FactCheckNI partners with FactCheckEU for European-wide coverage

FactCheckNI partners with FactCheckEU for European-wide coverage
PRESS STATEMENT by FactCheckNI
19 March 2019

Hoaxes know no borders, especially in Europe. That’s why FactCheckNI is proud to announce the launch of FactCheckEU, a collaborative effort from 19 European fact-checking outlets to tackle disinformation and hoaxes, ahead of the 2019 European parliamentary elections in May. FactCheckNI will contribute relevant material, such as the UK’s departure from the EU. Continue reading FactCheckNI partners with FactCheckEU for European-wide coverage

How much do MLAs earn (or not)?

CLAIM: Progressive Politics NI claimed that MLAs were paid “nearly £2.2 million” in salaries up to 3rd September 2017.

CONCLUSION: Broadly accurate. The annual salary of an MLA is £49,500. For the period covered by the claim (13/3-13/9/2017), MLAs received a combined estimate of £2,333,188. Continue reading How much do MLAs earn (or not)?

Was funding cut for youth work?

CLAIM: The Irish News wrote that a funding cut places hundreds of youth work posts at risk.

CONCLUSION: There is no evidence of any cut, nor any proposed cut. Yet there is uncertainty about continued funding, for this and other programmes, in light of the composition of a new Northern Ireland Executive (or direct rule governance) after elections in March 2017. Continue reading Was funding cut for youth work?

TheJournal.ie: Are there really more Polish speakers than Irish speakers in Northern Ireland?

CLAIM: In Northern Ireland, more people speak Polish than speak Irish.

CONCLUSION: Mostly false. While the 2011 Census data show more people in Northern Ireland speaking Polish than Irish as their main language, based on other available data it is implausible that there are more who speak Polish than Irish. Continue reading TheJournal.ie: Are there really more Polish speakers than Irish speakers in Northern Ireland?

TheJournal.ie: Did the DUP really never commit to an Irish Language Act?

CLAIM: “The DUP at no point has ever agreed to establish an Irish Language Act with the UK government, with the Irish government, with Sinn Féin or anybody else.”

CONCLUSION: Accurate. The St Andrew’s Agreement committed the UK Government to an Irish Language Act, but subsequent legislation compelled the Northern Ireland Executive to produce a strategy (which may or may not include an Irish Language Act). Continue reading TheJournal.ie: Did the DUP really never commit to an Irish Language Act?

How dependent is Stormont on Westminster subvention?

CLAIM: Northern Ireland were once net contributors of revenue to HM Treasury.

CONCLUSION: True, up until the 1930s. But data show that Northern Ireland has run a fiscal deficit since 1966. The most recent figure, from 2013-14, is a subvention of £9.2 billion. Continue reading How dependent is Stormont on Westminster subvention?