The Lord Mayor advised that Councillor Corr had resigned from the Council and she, along with several other Members from across the Chamber, paid tribute to the excellent work that he had undertaken during his time as a Councillor.
The Lord Mayor also advised that Councillor Pankhurst would be stepping down as a Councillor during December, therefore this would be his last meeting. Several Members from across the Chamber thanked Councillor Pankhurst for his contribution and dedication and wished him well for the future.
The Lord Mayor welcomed Councillor Róis-Máire Donnelly to her first meeting of Council and wished her well in her new position as Councillor.
The Lord Mayor, on behalf of the Council, offered condolences to the family of Ronan Kelly, Continuous Improvement Manager, particularly to his partner Paula Carville, on his recent passing.
The Lord Mayor also paid tribute to Paul Surgenor, HMO Technical Officer, who had recently passed away, and extended condolences to his family.
Councillor McCabe offered condolences to the family of Vicky Phelan, who had recently passed away following a long battle with Cervical Cancer, after receiving a misdiagnosis in 2001. She commended the work that Vicky had undertaken since her diagnosis, having tirelessly campaigned to raise awareness of cervical cancer and for better healthcare. She advised that she had written to the Lord Mayor’s office seeking the Council to host an event on 23rd January to mark Cervical Cancer Prevention Week, 23rd January – 29th January 2023.
Several Members referred with sadness to the recent passing of Dr Eamon Phoenix and paid tribute to his excellent work as a historian and broadcaster, noting his contribution to the Council during its Decade of Centenaries Programme.
Councillor de Faoite extended condolences to the family of Robert Morrow, Director of International Leadership Centre at Boston College, he advised that he had been a great friend of Belfast and had been deeply interested in the future success of the city and asked that the Lord Mayor, on behalf of the Council, write to extend condolences to his wife and family.
Councillor McCabe, as Chair of the Women’s Steering Group, commended the work of the Council and its staff regarding a number of recent Council initiatives and awards that had been achieved which recognised the Council’s commitment around the issue of violence against woman.
Councillor O’Hara highlighted that today was World Aids Day, a day dedicated to raising awareness about HIV and how it was spread and to commemorate those who had died. He thanked the Lord Mayor and the Members for wearing a red ribbon which he had circulated earlier to help raise awareness. Councillors Murray and Long commended the work of Positive Life and the Rainbow project in supporting people with HIV.
Councillors Smyth and de Faoite congratulated East Belfast GAA in its recent victory achieving Co. Down Junior Camogie Champions.
Councillor McKeown congratulated St Brigid’s on winning the County Antrim u20 men’s football championship.
Councillor de Faoite commended the Council on Belfast having been listed as one of the world’s leading climate action cities by the Carbon Disclosure Project and welcomed the recognition that the Council had been given for its work in relation to the One Million Trees initiative.
Councillor Gormley congratulated South Belfast man Mark Shanks on his recent inclusion on the Republic of Ireland Soccer Squad, he noted his successful debut against Malta, and wished him well in his future career.