- Animal Rights
- Corporate accountability
- Disability rights
- Food and Sustainable Production
- Gender Equality
- Governance and Transparency
- LGBT rights
- Mental health
- Privacy and Data Protection
- Rural Inequality
- Social Justice
- Transport and Infrastructure
- Workers' Rights
Community Swimming Pool for West WicklowBlessington and the surrounding areas have a growing young population. Presently the residents must travel outside of our community to Naas or Tallaght to access swimming facilities. The nearest community swimming pool to West Wicklow, provided by Wicklow County Council, is in Bray, an hour drive away from Blessington by car. According to the 2016 Census the municipal district population of West Wicklow is over 26,000 people. A community swimming pool would be of great benefit to the local communities and would help promote physical exercise, water safety and provide local employment. We believe that a community swimming pool needs to be provided for the growing population of West Wicklow.
Stop TV & Radio Censorship in Ireland now!Both Gemma O'Doherty (award winning journalist) https://gemmaodoherty.com/ and respected financial whistleblower Johnathon Sugarman http://whistleblowerirl.blogspot.com/ have un blemished track records in uncovering political and financial corruption for the public good in Ireland. Notably issues that are totally relevent, newsworthy, affect peoples lives and need to be known by the Irish public. For instance Gemma O'Doherty was the first to uncover the penalty points scandal and has yet to be interviewed or allowed to comment on this issue! Johnathon Sugarman who is a financial whistleblower with indepth knowledge about the financial and banking corruption that is rife including the recent Drumm judgement. Why have they not been asked to comment? Is this a form of media censorship? Many People believe that for any other reason than balance alone they should be given a voice on mainstream media otherwise this is a form of Censorship in Ireland.
Legalise Cannabis in IrelandThere is a global movement toward the decriminalisation of cannabis, supported by extensive research and real world trials. Evidence demonstrates that legalisation can be accomplished in a manner that improves overall societal health and wellbeing, while generating substantial tax revenue for schools, hospitals, and other social services. Furthermore, legalisation has been demonstrated to reduce cannabis use among teenagers , opioid abuse , and excess alcohol consumption . Furthermore, legal cannabis is a large and growing industry that creates many jobs and also generates immense tax revenue. In the United States, states like California, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington are benefitting from between $25 million and $60 million per year in taxes. The legal cannabis market, as a whole, in the United States generates approximately $10 billion per year in sales . Therefore, in light of these findings, we are calling on Leo Varadkar to lead Ireland towards immediately prioritising the legalisation and effective regulation of cannabis in order to improve our societal wellbeing. ---  https://www.zmescience.com/medicine/marijuana-among-teens-drops424/  https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/legalised-cannabis-latest-solved-opioid-crisis-medical-marijuana-studies-scientific-jama-internal-a8293831.html  http://blog.norml.org/2017/12/01/study-alcohol-sales-fall-following-cannabis-legalization/  http://www.westword.com/marijuana/legal-pot-sales-to-reach-10-billion-in-2017-report-estimates-9768851
Go Hydrogen.Major breakthroughs are being made in the hydrogen technology sector in transport, energy production and storage. The production of hydrogen is getting greener month on month. Worldwide, countries are running trials with hydrogen as it's main source of it's green transport needs for the future. If the Irish government fails to include Hydrogen in future plans then we will be left behind yet again. We have the capacity as a nation both in our technology and chemistry sectors, to drive this forward and to lead the way on green technology.
Call On LloydsPharmacy to Accept Labour Court RecommendationLloydsPharmacy workers deserve respect from their employer. In their own words: "Employee's don't get the credit they deserve. The company are willing to see experienced staff leave rather than pay them what they deserve." "For the work, advice and care we give to our customers we are very undervalued and underpaid." "I have no guaranteed hours in my contract even though I normally work 38 hrs. We were rejected for mortgage because I have no set hours in my contract. When I asked for my hours to be put in the contract I was told it couldn't be done. I don't think that's fair." Our Mandate members do not want to be on strike, and are only taking this action as a last resort. We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused to the public but we ask for their understanding as our members are forced to take action. Lloyds Pharmacy refuses to engage with their trade union despite a Labour Court recommendation that stated: ‘“the Court recommends that the parties engage in order to seek agreement in relation to the matters raised by the Trade Union…’ Yet Lloyds Pharmacy management continue to ignore the Court, their members and their designated representatives. Mandate has been campaigning for improvement in working condition in LloydsPharmacy, including: • A pay increase and incremental pay scales; • The introduction of a sick pay scheme; • Security of hours and the elimination of zero hour contracts; and • Improvements in annual leave entitlements and public holiday premiums. LloydsPharmacy Ireland operates 88 stores across the Republic of Ireland with approximately 800 staff in their retail business. They are owned by the largest pharmaceutical company in the world, McKesson Corporation, which has revenues of $198.5 billion (€169 billion – more than double the annual revenue of the Irish government).
Build Public Housing Belcamp Lane/Northern CrossThe housing crisis is now worse than at any point in the state’s history - 10,000 Homeless (1,739 Homeless Families – 3, 755 Homeless Children) - Average Rents Across Dublin = €1,614 - Government subsidies to landlords in 2017 = over €623k - 600,000 young people stuck at home, unable to access housing according to last census It was recently reported that there is enough state owned land (local authority and NAMA) zoned for residential development to build over 110,000 units https://www.irishtimes.com/…/state-owns-enough-zoned-land-t… Yet what has Dublin City Council's approach been to the development of the land it owns? In the case of the Lawrence Lands (Oscar Traynor Rd) they plan to mostly privatised the site with developers being invited to construct all 600 plus units but keep 70% for themselves (50% purely for profit and 20% for an undefined ‘affordable’ rent) with just the remaining 30% for public housing. At this rate we will never house those on the housing list as well as the hundreds of thousands who cannot even apply for public housing let alone the additional demand the arises year on year. Rather than waiting for similar bad proposals for other council owned sites the initiative should be taken by housing campaigners and public representatives to propose how best public land can be used to help resolve the crisis. Solidarity's alternative proposal for Belcamp Lane/Northern Cross Local Solidarity Councillor Michael O'Brien is proposing an alternative approach across the state where public housing (social and affordable) is built on publicly owned land. Take the Belcamp Lane site at Northern Cross which is council owned but where there are no plans on the horizon to build housing. Solidarity proposes that some 500 apartments and duplexes, similar in design to Newtown Court could be built and made available for 50% social and 50% affordable housing to local people with a housing need. This would be financed through the Social Housing Investment Fund. Accommodation meeting the needs of the local Traveller community could also be delivered on this site. Cllr O'Brien engaged the voluntary services of an architect to come up with an indicated site plan which shows what could be done. In this plan there are - the are 119 units on each floor (i.e. 4 floors = 476 units, allowing for duplexes). - the 3 beds are 100m2, the 2 beds are 81m2, the studios are 45.5m2 (a duplex would be two studios one on top of the other). - all units (except at the north of the site) are accessed from the north and have southeast or southwest facing balconies, and share south facing gardens (the public open space is mostly divided up between the units in this way). - there are pedestrian routes connecting the blocks, so that some of the ground floor plans will be different to allow for this This is not a fixed proposal set in stone but a vision of what can be done. If community support can be built up for this proposal, taking on board further suggestions and amendments this plan will be brought to Dublin City Council's North Central Area Committee and Housing Special Policy Committee with a view to securing the support from other councillors and putting the ball in the court of the Council officials to seriously engage. Check out https://www.facebook.com/PublicHousingBelcampNorthernX/ for the progress of the campaign
Return to glass milk bottlesThe plant can not sustain our use of plastic. Plastic is a by product of fossil fuel which is not renewable. Our oceans are polluted by millions of tons of plastic which are nit recycled properly. With bin charges goin up on the general public more and more plastic waste is finding its way to landfill and the seas. In order for our planet to survive we must return to the use of glass bottles..
Demand full rights for people with disabilities in Ireland - add your voiceAfter an 11-year delay, the Government recently took the final steps towards ratifying the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. However, it turns out that the government has for now abandoned its pledge to at the same time ratify a key protocol that goes along with the Convention. The protocol gives people with disabilities a real chance to achieve their rights in cases where the government is failing them. The protocol allows groups or individuals to make complaints to the UN to ensure the government does what it says it will do. This government has effectively turned its back on 640,000 people with disabilities in this State by failing to ratify this protocol.
Minimum wage increaseThe wages paid at present in ireland are not enough to cover the rising living costs .This is simply not enough to live on, with the average weekly minimum wage income €320- €360 per week. (€9.60 per hour). The average wage needs to be set to at least €11 per hour to cover living costs and for a decent standard of living, which is our right. The wages have stayed the same for a decade in Ireland, while everything else has gone up in price considerably. The wages are completely unrealistic and anyone trying to pay rent/ mortgage/ car costs/TV licence/ utility Bills/ refuse/ WiFi/ loans,etc are stretched to the limites and having to get into further debt just to make ends meet. This is not good enough. In Ireland it is well known that the cost of living is really high and it should be met with a fair minimum wage to meet the rising living costs. We deserve better than this, and we demand an immediate review of the minimum wage to a fair and realistic one. In Scandinavian countries, where the standard of living is rated the highest in the world, the minimum wage is €25 per hour, and the working week has been decreased to 32 Hours. This means people have a good standard of living for the work they do.They are less stressed, therefore they don't need to take sick days, and their overall work productivity is higher, as they are less stressed. They can easily cover their living costs and have some kind of lifestyle, which we are entitled too. This is also really good for the economy and communitites as people will spend more, meaning there is more money circulating in communities and the economy- everybody benefits. Please help to support this campaign and share with family and friends. Something really needs to be done, and together we do have a voice.
Scrap the unfair €450 fee for Supplemental ExamsOur University should put the welfare of students at the center of everything that it does. We need a freeze on fees for all students and affordable rental options. We are a collective of undergraduate and postgraduate students in Trinity College Dublin who can no longer stand by and watch the commodification of our education. Last month, in a referendum held by TCDSU 82% of students voted strongly against the implementation of Supplemental Fees. The College Board decided to ignore the voice of the students, and implement Supplemental Fees at a flat rate of €450. Last year, College signed the Student Partnership Agreement, which promises to promote democracy and ensure that students are stakeholders in decisions that College make. Trinity’s decision to introduce supplemental exam fees is evidence of their continuing disregard for students, their opinions, and their welfare. Please sign this petition to show your support of the #TakeBackTrinity campaign. If you are a Trinity student or staff, please sign with your tcd.ie address If you are not please use your preferred email address. We thank you for your support!
Stop the The Data Protection Act 2018!Whilst the rest of the Europe prepares for the introduction of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to protect citizens personal data, Fine Gael right now is trying to exempt itself and Govt from these laws! Given the state of the nation where we see daily evidence of Garda and ministerial corruption including the cover-up of the Mary Boyle child murder case, fraud investigations at the Garda training college, on-going criminal activities within the Dept of social protection, allegations of corruption in NAMA, proof of theft, over changing and illegal home evictions by Govt owned banks and most recently smear campaigns and intimidation of Garda whistle-blowers and jailing of anti-corruption activists this is not the time to give the Govt more cover to hide behind, we need greater full transparency than exists presently. Fine Gael right now is trying to circumnavigate data protection laws including the incoming EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It is trying to do this through the introduction of The Data Protection Bill 2018 which in fact not only weaken Irish citizens’ rights dramatically but also see the Fine Gael government is able to break established laws that it will still meanwhile, demand others to obey. By any stretch of the incoming situation being created by Fine Gael, this is blatant one law for them and another for the rest of the people in Ireland. In short, the Data Protection Act 2018 as it is being presented, waiting to be Dail voted on, is a complete disgrace and is far from acting to the benefit of all. The Irish Council for Civil Liberties says that the bill “impacts fundamental human rights, and on first reading gives rise to serious concerns across a broad range of privacy rights issues”. “The ICCL believes that proper analysis and consideration of these issues is required, and we are concerned at the apparent haste with which the Government is pushing through important legislation in a highly sensitive area.” Independent Senator Alice Mary Higgins has stated: “The bill proposes a number of wide, often vague, exemptions which allow the State and public bodies to override an individual’s right to privacy and data protection and, outrageously, it also seeks to exempt public bodies from fines when they break the rules. No financial consequences are a recipe for disaster.” The bill will see state departments will be unaccountable for passing people’s personal data to others, from one department to another or from a department to private companies. This is unacceptable. Section 54 of the bill will seek to restrict the data rights of individuals regarding GDPR when the state deems at it sees fit, that they should be restricted. This is totally unacceptable. The bill will see that the government can process a person’s data contrary to GDPR where the ‘public interest’ is in question. In other words, Ignore data protection. This too is totally unacceptable. The bill will see allow the new Data Protection Commission to have a discretionary option to not investigate a complaint made to it, as it sees fit. This is just incredible unjust and unacceptable. From the expensive farce that is the Public Service Card (the national identity card in all but name) and its attached new national database, accessible by over 140 various state sections, to the giving away of people’s personal data to private companies like Seetec and Turas Nua in “JobPath”, the rights of the people of Ireland regarding their personal information are disgracefully being watered further down. We therefore call on you NOT to support the Dail passing of the Data Protection Act 2018. If you do this, it is a betrayal of the people of Ireland and an open disregard to the protection of their personal rights. Words by Jeff Rudd
Bin the Spin UnitThe Government’s Strategic Communications Unit is a highly expensive PR Unit, paid for by the taxpayer for the benefit of the Taoiseach and Fine Gael. It is a slap in the face to the Irish taxpayer and it is not acceptable. We call on the Taoiseach to bin the spin - disband the Strategic Communications Unit immediately