The Democratic Unionist Party is a political party in Northern Ireland formed in 1971.

In 2015, Arlene Foster was elected to lead the party following the retirement of Peter Robinson and has since fought to enhance Northern Ireland’s constitutional position within the United Kingdom.

The DUP has a vision to achieve long term political stability and to overall strengthen their relationship with the UK and the public by having five key priorities they want to address.

The DUP’s five key priorities:

Jobs – increase the number of jobs available as well as increase the overall incomes.

Families –protect family budgets.

Health – prioritise their spending habits on the health service.

Education – raise education standards for not only children but adults as well.

Infrastructure – invest in infrastructure for the future.

Theresa May has claimed she will form a government with the DUP as a result of the surprising election result on 8th June 2017, to help lead the UK through Brexit negotiations. She is confident their strong relationship will give them the ability to work together in the interest of the United Kingdom. However there have been some concerns by the public and other MPs.

Unlike the rest of the UK, the DUP has a very strict anti-abortion policy where it is still classed as a criminal offence to have an abortion in Northern Ireland. This concerns much of the British public and gives off a particularly controversial message.

Alongside this are the DUP’s views on LGBT rights. The DUP have no tolerance for the LGBT community and essentially promote discrimination against them through reducing the workplace opportunities and refusing to allow same sex couples adopt children. This could be incredibly detrimental to the LGBT community, just three years after there was finally movement and gay marriage was legalised.

Conservative MP’s have had fears that working with the DUP is going to tarnish their party’s brand due to these controversial policies they stand for. There is no guarantee that both parties will always agree on policies, as already seen with the two opposing opinions on abortion and LGBT rights. This means laws that would have previously passed with just the Conservative government may be refused.

For more information on the DUP’s policies, visit mydup.com

Image: Charles McQuillan/PA Wire/PA images