Date Released: 26 November 2012
Over 15,000 people marched through Dublin city centre on Saturday, 24th November, to voice their opposition to austerity and call for a new course for the Irish economy.
The demonstrators were led by activists from the Spectacle of Defiance and Hope, including a young woman wearing a white mask and riding a dark horse with a banner reading "No to austerity" draped around it.
The march was organised by the Dublin Council of Trade Unions and supported by the ICTU, SIPTU and other trade unions, political parties, the Irish National Organisation of the Unemployed and groups and individuals from around the country.
Michael O’Reilly, President of the Dublin Council of Trade Unions (DCTU) said it was just one step in a long campaign to reverse cutbacks.
“The evidence is clear - you cannot cut your way out of a recession,” he told protesters gathered outside the GPO on O’Connell Street.
“On the contrary: with each cut in public spending, and with each euro taken out of the pockets of low and average earners in new or increased taxes, we are digging ourselves further into a hole.”
ICTU President, Eugene McGlone, told the crowd that the only way people could organise an effective resistance to austerity was by getting involved in their trade unions. The crowd was also addressed by representatives of community campaigns.
Initially McGlone had been jeered by a small section of the crowd demanding a general strike.
Later, SIPTU President, Jack O’Connor, condemned the actions of this section of the crowd stating that, “The time has come to draw a line on the activities of this tiny minority who would deny the right to freedom of speech and which, once again has tried to besmirch a demonstration against the failed one sided austerity approach.”