Alliance launch their manifesto ‘leading change’ ahead of general election

Alliance have launched their Westminster election manifesto, detailing their commitments for reforming Stormont, lowering the voting age, and scrapping first past the post for general elections. We've taken out the key points that you want to know.
The Alliance Party launch their manifesto. Image: Alliance Party

The Alliance Party has today launched their 2024 general election manifesto in Belfast.

Titled “Leading Change”, the 48-page document outlines their key policies. We have gone through it and picked out the key points we thought you would want to know.

Speaking at the launch event, Alliance leader Naomi Long said, “The Leading Change manifesto is not standalone but dovetails with previous Alliance publications, setting out our policy priorities for the next five years with a focus on issues over which Westminster has direct control or significant influence,”

“Alliance MPs intend to use their influence at Westminster to push for a fairer financial deal for Northern Ireland. That would allow us to improve our public finances, invest in sustainable public services and tackle the cost-of-living and cost-of-doing-business crises still impacting many people across our society.”

“They would also work for reform of the Stormont institutions, so no single party can collapse the Assembly and Executive again.”

The party elected one MP in 2019, Stephen Farry in North Down. Party leader Naomi Long will be hoping to take the Belfast East seat from DUP leader Gavin Robinson this year.

Ten key policies

  1. Reform of the Assembly and Executive, so no single party can collapse power-sharing.
  2. Delivering an improved financial settlement for Northern Ireland.
  3. Revising fiscal rules to account for the costs of environmental inaction and to enable investment in climate action.
  4. Creating a Green New Deal to decarbonise our economy.
  5. Repairing the relationship between the UK and the EU.
  6. Securing dedicated funding for integration and early years.
  7. Support for childcare costs.
  8. Advocating for a fair and welcoming immigration system, that upholds human rights.
  9. Reforming UK democracy by scrapping the Tories’ anti-protest laws, first past the post, and introducing voting at 16.
  10. Championing human rights and the rule of law.

Reform of Stormont

Alliance say that if the largest party eligible to nominate the first or deputy first minister are unwilling to do so, then the entitlement should pass to the next largest party.

They also want to replace the cross-community vote with a weighted majority that allows a vote to be passed if “approximately two-thirds of the whole Assembly” vote for it.

Currently, the First Minister and Deputy First Minister actually hold joint office, despite the name. Alliance say their titles should be changed to “Joint First Minister” to acknowledge that their offices are co-equal.

They want to scrap the designation system which currently means parties have to declare themselves as either unionist, nationalist or other.

Public Finances

Alliance want to see the UK fiscal rules reformed to account for the long-term impacts of public spending on the UK’s overall wealth, not just its debt.

They want the tax system to mean that their super-wealthy ‘pay their fair share’, and want to phase in carbon taxes to support the transition to a net-zero economy.

They say that Northern Ireland is underfunded, relative to our needs, hindering the capacity to transform public services. They want to secure a fiscal floor set above 124 in the next spending review and are calling for an independent analysis commissioned by the Treasury to support this.

The NI Economy

The Alliance manifesto says the Windsor Framework provides Northern Ireland with a ‘relative opportunity’ compared to the rest of the UK that comes from unfettered access to both the GB market and the EU market.

They say that alongside the Executive, the UK Government must take action to promote this dual-market access and ensure they don’t undermine this advantage by keeping EU law up-to-date.

Green New Deal

Alliance want to see a Green New Deal that focuses on decarbonising the economy, protecting workers, tackling fuel poverty, and creating jobs.

They want to end the use of fossil fuels, banning fracking and the opening of new coal mines, replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy.

The party also wants to see tax increases on ‘fossil fuel giants’ and wealth and property taxes on the super-rich to support the transition to net zero and end fuel poverty.


Alliance say they support a ‘compassionate, fair system and have always opposed the hostile environment’.

Their MPs will support action to reverse the increased minimum salary requirements for family visas, scrap the ban on dependents for those on a health and care worker visa, or student visa, and end employer-dependent visas so workers can change jobs.

They want to abolish the Rwanda Scheme, and any other third-country forced resettlement scheme, and establish safe and legal routes to claim asylum in the UK.

Scrapping FPTP and lowering voting age

Alliance want to scrap the current Westminster electoral system, first past the post, which gives the seat in a constituency to the candidate that receives the most votes.

They would prefer a system like we use in Northern Ireland for Assembly and Council elections: Multi-member Single Transferable Vote (STV).

A long-standing Alliance pledge is to lower the voting age to 16, and again this is something they push for in this manifesto.

Finally, they want to reform the House of Lords by having the members elected using proportional representation from the 12 regions of the UK, including Northern Ireland.

International affairs and defence

Alliance say that those in the armed forces should be properly remunerated and rewarded for their efforts, and should be provided with quality housing for them and their family.

They support NATO and advocate for stronger defence cooperation between the UK and EU, and say that a formal agreement should be agreed in the forthcoming Parliament.

In terms of nuclear weapons, they say that ‘the UK can and should help combat nuclear proliferation by leading by example in reducing nuclear weapons as part of agreed-upon multilateral efforts.

You can read the Alliance Party manifesto in full below, or by clicking here.

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