Clondalkin - community action against cuts
200 PEOPLE turned up to a public meeting against cuts in Community Employment Schemes in North Clondalkin, Dublin, in July. This is an indication of the latent anger that exists because of the pro-rich bias of this government.
By Councillor Ruth Coppinger
A "roll call of cuts" for community projects in the area was published at the meeting. In an area devastated by unemployment over the years and fed the "droppings" of the Celtic Tiger, people were incensed that the paltry funding for centres for the unemployed, sports centres, women's development groups, childcare centres, community and youth facilities are now faced with cuts and a freeze on staffing.
Mary Harney, whose Mid West constituency covers much of Clondalkin, was a focus of the meeting. Harney backtracked on these cuts before the general election last year, but is now ploughing ahead with her usual anti-working class agenda.
The meeting was organised by Action Against Cuts in Community Services (AACCS), a coalition of all the affected services in North Clondalkin. It was very well organised. One woman who spoke from the floor began and finished her contribution with "Up the revolution". A theme throughout was that it was the people of the area who had given their time and energy to establish the facilities that existed, not a benevolent government, who had neglected the area for years. Voting registration forms were also distributed to sign people up to vote in next year's local elections.
A steering committee now plans to consider proposals for campaigning, including pickets on Harney's clinic, street protests and the possibility of linking up with other affected community projects in Dublin. The Socialist Party pledged to give any assistance sought by the campaign.
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