Council 'must act' over depot flags

Published Friday, 29 November 2013
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Belfast City Council must take action over flags being flown illegally at their depots, a councillor has told UTV.

Council 'must act' over depot flags
Tricolours flying at a west Belfast council depot. (© Pacemaker)

Over recent weeks, both Union Flags and Tricolours have been erected on council property - including an Irish flag which appeared at a cleansing depot off the Springfield Road - and a debate is ongoing over who is responsible for their removal.

Alliance councillor Mervyn Jones said that the council's depots should be neutral.

"First of all, I think council workers feeling intimidated is unacceptable."

He continued, saying that they were just doing their job and it was not up to council employees to remove flags.

"The council is going to have to do something about it.

"Council depots should be neutral - in terms of cleansing depots there should be no flags and that's always been council policy pre-dating City Hall's vote last year.

"It's not up to the council workers to feel they have to remove them."

He added: "The council has to arrange for them to be removed - maybe bring somebody in - and the police need to be involved to oversee safety."

A council spokeswoman said: "The ongoing situation with flags being erected at a number of council depots is a sensitive issue.

"We continue to assess the situation at each site and are working with local representatives to try resolve the issue. We also take into consideration the safety of our staff in reviewing our response to the situation."

© UTV News
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45 Comments
J in N.I wrote (143 days ago):
Three words......tit for tat! If we can't fly our flag then you can't fly yours! This country is an embarressment with "news" like this and unfortunately for those passionate about these topics, well you're all as deluded as each other! Live and let live!!
Ryan in Belfast wrote (143 days ago):
I live near this depot and the Irish Tricolour should stay on the council depot, im not intimidated by my own flag and im certainly not intimidated by loyalist threats. If the Union flag stays on other council depots, then the Irish Tricolours will be staying too, the Irish Tricolour is our national flag after all.
Sam1690 in Ballysillan wrote (143 days ago):
Most Republicans are clearly missing the point. A tricolour was erected, locals intimidated staff and a death threat was issued.That surely is the underlying point. Violent Republicanism is still using that flag to intimidate and threaten British Citizens.
Nick Kent in Belfast wrote (144 days ago):
Bill in Ards talks some sense but is incorrect regarding the poppy. The Poppy Appeal isn't some international symbol to remember the dead of two world wars it's a charity campaign run by the Rpyal British Legion and its stated aim is 'to provide for the welfare of past and present members of the British armed forces' How can people expect Nationalists to support a symbol which may contribute to the welfare of those soldiers who murdered innocents in Ballymurphy, Bloody Sunday etc? On the wider flags issue it's an absolute disgrace that the Irish National Flag is being flown from any lampost let alone at a Council cleansing depot. Just link the red white & blue painting of kerbstones is vandalism of public property the anual act of vandalism, on a massive scale, adorning every lampost with a Union Flag and letting them fly until they are rags brings shame on that flag.
Ryan in An Dun wrote (144 days ago):
@ deeko in Belfast. How do you think republicans see the Union Jack? Protestors last Christmas covering their faces with it trying to break into the city hall? Participants in the marching season attacking police officers covering their faces? You see what you want to see. You have to wake up and smell the coffee. The Union Jack is seen as an oppressive and terrorising many countries. How many times do you see other countries burning the Union Jack and the American flag because of the atrocities they have committed? The only people that burn the Irish tri colour are the people that are afraid of it. It only burnt in the North of Ireland along with catholic symbols. Why is that deeko? Can you answer that or even give a reason why there are so many tatty union jacks still hanging from the summer? Take off your red, white and blue tinted glasses off mo chara.
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