In a poll carried out over the last 24 hours, we asked IrishCentral readers if they "support the Irish demonstrating at the Occupy Dame Street protest in Dublin". From a total of 2,650 votes, 88 percent of the readers said they supported the group of demonstrators camping in front of Dublin’s Central Bank.
The poll showed that 76 percent of IrishCentral readers support the protest “100 percent” with 12 percent responding that they agreed with the group’s mission.
Placards and posters surrounding the 20 tent camp slate the corruption of the Irish Government and call for the nationalization of big industries.
The group have laid out their manifesto in four points, according to reports from RTE. The group is protesting against financial greed and corruption. Their four points of protest include:
- that the EU and IMF “stay out of Ireland’s affairs”
- an end to the burden of private debt on the people of Ireland
- the return of ownership of Ireland’s oil and gas reserves to the people of Ireland
- a “real participatory democracy” for Ireland
Only six percent of Irish readers said that they did not support the protest which started on Saturday, mirroring the month-long New York protest, Occupy Wall Street. In the IrishCentral poll, one percent said they did not agree with the Dublin protest and five percent said the protesters were “just a bunch of hippies”.
Civil Servant Terry Murphy (24) from Clondalkin, south Dublin, who has joined the protesters, explained “It's a very individual protest in the sense that everyone has their own requests but we all agree on the basics."
On Tuesday, protester Michelle Lawlor (35) spoke to the Evening Herald. The Dublin-based mother and nurse said the reason she joined the protesters was her three-year-old son, Tom.
She said “I have to think about the kind of life my son will have and how the actions we are taking now will affect his opportunities and his quality of life in the future.
"Occupy Wall Street started as a huge movement in America and it's spread thanks to Twitter, so my husband, [former engineer and IT student] Daragh (38) and I have been keeping abreast of the events online and decided to come down to the one in Dublin.
"We drop things down to help the protesters so they can carry on. I come down with Tom every day to show support for their cause.
"I'm a nurse, I work for the HSE and we would have been affected by the moratorium -- there's an awful lot of pressure on young graduates who are qualified but cannot find work here, and on us, because we have less people on the ground.
"It's hard to keep up the level of service that we had, and it should be a cause for concern -- where is all that money we are paying going to?"
The protests will continue for the rest of this week with other demonstrations taking place in Cork and across the country over the next week.
Organizers say that so far 1,000 people have passed through the group since Saturday. There are now about 20 tents bound together with rope and duct tape.
The camp has organized its 50 residents into working groups such as construction, security, media, health and safety, and the food committee. The group’s members hold meetings at 1pm and 6pm where anyone can speak their mind and address the group.
The group say they have no intention of moving on from the plaza outside Central Bank. They have praised the generosity of the public who have donated camping equipment and food. An anonymous person has even set them up with free wi-fi interet. Protestors are now seeking donations to hire a port-a-loo and generator.
For a live feed of videos and information from the protesters click here.