Sinn Féin’s Commission on the Future of Ireland held their 7th public event this month in the Verbal Arts Centre, Derry. The theme was ‘Exploring Northern Protestant Identities and Culture in a Shared Future’.
Catherine Pollock, a local community and rights based activist chaired the discussion and was joined on the panel by community activists Catherine Cooke and Alison Wallace.
Speaking after the event Foyle MLA Pádraig Delargy said, “This was an opportunity to build upon the themes discussed at last year’s event ‘Celebrating Diversity- Ending Divisions’ and on the very diligent reconciliation work that has been undertaken in Derry over many years.
“We were delighted with the attendance and the excellent contributions from the panel and the audience.
“The theme of the discussion helped to deepen our understanding of northern Protestant identities and culture.
“It’s not monolithic- this discussion provided us with an opportunity to learn how diverse it really is.”
Commission Chairperson Declan Kearney MLA gave the opening remarks at the event. He said, “It is important going forward, that we as republicans, not only internalise what we heard, but that we use it as a pathway for opening up new opportunities to expand this discussion.
“In turn, this will enable us to become much more sensitised, aware and informed about the kind of debate that is going to be required, that will lay the foundations for a new inclusive and agreed Ireland.
“We may never agree on the past but we can plan a better future together”