Renewing Communities

The DUP aims to improve quality of life across the Province through measures that will empower communities to help themselves, assist the most disadvantaged people and regenerate urban areas.

Renewing Communities

The Democratic Unionist Party will seek to:

  • Introduce a Community Empowerment and Renewal Bill providing means to enable communities to acquire under-used public sector assets and deal with dormant land, strengthening communities and promoting social entrepreneurship
  • Explore the potential to create a website called FixOurStreetNI for residents to report problems with streetlights, drainage,waste collection, road maintenance, etc
  • One poorly maintained property can drag an entire estate or area down so we will explore means for agencies to carry out any necessary work and be compensated retrospectively when individuals persistently fail to maintain acceptable standards
  • Consult on outlawing election posters or limiting their use in terms of numbers, distance from polling stations, commencement date, etc
  • Require car parks accessed by the public to have family parking spaces
  • Appoint a Social Mobility Czar
  • Continue efforts to reduce the levels of poverty particularly child poverty
  • Establish a Social Protection Fund with an initial allocation of £20 million for the first year to assist those in the most severe hardship
  • Explore the potential for a derelict land levy in urban areas to reduce land-banking and enhance the environmental appearance of areas
  • Establish a Social Investment Fund that will provide £80 million to take forward specific area-improvement projects in disadvantaged communities across eight investment zones. The Fund will support communities to build pathways to employment, end dereliction, increase community services and tackle systemic issues linked to deprivation. The DUP will ensure the Fund is operated in a way that will benefit the whole community in those areas most in need
  • Incentivise schools to allow their premises to be used outside school hours by the community
  • Protect our network of local post offices
  • Increase volunteering and active citizenship
  • Ensure volunteers need only one criminal record check by making such checks portable
  • Facilitate the community and voluntary sector including faith based organisations to deliver more services across government, and review the level of auditing and accounting systems and processes
  • Extend provision of community allotments
  • Recognise value of community development work, develop a Provincewide strategic overview, support training for groups and individuals to build capacity, and assist more groups to be able to provide services
  • Take forward work on establishing a Unionist Academy


TOWN CENTRE REGENERATION

  • Establish and enhance town centre partnerships involving the local Council, PSNI, Roads Service and the Housing Executive
  • Legislate to establish Business Improvement Districts
  • Establish a Town Centre Regeneration Fund which Councils, Chambers of Trade etc can bid for on an annual basis to help address the current regional disparity of funding
  • Whilst valuing existing public art in the Province, introduce a moratorium on commissioning further projects in the current financial climate to maximise the funding available for streetscape work


LOCAL GOVERNMENT

  • Ensure the highest quality services at the lowest possible rates
  • Require Councils to justify and secure Ministerial approval for any increase in district rates beyond inflation
  • Grant Councils a legal power to request reports from and question all providers of services within their area
  • Swiftly legislate to confer community planning and the power of wellbeing on local government
  • Press ahead rapidly with the reconfiguration of local government and transferring of extra powers from central Departments
  • Enter into discussions with major chewing gum manufacturers to seek partnership arrangements with local government in dealing with discarded gum
  • Explore new technologies including the ‘Poover’ to assist in keeping our communities free from dog waste
  • Require fly posting associated with pubs or clubs to be considered in licensing decisions
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