Clare Daly is the independent socialist TD for Dublin North. Formerly a Councillor for the Swords Local Electoral Area, Clare was first elected to Fingal County Council in 1999, and was subsequently re-elected in 2004 and 2009, decisively topping the poll each time before being elected to the Dáil in February 2011.
During the property bubble years Clare was the strongest voice against developer-led planning in Fingal, hosting countless meetings and campaigns for sustainable planning and housing linked to facilities and infrastructure including schools, community and transport links. The legacy of bad planning unfortunately continues to blight our communities. Clare has consistently campaigned alongside residents against rip off management fees and to get unfinished estates made safe and building regulations enforced.
It was as a result of an initiative by Clare, to organise with residents whose homes were structurally damaged with pyrite, that led to the establishment of the Pyrite Action Campaign; which organised residents in all of the affected estates across multiple counties and succeeded in forcing the government to initiate an investigation into the problem.
Clare was to the forefront in the campaign against the Household Tax, she was a member of both the Dublin and National Steering Committees of the Campaign Against Household and Water Taxes, launched in 2011. This tax, which was replaced this year by the hated Property Tax, was strenuously opposed by Clare along with many community activists. Clare is opposed to all moves to introduce water charges as she was previously when she was the co-ordinator of the north Fingal Federation of Dublin, Anti Water Charges Campaign in 1994-1996, which successfully forced the abolition of water charges at that time.
Clare also led the fight against the bin tax in north Fingal. She spent a month in prison in September-October 2003 for refusing to abandon the campaign and the people who elected her. The subsequent privatisation of the bin service has led to rising costs for lifting bins, the introduction of a flat annual charge and the abolishment of the waiver system all of which vindicates the points raised by Clare and the campaign in 2003.
Clare was a shop steward in Aer Lingus for over ten years where she fought tirelessly against job losses and attacks on working conditions throughout Dublin airport. She campaigned against the privatisation of Aer Lingus and the closure of SR Technics. She continues to fight and support workers rights at Dublin Airport and though-out the country.
As the only non government TD in Dublin North, Clare is the most consistent opponent in the area to the savage cuts of the Fine Gael and Labour coalition, including cuts to special needs education, library resources and home help hours. Clare was also very active in the campaigning to oppose the building of a monster sewage treatment plant in North County Dublin.
In the Dáil Clare remains a champion of workers rights and uses the platform and profile to advocate for a fighting response from the Trade Union movement to the disastrous policies of austerity. As a TD Clare has supported the introduction of legislation to prevent animal cruelty, an issue which she has consistently campaigned on for many years. In 2012 Clare was the first TD in the history of the state to introduce pro choice legislation to the houses of the Oireachtas. In 2013 she publicly criticised the Irish governments stance on the use of Shannon Airport by U.S. military aircraft.
Over the course of her time in Dáil Éireann Clare has given consistent vocal support to the Garda Whistle blowers to bring an end to malpractice within An Garda Síochána. She has been highly critical of the department of Justice in its handling of the numerous controversies surrounding An Garda Síochána, GSOC and the relationship between government and high ranking members of the force.
The issue of illegal adoptions carried out in the Irish state by religious and other institutions has been a major issue which Clare will continue to campaign on. Clare has been campaigning for legislation to allow all adoptees access to their birth records, for a full and independent investigation into the mother and baby homes and a for an apology by the state for their role in the exploitation and victimisation of unmarried mothers and the forced and illegal adoptions of their children.