People Before Profit activists in the Rathmines area of Dublin are helping to set up a Dublin Tenants Association. A launch meeting attended by Richard Boyd Barret TD, local councillor, Sonya Stapleton, and housing activist Gerard Maher will take place in Devitt’s Pub (upstairs) in Camden Street on Thursday 19th February at 8.30 pm. It is hoped a movement for rent regulation will spread outwards across the city.
People Before Profit in Cork are calling on the management at Cork Institute of Technology to explain the opaque financing and decision-making behind a proposed merger with Tralee Institute of Technology, due to go ahead early next year.
Speaking of the recent statement by the National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP) calling on GPs to reject the Government's proposal for free health care for children under 6, Brian Finucane, of People Before Profit Kerry, said, 'I fully support the recommendation of the NAGP and the rationale they outline. Healthcare and medical support should be provided based on need not on age. The NAGP says it has an ethical and moral responsibility to prevent the introduction of the scheme. I believe the scheme is yet another example of this government prioritising votes over any ethical or moral responsibility.
The arrest and continued detention of Paul Murphy TD and Jobstown resident Scott Masterson prompted the three People Before Profit councilors to walk out of South Dublin County Council's monthly meeting. This walk was an act of solidarity, so they could join the ongoing protest at Tallaght Garda station.
The Cork branch of People Before Profit are calling for a massive outpouring of support on Leeside streets this Saturday, January 31st, as community groups and politicians come together to remind the government that the people will not accept water charges.
In 2014, the government was forced to backtrack on water charges by the sheer numbers who came out on street protests. But they are playing a longer game and are not giving up on their wider plans to make us pay for - and eventually privatise – water.
In the final analysis, our government should be judged by the way it treats children and the elderly. Long hospital waiting lists, schools in substandard buildings, high rates of child poverty, cuts to children's allowance, social welfare and pensions, abolishing the bin charges waivers.... The list goes on.
Mary Hanafin’s latest plan to punish pensioners is indeed part of a pattern.
Hanafin’s scheme will:
* Force everyone who is currently under the age of 49 to work until they are 68. No state pension will be provided until this date – so we can starve, beg or work despite tiredness and ill health.
* Reduced state pension for anyone who do not have 30 years of PRSI payments. If you have lived abroad or have been out of work for long periods, you will face difficulties.
* Reduced occupational pension for anyone entering the public sector. Instead of getting a proportion of your final salary, your pension will be brought down by the number of years you spent on lower wages.
* Forced contributions by workers to the private pension industry. Workers will be ‘auto-enrolled’ into an industry that rips them off and uses their savings to speculate and gamble. Even if you withdraw from a scheme, you will be automatically enrolled every two years and if you forget to withdraw within six months you lose your contributions.
Basin Street/Grand Canal Harbour development
Residents in the Basin Street area asked People Before Profit (PBP) to assist them in challenging the extensive development proposed for the Grand Canal Basin. The planning application did not make any provision for social housing or community gain, nor did it include any information on what residents could expect in relation to construction timing, traffic management or environmental impact. Residents in the area feel they were not adequately consulted with by the developers prior to submitting their application. In total six objections were lodged on behalf of resident associations in the area. Residents are now proposing that a working group be established with the support of PBP to prepare for the outcome of the planning process.
A number of issues have arisen in relation to the Bulfin Estate:
Tenants First has outlined proposals for a public housing strategy to meet the housing crisis.
The report describes current government spend and policy in housing as ‘social welfare for the rich’, including €391m on rent supplement, €169m on tax incentives, €450m on stamp duty loopholes, and €400m unspent in local authority accommodation.