Clare Daly calls on the Minister for Arts Heritage and the Gaelteacht to prevent eviction of barge dwellers at Lowtown Marina in Naas
“Residents moored at Lowtown Marina near Naas in County Kildare have without warning been told by Waterways Ireland that they will be asked to quit by the end of this month without any alternative arrangements being offered.
“They are being told that they must do this because the area is to be redeveloped. To date residents paid a company Lowtown Marina Ltd for the right to moor there. It is their home and recognised as such by An Post, the Department of Social Welfare and the HSE.
“Residents have found that representatives from Waterways Ireland are reluctant to properly engage directly with them. This is a very high handed approach which residents I have been in touch with won’t take lying down. Efforts by my own office to talk to officials in Waterways Ireland have proven fruitless. I have therefore tabled a question to the Minister for Arts Heritage and the Gaelteacht which has oversight over Waterways Ireland, asking him to intervene and make a statement on the matter.”
Socialist Party TD calls on Stobarts to grant union recognition and rostering rights to truck drivers ahead of strike action tomorrow
“The strike action being taken tomorrow by truck drivers employed by Stobart in Ballymun is 100% justified. As a company that makes goods deliveries to Tescos they are supposedly party to an ethical guideline whereby they recognise the union to which their employees belong. Indeed in the nearby Donabate depot Stobarts recognise SIPTU.
“The key issue however over which the dispute is taking place is the absence of regular rostering for the workers whereby they are only informed on a day by day basis the precise times of the shifts they work. This makes it impossible for them to make any plans in their private and family lives. There are also real health and safety concerns on the part of the workers given the erratic shifts they end up being asked to work.
“Again like the recognition issue Storbart’s do afford proper rostering to drivers in the Donabate depot. I hope the picket tomorrow, which is the second day of strike action will force the company to settle with the drivers. I deplore their attempt to employ strike breaking labour from Britain on the last day of action.
“I also condemn the granting of an injunction by the courts that seeks to prevent effective picketing of the depot. It is again another example of how the laws and in particular the Industrial Relations Act serves the employer class in this country.”
Clare Daly Socialist Party/United Left Alliance TD called on the State to fully acknowledge the barbarity of the practice of symphysiotomy and to afford victims the full rights of redress.
Speaking in the Dail today, Clare Daly, said, “This is an important step towards an acknowledgement by the State of the crimes committed against these women. Symphysiotomy was the butchering of women’s’ bodies, for no medical reason, without their consent.”
Calling attention to the women in the gallery, many of whom had been suffering and fighting for access to justice for many years, Daly stated, “This barbaric act is part of our living history and the women in the gallery are living proof of that”. Daly called for full redress to be available to these women who were victims of a violation of human rights.
She said, “I call for the Statute of Limitations to be changed so that survivors can take legal action, but more than this, for the women to have access to compensation and for these crimes of the Irish Stateto be fully acknowledged and never repeated.” Cllr Melisa Halpin from People Before Profit/United Left Alliance, said, “These women have been sentenced to a lifetime of pain due to a horrific procedure that had no medical necessity”.
“This practice was part of an ethos of controlling the reproductive rights of women. That ethos and the control of our hospitals by religious institutions allowed this practice to continue decades after it was banned in other European countries. That institutional control remains in place. We need a patient centred ethos not a religious centred ethos to dominate out hospitals and medical system. That’s why we need a state run, fully public, accountable and transparent medical system established in Ireland”.
This morning, Wednesday 14th March, a large force of Gardai sealed off a country lane leading to the home of Mr Lee Wellstead and then, according to neighbours, forced entry by kicking down the front door. The repossession of the property and the eviction of Mr Wellstead and his young daughter were carried out on behalf of Ulster Bank, which is a subsidiary of Royal Bank of Scotland, which was nationalised by the British government as part of the bail out of banks in Britain. In February the Defend Our Homes League mounted a protest at this property contesting the legality of the repossession order issued not by a judge but by the County Registrar. There is a legal question, to be contested in the High Court in April, as to whether a Sheriff, County Registrar or any court below the High Court can issue repossession orders for properties valued above €36,000. In the event the Deputy County Registrar did not serve the repossession order on Mr Wellstead on that occasion. In the mean time Ulster Bank had agreed to a meeting with ULA TDs Joan Collins and Clare Daly to discuss their policies in relation to mortgage arrears.
Speaking in the Dail today Joan Collins TD said “She was appalled and outraged by this eviction of Lee Wellstead and his daughter from their family home. Where have we come to as a nation when the Gardai act as eviction bailiffs for a British state owned bank? Have they forgotten our history as a people? “
Speaking in the same debate Clare Daly TD noted “in today’s papers that the banks are demanding, only two months after they were introduced, a change in the Central Banks code of conduct to allow them greater power to contact/harass home owners with arrears. All the cards are in the hands of the banks in this crisis, yet they see the limited protection for home owners in the code of conduct as an obstacle to them wringing every last cent they can out of distressed
The Defend Our Homes League has called a protest to take place this Friday at 10.30 am at the O’Connell Street branch of Ulster Bank.