Dublin: Grassroots Mobilisation Against Pension Levy And Budget Cuts


Like many other trade unionists, our members voted overwhelmingly for industrial action against the pension levy. We thought that the trade union movement was serious about standing up for the interests of its membership. We did not think that the ICTU leaders could be so foolish as to throw away the energy and enthusiasm that was on display on the huge march on February 21st. But they did - for a promise of a ‘social pact’ with a government that is imposing wage cuts.No other government in Europe has been so determined to continue the old neo-liberal agenda. Yet no other government in history has ever gotten out of a recession by slashing public spending.

The ICTU’s failure of leadership has brought about a lowering of morale throughout our movement.

This in turn has only encouraged the government to attack PAYE workers in order to support their wealthy friends in the banks. These attacks will only decrease consumer demand and make the recession worse. We fully expect the government to come back in December with even more drastic cuts.

The Education Branch of SIPTU believes that our movement needs to re-mobilise on the streets. If we meekly accept our lot, it will only further encourage this government to intensify its attacks.

We would like to discuss these ideas with other trade unionists and would welcome your suggestion and input. We ourselves believe that we should consider a grassroots union mobilisation on May 16th which is a day of European wide mobilisation called by the European Trade Union Congress on the theme: Fight the Crisis: Put People First.

We propose the theme of the mobilisation in Ireland be: Stop the Bail Out of the Banks; No Wage Cuts or levies; Put People First.

The main thing, however, is to come together to discuss what needs to be done about the lack of leadership from the ICTU. We therefore invite you to come to a meeting on Monday April 27th at 7.30 in Liberty Hall to discuss the idea of a mobilisation and any other suggestions you wish to raise.


On Behalf of the Education Branch Committee SIPTU

Paul Shiels, SIPTU Rep TCD
Victor Scales, Branch Committee
Alan MacSimon Branch Committee
Kieran Allen, President UCD SIPTU and Branch
Tommy Murtagh, Secretary UCD SIPTU and Branch Committee
Sabina Stan, DCU rep