Lyttle questioned whether the OFMDFM is adequately prioritising matters of racial equality. The MLA's concerns arose in light of the delays to the OFMDFM Racial Equality Strategy and race relations legislative reform.

Lyttle voiced his support for a Racial Equality Strategy and action plan that would set out the positive contribution of ethnic minorities within their communities while tackling inequalities in education, employment and health.

"We also need the long overdue delivery of race relations law reform given the unanimous decision of the Assembly in 2009 that the current Race Relations (Northern Ireland) Order does not offer the same level of protection as in other parts of the UK and Ireland," Lyttle said.

In addition to pointing out the OFMDFM's postponed actions, Lyttle also raised the matter of the minority ethnic development funding for 2015-16, which is yet to be confirmed.

"Given how late [the First Minister's] office will be in calling for and awarding minority ethnic development funding for the 2015-16 financial year, which is just upon us, will he consider extending the current level of funding for another year to allow a proper system to be put in place?" he asked.

South Belfast MLA Anna Lo echoed Lyttle's sentiments, adding that she has waited for more than eight weeks for answers to her question about the 2015-16 Minority Ethnic Development Fund timeline.

She added: "Alliance will continue to raise these issues with OFMDFM in order to ensure that the action needed to build a united community for everyone in Northern Ireland is taken."

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