The Government is committed to ensuring that the State's approach to remembering this very complex period in our history, and all of those who lost their lives during those years, will be based on the respectful, sensitive, appropriate and authentic approach that has become the hallmark of the Decade of Centenaries commemorative programme.
We have entered the most challenging and sensitive phase of the Decade of Centenaries and the Government's commemoration planning continues to be informed by the guidance of the Expert Advisory Group on Centenary Commemorations, and consultation with the All-Party Consultation Group on Commemorations.
One of the cornerstones of the State's approach to commemorations over the coming years will be to continue to further reconciliation on the island of Ireland and between Ireland and Britain.
I am consulting widely with stakeholders and partners, including other Government Departments, the National Cultural Institutions and local authorities to best inform and finalise the State programme for 2020 early in the New Year.
To date, local authorities and other core stakeholders have responded very effectively to the themes of the State commemorative programme by developing inclusive, appropriate and citizen-focused initiatives, to encourage people of all ages to explore significant aspects of the political, historical, social and cultural context of that period. Funding allocations from my Department for local authorities and others in 2020 are currently under consideration and I expect to make an announcement shortly in this regard.
I further expect that local authorities and State partners will continue to have a key role in supporting engagement and facilitation with communities in developing appropriate commemorative initiatives as part of the Decade of Centenaries. This is particularly important, given the significance of and the need to be sensitive to the local historical context as per the principles expressed by the Expert Advisory Group.