071/17 Circular: ADC motion on Right to Protest

To: Branch Secs & Chairs, Executive members
Date: 18th April 2017
Re:  ADC motion on Right to Protest
Circ:  071/17

Dear Colleagues

This year’s ADC passed the following motion calling on our members and the wider trade union movement to defend the ‘right to protest’. It was tabled by the An Post Branch.

This conference notes the decision in the courts to find 17 year old guilty of “false imprisonment” following a protest against the imposition of water charges. It further notes that there will be further trials against adults over the coming months. This conference also notes that this decision and the coming trials could affect the right to protest and in effect make industrial action, and other protest action, either ineffectual or possibly even illegal.

Due to the above this conference instructs the incoming Executive to support the right to protest. This is done by (1) supporting those involved in the protest and to support groups like Jobstown Not Guilty (2) Raising the issue with other trade unions within ICTU.

The CPSU has always defended the right of citizens to public protest. Freedom to take part in peaceful public protest is a central part of the democratic system. Indeed the ability of a union to take part in picketing is an important right we depend on to give expression to our just claims and arguments during industrial action etc.

In this context the organisers of the ‘March for Justice’ which is to be held in Dublin city centre this Saturday April 22nd 2017 have asked that we bring the demonstration to your attention in line with the motion above passed at ADC. The protest assembles at the Central Bank Dame Street at 1 pm.

Please bring this circular to the attention of your members.


Yours Sincerely

Eoin Ronayne

General Secretary