News and Updates
10th December 2021
Greater Shankill Residents and Activists Come Together to Say “We Deserve Better.”
A group of local activists and residents have come together to raise awareness of the impact of vacant and derelict land in Greater Shankill as part of World Human Rights Day.
There are over 80 sites of vacant and derelict land in Greater Shankill, comparable to the size of 62 football pitches. The #BUILDshankill initiative has been working over the past 6 months to campaign for action to address the issue, and the local activists and residents organised a series of flying pickets and white line protests across the area in support of #BUILDshankill.
Billy Drummond from #BUILDshankill said, “We welcome the support of local residents and activists from communities across Greater Shankill. Vacant and derelict land affects everyone in the area and it’s time for change. As a community we can only do so much - we need a comprehensive approach at Government level to address the issue. This needs to happen as soon as possible, before things decline further.”
Ian McLaughlin from Lower Shankill Community Association said, “Today was about continuing to campaign about what is a basic human rights issue. Everyone has a right to live without the blight of dereliction staring them in the face every day. Derelict land and increased crime are inextricably linked as verified by PSNI statistics. Today we have come together as a community to say ‘We deserve better’”.
The #BUILDShankill initiative has commissioned research into the issue and is currently engaging with both statutory agencies and politicians to demand urgent action. The initiative has also been working in local communities to organise clean-ups of sites and reduce the negative visual impact of vacant and derelict sites wherever possible.
Over the coming months the initiative will be working with young people on a short-film and will be delivering training on activism, human rights, and physical regeneration. If you would like more information on #BUILDshankill or how to become involved please contact Billy Drummond (Tel: 02890311420 or E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org) or visit www.build-shankill.co.uk.