Platform calls for rethink on cohesion and promises full programme soon

By the end of the year, a long awaited paper from the pressure group for political renewal and realignment Platform for Change will outline what a proper Programme for Government should look like, with an eye to next year’s assembly election. The paper will refresh the Platform’s core document  which itself  needs updating in the light of the cuts and many other developments. Today group supporters  published an open letter to the FM and DFM  expressing deep dissatisfaction with the poverty of vision in the consultation document Cohesion, Sharing and Integration, which holds out only a future of sustained segregation, defying the clear public aspiration that we live, work and are educated in common.

Robin Wilson, the academic and founder of the now sadly defunct think tank Democratic Dialogue and now a moving force for the Platform  and the victims campaigner Alan McBride, spoke at the top of this morning’s  Nolan show arguing for a shared future approach in education and housing and also pressing for proper policing for working people areas like North and West Belfast where it’s currently inadequate.

One of many themes I look forward to the Platform addressing is how it proposes to argue for political realignment along non-sectarian lines, while at the same time appealing to the existing political parties to raise their game.

Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London

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