[Sinn Fein]

18th June 2002

Report on Traveller community need highlight need for strategic response

Sinn Fein Health Spokesperson, West Belfast MLA Sue Ramsey has welcomed the publication of a new study into the needs of the travelling community and said that it highlights the need of a co-ordinated strategic response in providing services.

Ms Ramsey said:

``The travelling community have been vocal in demanding services on their terms. This report and the previous Report on Social Inclusion from the Office of the First and Deputy First Minister demand action.

``We need a cross departmental approach that includes health and social services, education and adult education, housing services and benefits services - a co-ordinated strategic response.

``The travelling community is bedevilled with many of the effects of multiple deprivation - poor living conditions, poor health, less access to services, lower educational opportunities and long term unemployment. The situation needs to be urgently addressed.'' ENDS

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