Bill to curb 'anti-homeless devices' launched as Fine Gael criticised on housing crisis

This morning outside Gandon House Solidarity TDs Mick Barry, Ruth Coppinger and Paul Murphy launched the Planning & Development (Amendment) Bill 2017 which aims to prevent the installation of anti-homeless devices, or so-called 'defensive architecture'. This has seen public buildings and companies in city centres install spikes, sprinklers, studs and bars which are intended to deter rough sleepers.

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"Is this campaign against the homeless what Varadkar pays €5million for?" TD accuses Taoiseach of spin campaign

This week has seen a number of public comments on the housing and homelessness crisis by senior politicians and high ranking officials in state agencies responsible for housing and homelessness. This has led to accusations that a 'spin campaign is underway to change the narrative' on the crisis. 

 

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Paradise Papers - "The system is rigged in favour of the rich"

The Paradise Papers, which were released on Sunday, have shone a light on the secretive tax avoidance measures by the wealthy and major corporations. These latest leaks follow on from the Panama Papers which highlighted the use of the secretive tax haven.  
More information will be released over the coming days which will put more focus on wealthy Irish people and companies based here. 

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'Slum-landlords should face prison and fines' - Pressure on government after housing investigation

The RTE Prime Time Investigates programme exposed shocking conditions in the private rented sector with scenes of dangerous overcrowding, poor living conditions and a lack of enforcement of housing regulations. 

The programme showed tenants who are sharing accommodation in 3 or 4 bedroom houses with 50 to 60 other people in barracks-like conditions.

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New poll on abortion shows support for Citizens' Assembly Recommendations

A new Amnesty/Red C opinion poll shows that 60% of people support abortion at the request of the pregnant person themselves. This is in line with the recommendations of the Citizens' Assembly which are currently being discussed by an Oireachtas Committee which will decide on the wording of any referendum to repeal the 8th Amednment.

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'Government policy is responsible for this strike'; Calls for Minister Ross to apologise to the public

Irish Rail workers will today take the first of 5 days of national strike action in their dispute with the company and government over a wage increase.

Talks between workers' unions, the company and the government broke down, with the company standing accused of 'collapsing' the talks.

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"The Defence Forces has been turned into a JobBridge" - report highlights low pay in the army

A new report entitled "Workplace Climate in the Defence Forces Phase Two: Results of the Focus Group Research" published by academics from the University of Limerick and based on information provided by 600 Defence Forces personnel between Nov 2016 and Jan 2017 has led to calls for pay increases for the Defence Forces and for them to have full trade union rights.

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'Break up the Banksters Cartel': Calls for action following tracker mortgages scandal

The latest banking scandal has led to calls for a criminal investigation into potential fraud by the banks. It has emerged tens of thousands of families were wrongfully removed from, or not offered, tracker mortgage interest rates costing them thousands of Euro. Now Solidarity has called for action against what they have called a 'banksters cartel'.

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Solidarity claim 'back door for water charges' included in Water Services Bill

Fianna Fail and the government have been accused of trying to leave a 'back door open' for the possible return of water charges ahead of a vote on the Water Services Bill 2017.

The Bill will officially end the water charges regime which was introduced a number of years ago, it will also allow for a refunds to be paid to those who paid their charges. However, campaigners say that a proposed 'excessive usage charge' is an attempt to keep water charges on the agenda despite the mass movement of non-payment and protest.

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'Ophelia is just the beginning': Warnings raised of further threats from climate change

Ireland could face more severe weather threats like Hurricane Ophelia as a result of climate change, it has been warned. Last week the Citizens Assembly was told that ireland has to preapre for "a 30% increase in rainfall and floods". This has lead to calls from Solidarity for major "investment now... to prepare for further extreme weather events in the future".

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