LIMERICK trade union members from both the public and private sectors are preparing for the Irish Congress of Trade Union’s for ‘Day of Action against Austerity and Debt’ taking place this Saturday, February 9 at 1.30pm. Unions including SIPTU, CWU, MANDATE, IMPACT, ASTI, UNITE and BATU are supporting the march which is being coordinated locally by the Limerick Council of Trade Unions. People from Clare, Limerick and Tipperary are expected to assemble at the Mechanics Institute on Hartstonge Street in Limerick City for what is expected to be one of the biggest protests seen in the Mid West in recent years.
Frank McDonnell, President of SIPTU’s Limerick District Council, called on SIPTU members throughout the county to support the protest: “Working people have taken enough; we can’t take any more. The recent budget has cost working families around €2,000 a year in additional taxes and cuts. This is all because we have been saddled with a €64 billion bank debt that does not belong to us. We need jobs not cuts.”
“The debt burden affects all of us. That’s why we are calling on everyone who cares about the future for this country and their children to join us next Saturday to send a clear message to the EU, the government and our Minister of Finance that this debt burden must be lifted while those who can afford to pay must be made to pay their fair share.”
The march is one of six taking place throughout the state on the same day and time with the others planned for Galway, Dublin, Cork, Waterford and Sligo.
SIPTU Organiser Paul Gavan confirmed that the protest is open to all groups and individuals who “support the ICTU call for a deal on debt, a jobs stimulus programme, and increased taxation for the wealthy rather than more cuts for working families”.