A letter I sent to the Irish Times on 24 December 2009
Fintan O’Toole’s (spot-on as ever) article on the ironies of the Bishops’ multiculturalism (December 22, 2009, http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2009/1222/1224261109443.html) has broader ironic implications.
One irony relates to the church’s role in migrant integration. Having lost their key role in education and health service provision, Catholic religious orders have been working with migrants, refugees and asylum seekers. While extremely useful, many of the projects initiated by relilgious orders are run by white, Christian, settled Irish people, without giving leadership roles to migrants and other racialised people. This top down, and at time destructive approach means that migrants have little say in how these organisations are
funded and run. Read more
Paddy Healy published addresses of TDs, asking people to email their TDs protesting the budget. So this is what I just sent to Chris Andrews (Fianna Fail) and John Gormley (Green Party):
Dear John and Chris
As your constituent, let me express my revulsion at the budget which has targeted the poorest and weakest in society.
As a public sector worker, I accept that high earners should bear the brunt, but introducing an extra income tax band for those earning over €100,000 (a category, which, by the way, includes me) would have brought €2bn in revenue without cutting disability and unemployment allowances, children’s allowances and taxing low paid workers. Read more
After weeks of speculations, the Minister for Finance delivered his verdict, targeting public sector workers, unemployment allowances, children’s allowances, medical card holders, and other recipients of welfare allowances.
Yes, he did reduce public sector workers progressively – some high earners will lose more money, but lower earners will lose more proportionately. Read more