- Animal Rights
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- Disability rights
- Food and Sustainable Production
- Gender Equality
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Fair Rent Homes NowHousing injustice is a national emergency in Ireland. We need a sustainable solution to the crisis. The provision of state owned rental housing on a large scale, on a non profit basis, would go a long way toward solving the problem. This would provide secure, affordable, high quality rental housing for anyone who needs it, no matter what your income is. Fair Rent Homes would mean that: - 70,000 households would be provided with a home, at a fair rent, for life - a pool of high quality, Fair Rent Homes would be there, owned by the nation, for future generations, instead of spending billions on rent subsidies to private landlords - pressure would be put on the private rental sector to improve standards and provide fairer rents in order to compete with Fair Rent Homes
#PassTheBillsAccording to the latest IPCC report, the next twelve years are crucial for action on climate change. There are four ambitious climate and environmental Bills which have been brought by Opposition Parties to the Dail. If the government truly wants to make Ireland a leader on climate change, it should support the passage of these Bills immediately. These are - The Climate Emergency Measures Bill (Bríd Smith PBP) - The Microgeneration Support Scheme Bill (Sinn Fein) - The Just Transition (Worker and Community Environmental Rights) Bill (Green Party) - The Waste Reduction Bill (Green Party) This is a simple ask. These are all sensible Bills which will move Ireland towards being a cleaner, greener and fairer place to live. We have no time to wait. #ClimateActionNow
Use Irish Peacekeeping Record in Lebanon to protect Syrians from harassment from Lebanese ArmyLebanon, along with Turkey and Jordan, has been extraordinary in providing refuge to Syrians fleeing war and persecution in their homeland since 2011. While the numbers and circumstances of how the refugees have been accommodated vary greatly, the willingness of Syria's neighbours to accept proportionately massive numbers of refugees has undoubtedly saved countless thousands of lives. In Lebanon, specifically, with a native population of just 4.4 million, upwards of 1 million Syrians have sought refuge. This, clearly, has created massive challenges and strains on the services and infrastructure of a country which itself is only recovering from years of turmoil and strife but, in general, Syrians have been able to feel relatively safe in Lebanon. Of late however, elements of the Lebanese army have escalated a campaign of intimidation and harassment against Syrians with the putative intention of forcing people to return to Syria. Just last week, on two successive nights, soldiers under the command of Lebanese Army Intelligence Colonel Melhem Hadchiti and 9th Brigade Commander Brigadier General Pierre Abu Assaf carried out raids in around 30 camps around Arsal in freezing temperatures. People were forced out of their tents into the cold with no regard for their welfare or dignity while their tents were ransacked. Many hundreds were detained and suffered torture and abuse. As a country with a long and distinguished military record in Lebanon and the Golan Heights in the form of UN peacekeeping deployments, the Irish Army is uniquely placed to exert its influence with the Lebanese Army. We are urgently but respectfully requesting the Minister for Defence Leo Varadkar to use his influence and good offices with the UN as well as with his counterpart in Lebanon Yaacoub Sarraf to ensure that these unforgivable violations against suffering and defenceless people cease immediately. References: Deutsche Welle: Germany says Syrian deportees could face reprisals: reports https://www.dw.com/en/germany-says-syrian-deportees-could-face-reprisals-reports/a-46367849 Out of Syria: shifting routes and returns: https://www.iss.europa.eu/content/out-syria-shifting-routes-and-returns Union of Relief and Development Associations - Number of Syrian refugees in Lebanon : http://urda.org.lb/en/details.aspx?ID=1426
Belleek Woods must be a park, not commercial forestryThis week the Government-owned forestry company, Coillte, has destroyed a large section of mature trees in Belleek Woods -- it follows a Coillte felling operation in 2014 that resulted in the death of nesting heron chicks. The woods is too important to the people of Ballina, wildlife and tourism in the town for it to continue as commercial forestry -- commercial felling has gone on too long. It needs to stop now and Belleek Woods needs to be redesignated as a park. Earlier this year Coillte sold Moorehall estate, south of Castlebar, to Mayo County Council. It was reported that the estate will be developed in collaboration with the National Parks and Wildlife Service of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. A similar transfer from Coillte to the council is needed in Ballina. Large scale tree felling needs to stop now. Mayo County Council needs to buy or be given Belleek Woods from Coillte as soon as possable.
It's Not Fare!. No To More Public Transport Fare Increases.In 2011 the average cash Dublin Bus fare for 4-7 stages was €1.60, the lowest fare was €1.15. The NTA recently announced that the new fares would increase to €2.15 and €3. This constitutes an 87.5% increase over this time. Fares on rail and LUAS will also increase by at least 10%. Ireland has one of the lowest subsidies to public transport in Europe. In an effort to cut down on carbon emissions, we should be getting people out of their cars. These increases will only serve to discourage people from using public transport. It's not Fare!!
#thisisnotconsentWe live in a culture where sexual assault can be dismissed as a joke, where a woman's choice of underwear can be used as a defence in a rape trial, where women do not feel safe in their own home, their school, workplace or community. Change will come from the ground up - from people speaking out and supporting each other and when our institutions and leaders take action to respond to the demand for change.
We demand rights for the Mary's Mansions Workers!Across Ireland, bricklayers and other construction workers are being asked to work as "self-employed" contractors. This isn't legal, and is done to save the employers' money, so they don't have to pay pension and PRSI contributions. It's totally wrong, and these workers have taken a stand against it. Because they stood up to a rogue employer, a number of them were sacked without notice, sparking the protest action. Mary's Mansions is a publicly-funded contract, and Clúid, who own the building, are a state-funded charity. Workers working on these contracts deserve to have their rights protected.
Students Rise for Climate, Jobs & Justice“I may be in the library but today TDs will hear my voice. #IRiseForClimate Jobs and Justice with students across Ireland.” We have 12 years to take action on climate change. This Wednesday TDs are gathering to listen to constituents concerns about the government's lack of climate action. Students’ voices need to be heard! Sign your name and we will print out a huge petition to show the TDs how many of us demand action. As students, most of us can’t attend because it’s exam season. We are studying hard for exams so we can get a job that might not exist in a world that will be very different from the one today. There are no jobs on a dead planet. We RISE for Action on Climate Change. We RISE for Jobs on a living planet. We RISE for justice for all.
Stop the Dump in FahanA planning application has been submitted to Donegal County Council, seeks “retention planning permission for filling of lands” at Crislaghmore, in Fahan. The application also seeks “retention planning permission for a machinery shed and planning permission to fill lands and all associated works.” Residents fear they will be adversely affected by the proposed development. The applicant in question has “made numerous applications for a ‘waste facility’, a ‘landfill site’, a ‘public dump’ and for ‘landfill’ for quarry material.” Each time residents have objected, the applicant has gone on to let things expire, then reapplied on a ‘retention’ basis or as a new application. The re-application is placed in a local newspaper, which probably has limited readership in the whole of the surrounding district. The applicant also posts applications at least 15 to 20 feet from the road so they cannot, not only be read but are impossible to see. Residents feel as if the applicant is trying to ‘slip one by them’ each time. The applicant has erected a shed post expiry of the last application. The shed was not in the previous specification and was not even in the same place as previously applied for. However, the applicant has now applied for retention of the shed and for landfill to help ‘enhance’ the land upon which the shed stands. Residents are puzzled by the application for further building and landfill, when the applicant knew from the start that the area was not suitable for the shed. We also object to the landfill based on the fact that any material could be used, from household refuse to quarry, industrial and commercial refuse. The applicant is also parking HGV lorries on residents' land “in contravention to’ Donegal County Council enforcement letters. A second person is also parking lorries and keeping pallets of bricks on land in the area, also in contravention of a Donegal County Council enforcement notice. Residents see drains being laid, landfill being delivered and other groundworks taking place, day and night. These people think they are ‘untouchable’ by Donegal County Council. Residents are particularly upset by the fact that the applicant has widened part of a little country road. This used to be a quiet residential area but we now have HGV and other large machinery and equipment passing up and down the road, on an almost constant basis. This is a single lane track, you wouldn’t even call it a road, which is not suitable for such machinery and the dust and noise is unbearable. In addition, the widening of the road has been entirely for the applicant’s benefit and not the community’s. They effectively built a turning circle for their trucks. It is unsightly and detracts from what was once a lovely country lane. The community in Fahan is worried about the effect the fumes from the lorries is having on the health of children in the area. Residents are also worried about the run off from this landfill, which will significantly interfere with the indigenous flora and fauna. This run off will eventually reach Lough Swilly. There is a bird and wildfowl reserve on the banks Lough and the environmental impact would be huge. We also have mussels growing in the Lough, which are exported worldwide and the run off could also contaminate this lucrative local produce. In recent times, the water supply has been interrupted, whilst work was ongoing on this site. And, subsequently, it has been cloudy and unfit to drink on occasion, Donegal County Council is pursuing an “active enforcement case” against the applicant seeking retention planning permission for “filling of lands” in Fahan. An Enforcement Notice is a legal document that requires certain action be taken to remedy a breach of planning control. They are issued where a development has taken place without the correct planning permission or outside the conditions of a planning permission. It is an outrage that this slow but steady activity is continuing unabated and his refusal to comply with planning authorities is all but ignored by council. This beautiful, scenic, quiet, country area MUST be saved.
Support the Occupied Territories BillThis is a chance for Ireland to stand up for the rights of vulnerable people – it is about respecting international law and refusing to support illegal activity and human suffering. Under international law (the Geneva Convention), the transfer by a State of its civilian population into a territory it has militarily occupied is a war crime. This legislation would apply to territories where there is a clear international legal consensus on the status of the occupation. As it stands, only the occupied Palestinian territories have been confirmed as occupied by the International Court of Justice. This Bill does not implement a boycott of Israeli goods, or single out Israel. It only bans the import and sale of goods produced in settlements that are illegal under international law. The European Union’s position is absolutely clear: Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory are “illegal under international law, constitute an obstacle to peace and threaten to make a two-state solution impossible”. Despite this, EU states, including Ireland, continue to make the settlements financially viable through trade and economic activity. The legal basis of the Bill and its permissibility under EU law are confirmed by several formal legal opinions: Michael Lynn, Senior Counsel in Ireland, Professor James Crawford of the University of Cambridge, Senior Counsel in the UK and one of the most eminent authorities on international law worldwide and former Attorney General Senator Michael McDowell have all confirmed the legality of the Bill. This Bill has cross-party support from all parties in the Dáil and Seanad but the government is refusing to support it. This is why we are calling on Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney and his party to back this Bill as we want all the people of Israel and Palestine to live in peace and security. We stand in support of international law and for the principles of peace and justice.
Provide safe crossing place for school community at Rathgar Junior SchoolWe would like a safe place for the children, staff and parents to cross the road to the school premises. Ideally, we would like a traffic warden/lollipop man/lady, a zebra crossing, ramps to slow oncoming traffic - especially from the roundabout and a pedestrian lights to help all members of the school community cross the road safely. We would like 'School Ahead' signs put up to warn drivers to excise caution. We would like these located in front of the school where we currently have zig zag lines, as we do not want children to be crossing the road between cars.Currently we have 167 pupils in our Junior School plus 19 children who attend Montessori on our premises. We have 21 members of full time staff and parents who also may cross the road to come to school.