Guidance for the Media using Parliament Buildings during the Assembly Elections
The election period for the Northern Ireland Assembly began when the Assembly was dissolved at 00.01, on Monday, 28 March 2022. This note is to provide advice to the media working in Parliament Buildings during this time.
The rationale behind this guidance is to ensure that candidates who were MLAs in the 2017-22 Mandate do not gain advantage by way of a media interview at Parliament Buildings over other candidates standing for election.
Media pass-holders can use their current Assembly passes to access the building and its facilities/studios as normal. Day pass-holders can also still access Parliament Buildings and the media facilities. However, the building will revert to Recess Opening Hours (7.30am to 7pm. Monday through Friday).
MLAs cease to be MLAs at dissolution. During dissolution, interviews with candidates standing for election, or political parties, will not be permitted in any area of Parliament Buildings, including media studios.
Interviews with prospective candidates or political parties cannot be carried out in the area inside the curtilage (i.e. the railings at the bottom of the steps) of Parliament Buildings.
Interviews may be undertaken outside this area in the wider Stormont Estate with the agreement of the Department of Finance (DoF) which manages the Estate. Contact 028 9037 8103.
Media personnel cannot record election-related pieces to camera in public areas in Parliament Buildings or within the curtilage (i.e. the railings at the bottom of the steps) of Parliament Buildings. Media may however continue to use the plug-in points on the front lawn and should contact email@example.com to arrange access. Media may also record pieces to camera in the wider Estate (subject to approval from DoF - contact 028 9037 8103.)
Those standing for election or re-election are not permitted to use footage of any Assembly proceedings when they or others were MLAs/Chairs/Deputy Chairs/Members of Committees, as part of their election campaign. This includes footage of interviews or events where Parliament Buildings is the backdrop.
If you have any questions about this guidance, please contact: The Communications Office Northern Ireland Assembly Email: firstname.lastname@example.org