Ireland - National demonstration over austerity budget and bailout package - November 30, 2010

On Saturday 27 November, the ICTU confederation organised a national demonstration outside Dublin's General Post Office in protest at what is expected to be another austerity budget with major cuts in public spending. The unions claim that the main meeting was attended by more than 100,000 people. As independent media stressed, at the heart of the protest were ordinary people, braving freezing temperatures -- parents with their children, pensioners and young people struggling to find a job. Speakers strongly criticised the government’s four-year plan for economic recovery. ICTU general secretary, David Begg, said the country could not afford to pay the terms of the proposed € 85 billion EU-IMF bailout package. In an interview, SIPTU general president Jack O’Connor branded the package a shameful indictment of the right-wing policies that formed the government’s approach for the last 13 years and which now dominate thinking in EU institutions. Following the mass rally, the UNITE union has called for a “campaign of civil disobedience” ahead of Budget day on 7 December.

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This article was published in the Collective Bargaining Newsletter. It aims to facilitate information exchange between trade unions and to support the work of ETUC's collective bargaining committee. For more information, please contact the editor Maarten van Klaveren, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies (AIAS) You may find further information on the ETUI at, and on the AIAS at © ETUI aisbl, Brussels 2010.

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