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Occupy Galway requested to leave Eyre Square

category galway | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Thursday March 08, 2012 14:42author by Tracy - Occupy Galwayauthor email info at occupygalway dot org Report this post to the editors

This is a copy of an email sent to our supporters today, we are appealing for people to come down to the camp in Galway and show their solidarity, or to help in any way they feel they can.

Dear Supporters,

As you may have heard Occupy Dame Street was cleared by the Gardai at 3am this morning. Earlier today, Occupy Galway received the following letter from Galway City Council;

Adressed to "Members of Occupy Galway" "Re: Illegal encampment, Dear Sirs, I refer to previous discussions with members of your group regarding the illegal encampment at Eyre Square and to the request by an official of the council that you vacate the encampment and remove all wooden pallets and other hardware in and around the camp. I am once again formally requesting the immediate vacation of the camp and the removal of all tents, pallets and other hardware and equipment in and around Kennedy Park, Eyre Square, Galway. You encampment is a serious risk to public health and safety, both to those in occupation and to those in the vicinity.Failure to comply with this request fortwith will result in the appropriate legal action being taken against you. Yours sincerely, Ciaran Hayes Director of services"
No specification of what the health and safety risks are, no explanation of how the camp is illegal.

We would like to make a few points on this letter.
Firstly, at no point have the council discussed the issue of us moving, no councillor or council official has been to the camp to discuss the matter with us at any time and there has never been a request by an official that we are aware of.
We were facilitated in moving to our present position by both the Christmas Market organisers and the council, who removed a bicycle rack. We have an email that states that we could use the area up to the benches at the front of the camp, which we have never used because we didn't want to be in the way of the public.
We requested that the council health and safety officials visit the camp to ensure that we were complying with safety regulations several weeks ago but had no reply. Approximately 3 weeks ago, after we had heard via local radio that the council were intending on moving us, two health and safety officials arrived and inspected the camp. No report was given and we were certainly not advised of any 'serious' health and safety risks and we have heard nothing from them since.
The Chief Superintendant of Galway Gardai has said on several occasions to the council and local press that we are breaking no laws and there have been no complaints.
The camp has been in place for five months, surely if it posed a serious risk to the public we should have been advised long before now.

We hope we can count on your support now, please pop down to the camp if you are able to or phone Galway City Council to voice your support, or pass this on to anyone that you feel might be able to come down to camp. The more people about the better, lets show them that there is support for the Occupy Movement in Ireland.

We will keep you updated when we have further news.

Kind regards
Occupy Galway

UPDATE: Councillor Padraig Coneely speaks to morning Ireland about Occupy Galway. This is a MUST hear!

author by leftypublication date Thu Mar 08, 2012 19:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Galway advertiser had a substantial one sided post this week outlining the arguments as to why the occupy Galway should be removed from eyre square. I think the powers that be are worried that the movement may become a nexus for the household charge / sewerage tank / water charges / turf campaigns. Also the huge payout this month to german banks. They thought the cold winter would finish the movement off without action on their part, but now they are worried it will only learn and grow. They need to break this up before it's too late. They don't mind a march or a quick protest that's over quickly and forgotten but heaven forbid people have a central space where the public can come and go and chat about what is going on with other like minded and increasingly politically aware people on an ongoing basis gaining momentum. That concept is much more of a threat than an occasional protest that can be easily ignored.

Evidently there is some co-ordination involved here in removing the threat. Perhaps could mount an email campaign to complement any physical solidarity campaign to prevent removal of the camp. Alas I don't think you can count on the state being civil about this. They will play dirty. It will happen in the night at 3am like in dame street. 100 garda will arrive and dismantle the camp. Such is the lie of democracy in Ireland today.

I think if people in Galway want to support this movement they need to get down and make their physical presence felt. Show these stuffed shirts like councillor crowe that he is clearly not acting on behalf of the citizens and he has no right to remove the camp.

author by Anti-Fantasist Actionpublication date Thu Mar 08, 2012 19:45author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"they are worried it will only learn and grow"

Put simply, that's wishful thinking.

Occupy Dame Street had pretty much collapsed. Most people had abandoned the camp, which it made it easier for the Gardai to remove it.

If anything, the 'eviction' might serve as a kick up the ass for people to reassess what went wrong with the camp, and where things should go.

author by leftypublication date Thu Mar 08, 2012 20:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Galway camp is a growing and getting better. They have built a solid well organised camp in Eyre square. They aren't going away any time soon. Clearly In their case the opposite is true. They are growing not withering. A great bunch of people. No wonder the council are getting a little worried. Kudos to all involved.

Regarding dame street, I think you need to substantiate your claim that they were on the rocks.

The facts seem to indicate otherwise. They were forcibly evicted at 3am by 100 garda. You don't need 100 garda at 3am to remove an abandoned camp. Evidently the state thought that they were a force to be reckoned with so they sent a substantial number of garda. Also, evidently the state thought that they had considerable support amongst the public hence they did it at 3am when there would be few members of the public about to come to the aid of the camp and question the eviction.

author by Tracy - Occupy Galwaypublication date Fri Mar 09, 2012 15:51author email info at occupygalway dot orgauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Earlier today, Occupy Galway hand delivered the following response to Mr Hayes at Galway City Council;

9 MARCH 2012.

Dear Sir,

Thank you for your letter of 5th March, which we received on the 8th March.

In regards to the first paragraph of your letter, we have had NO formal discussions regarding our protest.
The legality, or otherwise, of our protest has yet to be established. We believe that we are within our rights to protest under Article 40 of the Constitution.

Regarding the second paragraph of your letter, you have NOT previously formally requested the removal of the camp.

As to whether or not we are a “serious risk to public health and safety”, could you please outline whatever concerns you may have and we will endeavour to rectify whatever is necessary.

As you are aware a letter was sent on our behalf, dated 12th January, requesting such a Health & Safety inspection.

Since your officials called, on the 14th February, we have received NO formal notice of inspection or requests for any necessary changes,or improvements.

As you are also probably aware, two senior Gardai have been quoted in local media recently as saying that we are not acting illegally. This was also stated at the council’s own Justice & Policing committee.

It has also been suggested that Eyre Square is ,in fact, safer and cleaner since our protest began on October 15.

Thank you for your interest in Occupy Galway. If you have any other queries please contact us.

Related Link:
author by opus diablos - the regressive hypocrite partypublication date Sat Mar 10, 2012 06:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

...or focusing on is the sinister nature of the timing...3-4 am is pure GMT....Gestapo Main Time for picking up dissidents..

This is not being emphasised...a peaceful, lawful objection to mega white-collar, organised multinational crime is now suppressed violently in the dead of night by our incorporated guardians of the public peace in the centre of the capital city....and our democratic media watchdogs snooze away barkless without apparently noticing....

We're back at the frog being dropped into cold water and the temperature being raised so slowly he doesn't notice until his soup boils.

This is precisely how fascisms evolve by stealth and with the nodded consent of their somnolent populations...Shellmullet is now uber alles.

The blueshirts are a delightful pastel shade this season.

author by W. Finnertypublication date Sat Mar 10, 2012 14:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Reference to statement by Tracy at Fri Mar 09, 2012 15:51.

I'm really pleased to see this statement of yours referring to "Article 40 of the Constitution". This is because I've long believed the only protest groups that stand ANY chance at all of real and lasting success, are the ones who learn to fight for their legal rights using Bunreacht na hEireann (the Supreme Law of the Republic of Ireland).

That said, attempts to use this approach are awash with major and dangerous difficulties at the present time; and, one of the really big challenges for protesters, and isolated stand-alone whistleblowers (such as myself), who try to expose and/or challenge "Government Wrongdoing" relating to violations of our Constitution, is that the legal professions (here and elsewhere) will not -- generally speaking -- and in so far as I am aware, support any individual, or group of individuals, who is/are openly attempting to use Bunreacht na hEireann in support of their efforts to stop Government (Executive, Legislative, and PARTICULARLY Judicial) wrongdoing.

All of my lengthy research into this extremely serious (and nasty!!) set of social problems, which dates back to at least April 2002 in my own particular case, suggests the reason for this almost unbelievable situation is connected with the fact (as I see things) that the "Global Banking Cartel" has, for all practical purposes, very successfully hi-jacked the Constitution of the Republic of Ireland (in the sense of disabling it for their own unlawful purposes); and, that for reasons best known to themselves, our legal profession is in no hurry whatsoever to take it back off them.

In my opinion, something is VERY, VERY rotten in the State of the Republic of Ireland, and it has been that way for the past several years (and possibly several decades perhaps).

Earlier today, I have tried once again to point out this truly destructive and shocking, and ongoing, state of social affairs to our TDs, using two separate e-mails. Copies of the two e-mails used can be found at the following Internet locations:

Group A set of TDs:

Group B set of TDs:

author by leftypublication date Sat Mar 10, 2012 15:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

If you are thinking of taking on Galway city council in the courts you should read this:

Be very afraid! The council have no scruples in blowing 1.5 million of taxpayers money on a stupid unnecessary courtcase against a company who is insolvent, with no possible return on that legal investment for Galway taxpayers. This piled on an already over extravagant and over budget project

Obviously they don't realise that this is real money that could be spent on real services. Its all just monopoly money to these people.

So...They will be spending your money to help usurp your rights in the courts. And they have clearly shown how willing they are to spend ridiculous amounts of taxpayers money on pointless legal cases. They can't lose!

author by Anti-Fantasist Actionpublication date Sun Mar 11, 2012 19:48author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Regarding dame street, I think you need to substantiate your claim that they were on the rocks. The facts seem to indicate otherwise. "

What facts would those be?

There were about a dozen people in the camp were the Gardai came - according to the WSM report, &reports from people on Facebook (people who would be generally supportive of ODS). The General Assemblies had pretty much stopped. To suggest that ODS wasn't in serious decline is delusional. All you had to do was walk past it to see it for yourself.

Ironically, the eviction could be the best thing to happen the Occupy 'movement', if it leads to a reassessment of it strengths/weaknesses, and where it should go.

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