Reports from the first anti-Household tax campaign meetings in Dublin, Cork & Galway


Reports from the first anti-Household tax meetings in Cork, Dublin & Galway.

The campaign against the household and water charges swung into life in Cork during September.  Left group representatives and independent activists met up and agreed to work towards building local groups in as many areas as possible across the city and county. The end of September saw public meetings in Ballyphehane and Dublin Hill / Ballyvolane and between them these attracted close to 80 people. The mood of anger and the eagerness to get stuck into a new campaign was the signal for people in other areas to go ahead and begin organising there; meetings were planned for October and November in Cobh, South Parish, Mayfield and Mahon / Blackrock.
Every community that gets organised over the next 4 to 6 months becomes a huge block to the government’s hopes of milking workers for hundreds of millions more than we’ve already given. The campaign in Cork is operating on the basis of organised mass non-payment of the new charge and on the understanding that we can’t sit around waiting for someone to fight this for us - we all need to get involved and win it for ourselves.  Workers Solidarity Movement will be active in parts of Cork where we have members; help get things into gear wherever you are. 
The background work to establishing the campaign in Dublin has been ongoing since late August.  An interim Steering Committee was set up consisting of representatives of the various left political parties and organisations, residents’ associations and independent activists.  This committee will exist on a temporary basis and has taken on the task of getting the campaign established in every area. 
Public meetings are currently being organised across all communities in the city and counties.  From these meetings local campaign groups are being established, and groups of people are going out knocking on their neighbours’ doors encouraging them to join the campaign.  The campaign in Dublin has the potential to be one of the biggest political campaigns in many years and will in coming months spread into every neighbourhood.
The Galway campaign against the Household Charge began in August, where a small group of around sixteen activists from the Socialist Workers Party, Workers Party, United Left Alliance, Socialist Party and WSM came together to discuss the setting up of a campaign in Galway. From the outset it was decided that the campaign would not be affiliated with any specific political party or organisation. It was also decided that meetings would take place all over Galway and that each area of Galway would form it’s own resistance and support network against the charge.
A lot of effort was put into advertising the meetings. The first of these was held in Westside and was a tremendous success. Over sixty people attended and the speeches were well received. People were given the opportunity to ask questions and to voice their own opinions on the household charge. Much opposition to the charge was voiced, and a strong emphasis was put on talking to friends and neighbours about the campaign. Two other meetings have been held, in Ballybane and Knocknacarra, with turnouts of around 40 people at each. The meetings continue, with several more planned for Salthill and other parts of Galway.

Workers Solidarity Movement members will be active in building the campaign in their own communities and we hope all our readers will do likewise. Please contact us and we’ll put you in touch with your local campaign.


This article is from Issue 124 of Ireland's anarchist paper Workers Solidarity November / December 2011