Immediate action needed to help flood victims - UUP

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Immediate action needed to help flood victims - UUP

In the wake of devastating floods across Northern Ireland, the UUP infrastructure Spokesperson, John Stewart MLA, has joined with his party colleague from the worst affected Council area, Cllr. David Taylor from Newry, Mourne and Down District Council, in a response to the havoc of recent days.

Mr. Stewart commented;

“The scenes we have witnessed in recent days have been unbelievable. For areas to have seen three inches of rain fall in a 24-hour period is totally unprecedented.

“The damage caused to homes and businesses across Northern Ireland could, in the worst cases, take months to repair. In the meantime, the loss of income to businesses and financial burden placed on all those affected needs to be addressed as an urgent matter by both local councils, relevant departments and, in light of the lack of a functioning Assembly, the Secretary of State.

“There is an urgent need for the Department for Infrastructure to undertake a review of the flood defence measures across all areas impacted, particularly in those areas, such as Newry, that were so badly damaged.

“I would hope that all relevant departments are working together to present a cross-departmental strategy on dealing with worsening flooding to be considered as a priority for any incoming Executive.

“Having a functioning Assembly and Executive at this time would have allowed for the provision of emergency support programmes to be created and delivered, providing much needed help to those who have lost everything.”

Councillor Taylor added;

“The impact of the flooding across the council area is devastating for many businesses and homes.  The priority must be to offer them practical support at this difficult time.

“UK Government and local Departments need to provide financial support measures to local businesses, residents and community and voluntary organisations who have been impacted by flooding.  A lack of an Executive must not allow the delivery of such support to be hindered in any way

“I want to offer my sincerest Thanks to all those within statutory agencies and the local community who have been working around the clock to respond to the flooding crisis.”