Dickson Disappointment at Government’s Slow Response to Caterpillar Job Losses

East Antrim MLA, Stewart Dickson, has expressed his disappointment at the revelation by Minister for the Economy, Simon Hamilton, that action was not taken until 2016 to meet Caterpillar management by Invest NI. ​ Mr Dickson said: “While I am disappointed I am not surprised at the lack lustre attempt by the Government to mitigate Caterpillar job losses. In response to my question to the Minister, Simon Hamilton stated Invest NI did not meet with Caterpillar until May 2016. This is nine months after the Caterpillar initially announced, in September 2015, the potential for job losses within the company. “While it is comforting to hear that there was regular contact between Invest NI staff and

Dickson Shocked at Chain Reaction Job Loses

East Antrim Alliance MLA, Stewart Dickson, is shocked by what he considers to be a truly devastating blow to the work force at Wiggle and Chain Reaction Cycles so soon after their merger in July of this year. ​ Mr Dickson said: “At that time, the new company, rebranded as ‘WiggleCRC’, said it would create an even more compelling customer proposition, while seeking to extend its product range over a stronger, well invested platform and infrastructure. Together the combined business, which had revenues in excess of £300m, would be better placed to compete in the growing global online market for cycling, running, swimming and tri-sports products. “I express my deep concern at what turned so qu

Dickson calls for continuation of Freedom of Movement for the sake of the Health Service

Alliance East Antrim MLA, Stewart Dickson, at a Stormont debate on nursing shortages, called for the continuation of freedom of movement. Mr Dickson after the debate stated: “We have a serious shortage of nurses and midwives in Northern Ireland. While those currently working are doing an excellent job, the process is broken.” ​ “We need the support of nurses from the EU, and further afield, to keep our Health Service operational. Without the support of nurses from abroad, a difficult situation for the HSC, could become an impossible situation. “I want to call on the Executive to perform better, and more cohesively, in representing Northern Ireland in any Brexit negotiation. Be that in London

Stewart Dickson: Racism has the potential to be Northern Ireland’s greatest problem

Racism in Northern Ireland must be addressed. No one in Northern Ireland will dispute that we are well on our way to recovery. Recovery from our past. Recovery from the financial crisis. Recovery from violence. Yet the rise of racism has barely begun to be addressed. ​ The reasons behind the rise in racism are disputed. Maybe racism in Northern Ireland has always been high but with greater trust in the police, reporting of hate crime has increased. Or perhaps, more disturbingly, we as a society are use to sectarian prejudice and violence and it is now being redirected towards ethnic minorities. ​ It has been noted with relief from some Government Ministers, that Northern Ireland did not foll

Dickson Disappointment at Shelved York Street Interchange Project

East Antrim MLA, Stewart Dickson, has expressed his huge disappointment at the news that the York Street Interchange Project has been put on hold. ​ The £100million project had been given the go-ahead last year and was aimed at solving Belfast’s traffic problems at one of the busiest junctions in the city, and what is the 3rd busiest junction in the UK, whilst also including the laying of foundations under the Dargen Rail Bridge to enable the provision of enhanced rail access between East Antrim and Belfast Central Station. ​ In a recent report released by Transport NI it was revealed that the project, which had 40% of its funding being provided by the EU, was now on hold indefinitely follow

Dickson Receives Assurances from NIE

East Antrim MLA, Stewart Dickson, has received assurances from NIE that the cable that fell down near Westmount Avenue, Windmill, Carrickfergus, is safely back up and is there to stay. The cable last came down in April 2010 due to heavy snowfall caused by the bad winter of that year, and although was quickly repaired by NIE it recently came down again. Mr Dickson said: “Having spoken to NIE they confirmed that the cable came down this time due to ‘wear and tear’. They have assured me that it is now been reinstated more securely and should remain there until it is eventually replaced when it reaches the end of its useful life.”

Dickson welcomes proposed arrival of M&S and potential further development of Courtalds site

East Antrim Alliance MLA, Stewart Dickson, welcomes the proposed arrival of Marks & Spencer as part of the further redevelopment of the old Courtalds site. ​ Mr Dickson said: “I was fortunate enough to have a full briefing two weeks ago from the Developer, as well as the current public viewing at the Loughshore Hotel this week. ​ “I favour the redevelopment of the entire area that was the old Courtalds site. I am hopeful that the potential arrival of M&S in Carrickfergus will actually act as a magnet and stimulus that will encourage visitors to come in to the town centre and enjoy our historic heritage as well as doing more of their shopping there. ​ “It’s important to realise that over 20%

Tory Mask Starting to Slip

East Antrim Alliance MLA, Stewart Dickson, in reacting to a speech at the Conservative Party Conference from Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, says the true face of the Tory party is starting to show with plans to make employers disclose what percentage of their workforce is non-British. ​ Mr Dickson said: "I am appalled at the plans from the Home Secretary to make employers publish a breakdown of the nationality of their workforce. Even suggesting they will name and shame companies who do not comply with this rule is unbelievable. Is the next move to make the workers themselves wear some identifying marker? ​ "The Tories are now showing their true attitude to migrant workers. The fact that the Ho

PM talks Brexit while the DUP pours champagne

East Antrim Alliance MLA, Stewart Dickson, says as the Prime Minister sets out her Brexit timetable, the DUP are busy pouring champagne. ​ Mr Dickson was speaking after it emerged the DUP was sponsoring a champagne reception at the Conservative Party Conference said: “This champagne reception for Conservative Party conference delegates, sponsored by the DUP, is a clear sign that not only has the leadership changed its attitude to alcohol, but has got its priorities wrong. “As the Prime Minister makes public her timescale for triggering Brexit, it is of great concern that while the DUP is sipping champagne in Birmingham, the people of Northern Ireland have been given no idea from the Executiv

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