The SIPTU National Executive Council (NEC) has strongly condemned a recent attack on Janet Horner, a union activist and candidate for the North Inner-City Local Electoral Area in Dublin’s upcoming local council elections.

SIPTU NEC and ICTU Working Group to Combat Far Right Hate and Extremism member, Ciarán McKenna said: “We strongly condemn this attack on our fellow union activist last week as she engaged with her local community as an election candidate in the upcoming council elections. Janet was badly shaken by the confrontation which included a threat to kill her.

“Most worryingly, this is not an isolated incident. It is clear from social media and other reports that several election candidates, nearly all women, have suffered harassment and attacks while putting up posters or canvassing.

“These incidents provide yet more evidence of the growing issue of the racist sentiment which is being deliberately stoked by bad actors in our communities across the country. While the Government’s mismanagement of the issue of migration deserves to be condemned, unfortunately, this situation is being exploited by odious elements who have long sought a way of breaking into the political arena.”

He added: “There are many candidates across the country in both council and European elections running on an agenda of anti-migrant hate. Even more worryingly several election candidates are undeniable members of the extreme right.

“These same elements have long track records of voicing hate towards and intimidation of workers. The labour movement has always stood against those who seek to divide workers and it must continue to do so in a proactive manner.”

Green Party election candidate and SIPTU activist, Janet Horner, said: “The escalating hateful rhetoric we are seeing in our society is seeking to reduce the public space for women and migrants’ involvement in politics. We must take a strong stance against it when it occurs, as it is a threat to the safety of our streets and could develop into a threat to our democracy.”

Horner is a SIPTU activist and member of the Union’s National Equality and Global Solidarity committees.