Sinn Féin Waterford TD David Cullinane has thanked all of those who participated in the Uniting Ireland conference that took place in the Tower Hotel on Thursday 12th October. The theme of the People’s Assembly was ‘The New Ireland is for Everyone – Have Your Say’ – and it was the ninth public event held by Sinn Féin’s Commission on the Future of Ireland. The next event will be in Conamara on 27th November.
Teachta David Cullinane said: “Almost 200 people attended the conference and for two hours we held a fascinating and interesting conversation on the future of Ireland. At the end of the meeting the packed hall unanimously backed the call for the Irish government to hold a Citizens’ Assembly to begin the work of planning for the unity referendum that is part of the Good Friday Agreement.
“I want to thank all of those who attended and contributed and to the panel of speakers – Liz Reddy chaired the event and the panel included Catherine Ní Fhaoláin, John Halligan and Irial Mac Murchú.
“The conference was a huge success. The contributions ranged across the adverse impact of partition on Waterford and the southern economy; the advantage of building a single all-island health service funded by direct taxation; the damage done by Brexit; engaging with the Protestant/unionist people, and the imperative of creating a new Ireland that embraces everyone on the basis of equality and respect.
“In recent years there has been a significant growth in North/South trade which underpins the enormous economic potential that can be generated by unity.
“The debate on Irish Unity is now centre stage. It is a daily topic of conversation for many and the demand for the unity referendum that is part of the Good Friday Agreement is growing.
“The Irish government is a co-guarantor of the Good Friday Agreement. It has a responsibility to defend the Agreement and part of this must be to plan for the future. We all plan for the future in our lives. The government has to end its resistance to this.
David Cullinane said, “It is crucial that those of us who want a united Ireland create the space for those who are opposed to it or those who have not made up their minds and who may be persuaded.
“Sinn Féin is seeking a new, agreed and united Ireland. We want to build a just, fair, and equal Ireland, an economically prosperous and socially and culturally inclusive Ireland. We want to protect our most vulnerable, the elderly, children, the ill, ethnic minorities, those with disabilities – and ensure that equality is the touchstone upon which all policies are formulated.
“I would appeal to citizens who are interested in the possibility and potential of Irish Unity to become active on this issue. Join in the conversation.”