Press Release

TDs sign up to SIPTU/TEEU referendum pledge to stop privatisation of Irish Water

Date Released: 23 February 2016

TDs from most political parties, and many leading Independents, have signed up to the SIPTU/TEEU Water Guarantee, which commits them to work for a referendum to safeguard public water services from the threat of privatisation if they are elected to the next Dáil.

The political parties, with members in the current Dáil, which have pledged their full support for the Water Guarantee are Sinn Féin and the Social Democrats. Current TDs from Labour, Fianna Fáil and the Anti-Austerity Alliance – People Before Profit have also signed the pledge, as have leading Independents including Clare Daly, Thomas Pringle and Seamus Healy.

SIPTU Public Administration and Communities Division Organiser, John King, said: “SIPTU and TEEU members in the Local Authority Water Services launched the Water Guarantee with a public protest outside Leinster House on 19th January. Since then 41 TDs and many other politicians have signed the pledge that they will work for a referendum to protect public water services.

“The pledge also commits them to seeking the re-designation of Irish Water as a non-commercial state agency as we believe this would demonstrate a recognition and commitment by the Irish State to the provision of water as a human right and not as a commodity sold for profit.”

SIPTU Campaigns and Equality National Organiser, Karan O’Loughlin, said: “The current trajectory of Irish Water represents creeping privatisation by the back door. Along with our colleagues in the broader trade union movement, we asked politicians to commit to give public water services constitutional protection by the holding of a referendum worded as follows:

“The State shall be solely responsible for the direct provision, including transmission, treatment, management and operation of the public water and sanitation supply in the public interest and within the public service. The State shall treat water as an essential resource in the interests of the common good and shall by direct public employment provide for the provision of all water services for the people.”

SIPTU Sector Organiser, Brendan O’Brien said: “All current TDs were contacted by email three times asking them if they supported the Water Guarantee. All Dáil political parties were also contacted and our members around the country also contacted their local elected representatives. Notice was given to TDs last week that the campaign would stop collecting signatures at noon today (Tuesday, 23rd February).

“Current TDs have been given adequate notice of this campaign. We are now advising SIPTU members to bear in mind whether their local TDs have committed to support, or not, the union’s campaign on this crucial issue and vote accordingly on Friday.

“Councillors, senators and some other politicians have also signed the Water Guarantee and their names are available to view on the SIPTU website.”


TDS who have signed the Water Guarantee 


Aodhán Ó Ríordáin

Brendan Ryan

Ciaran Lynch

Emmet Stagg

Jack Wall

Joe Costello

Michael McCarthy

Michael McNamara

Ged Nash

Kathleen Lynch 


Sinn Féin

Aengus Ó Snodaigh 

Brian Stanley

Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin 

Dessie Ellis

Micheal Colreavy

Gerry Adams

Jonathan O Brien

Martin Ferris

Mary Lou Mc Donald

Pádraig MacLochlainn

Peadar Toibin

Pearse Doherty

Sandra McLellan

Sean Crowe


Social Democrats

Stephen Donnelly

Catherine Murphy

Roisin Shortall


Fianna Fáil

Charlie McConalogue

Eamon O'Cuiv

Sean Haughey

Willie O'Dea

Timmy Dooley

Barry Cowen



Clare Daly

Finian McGrath

Seamus Healy

Thomas Pringle

Tommy Broughan

Michael Healy Rae



Richard Boyd Barrett

Paul Murphy


To view the full list of all political that have signed up to the Water Guarantee click here  


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