Ray Hanrahan

3,000 March in Cork against Household Taxes and Austerity


On Saturday lunchtime about 3,000 citizens marched through the streets of Cork in support of the continuing boycott of the Household Tax and in protest at the sixth straight austerity budget to be imposed on the Irish working class, which was unveiled this week by the Labour/Fine Gael coalition government.

Report on Cork Pride 2012


For the third year in succession the Cork branch of the Workers Solidarity Movement participated in the Cork Pride Parade. Anarchists have been involved in Pride organising in Cork since its beginnings in the mid-noughties and have long seen Pride as both an important civic festival and an opportunity to connect with Cork's burgeoning LGBT community. Cork WSM also distributed a leaflet on Pride and its politics at the parade (see below). The parade was the culmination of a week of hectic activity and celebration by Cork's LGBT community across a number of venues and across a range of activities.

Anti-Household Tax Rally Draws Hundreds in Cork


A bumper crowd of over 400 crammed into the largest function room of Cork's Metropole Hotel to be part of a rally to mark the end of the first phase of the campaign waged against the government's 'Household Charge'. The rally began with a humorous and topical song composed by a campaign supporter, John Murphy, then several speeches from the top table, and was followed by an 'open mike' session where members of the attendance expressed their outrage, anger, and defiance over the imposition of the Household Tax and the implementation of the austerity agenda.

International Women's Day 2012 Celebration at Solidarity Books


As has happened for the last two years, Solidarity Books and Cork WSM hosted an event on the 8th of March to celebrate International Women's Day. This year, Cork WSM members and other activists got together to put on an evening of food, film and discussion in the city's premier radical bookshop and meeting space. Meals were prepared on site and served by Veg Out! and Lentil Disorder, and was enjoyed by a multitude of women and men from the Cork activist scene and beyond. The food fuelled an hour or more of convivial chat, as people reminisced over previous celebrations and cast an eye over feminist-themed displays in various places about the shop space.

Thousands March in Cork to Support Vita Cortex Workers


An estimated 5,000 people marched in the streets of Cork yesterday to show their support for the former workers of the Vita Cortex factory, who have spent nearly 60 days occupying their former workplace as part of a struggle to get their former boss Jack Ronan to pay a €1.2m redundancy package that had been promised to them since last September. The march, organised by the Cork Council of Trade Unions, left from Connolly Hall on Lapp's Quay and concluded at the plaza at the southern end of Grand Parade, via Parnell Place and Patrick St.

Anti-Household Tax Campaign Gathers Momentum in Cork


Cork city and county Anti-Household Tax Campaign rounded off an excellent eight days' work by holding protests in Ballincollig and outside Cork's City Hall this Friday to coincide with taoiseach Enda Kenny's visit to the south. Following on from the massively successful public meeting in the city last Thursday 26th January, 200 people spent well over 2 hours noisily picketing a Chamber of Commerce banquet at City Hall yesterday evening to let Mr. Kenny know the depth of opposition to the Household Tax in the city. Earlier in the day, another 50 people picketed the Oriel House hotel in the commuter belt town of Ballincollig, where he attended another gathering of business people.

Cork: Hundreds Turn Out to Support Vita Cortex Workers


Factory-gate rally draws large support ahead of LRC talks next week


This afternoon, the workers of Vita Cortex in Cork accompanied by several hundred supporters attended a rally at the factory gates on Kinsale Road, which was organised by the Cork Council of Trade Unions. Among the attendance showing their support for the Vita Cortex workers were several former staff from the La Senza lingerie store chain, who themselves were in dispute with the liquidator of their former employer KPMG until this Friday. They were made feel very welcome by the crowd, and the speakers from the impromptu platform in the factory carpark drew inspiration in their speeches from the result achieved by the La Senza workers who were in a similar situation to that facing the 32 Vita Cortex employees. The platform was compered by Pat Guilfoyle of the TEEU, and other speakers were Vita Cortex shop steward Seán Kelleher, president of Cork Council of Trade Unions Ann Piggott, and Joe O'Flynn, general secretary of SIPTU and Cork native. Mr. O'Flynn spoke of the efforts being made by SIPTU headquarters in pursuit of a resolution of this situation, and he castigated runaway employer Jack Ronan for refusing to pay the €1.2m owed to his former employees, a sum described by Mr. O'Flynn as 'not a king's ransom'. He also spoke of the union's determination to support the Vita Cortex workers in their dispute 'for the long haul, if it takes 30 days or 30 weeks, with the support of trade union members across the country'. The rally ended with a long peal of applause as the names of all 32 Vita Cortex workers were read out from the podium.

May Day 2011 Celebrations in Cork


This Sunday, the international celebration of the working class was marked in Cork with the now-traditional May Day march organised by the Independent Workers Union. Cork WSM also marked the occasion by hosting a pair of talks after the march on May Day-related topics at Solidarity Books on Douglas Street. As a finale to the day's festivities, a fundraising cabaret was held for the union and the bookshop that night at the Spailpín Fánach on South Main Street.

International Women's Day 2011 Celebrations in Cork


'Celebrate Revolutionary Women' banner on display outside Solidarity BooksTuesday March 8th was International Women's Day, and to celebrate it Cork WSM and several other organisations in the city organised a number of events in various locations. Ahead of the day on Saturday and Sunday, the Cork Sexual Violence Centre in Camden Quay and the Women's Studies Department of UCC respectively held celebratory events. On the day itself, events marking it were held around the city.

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