SDLP leader Colum Eastwood MLA unveiled his new team of party spokespeople at an event in Belfast at Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiach.
The spokespeople will shadow the nine new NI Executive Departments which are set to be in place in the next Assembly mandate. The party is the first to do so and the team will include MLAs and councillors from across the North.
North Antrim Assembly Candidate Connor Duncan will have a particular focus on SMEs as he supports Patsy McGlone who has been named the Spokesperson for the Economy.
Connor Duncan said: “Small and medium sized businesses are the backbone of our economy and with the lack of large scale investment will continue to provide the majority of private sector employment in Northern Ireland. We have seen recently how SMEs have been abandoned during the recent floods. It was the SDLP that argued for relief funds to be made available to them so they could survive. We will continue to work in their interest and the interest of their employees.
“The SDLP have been strong advocates for incentives that would increase investment and grow jobs. That includes the improvement of rural broadband, the lowering of air passenger duty and the devolution of Corporation and Hospitality Taxes. Only a comprehensive plan that includes investing in infrastructure and prioritising education and skills training will deliver real prosperity for Northern Ireland. That means a focus on providing jobs for young workers, an end to forced emigration and delivering pledges on the economy. This is what we will be offering people in the months ahead.”
SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood MLA said: “In the coming election people will be asked to judge parties on the last nine years. Historic handshakes aren’t delivering opportunities for young people, investment in our roads and skills or a better economy. If people believe as we do that what has gone on in the last nine years is not good enough, we are ask them to support the SDLP in May and deliver the change in government that Northern Ireland needs.”