Up to 10,000 expected at weekend anti-austerity measures march
Up to 10,000 people are expected to take to the streets of Dublin in a weekend protest march against Government austerity measures.
Campaigners and trade unions have organised the mass demonstration for Saturday in a push against the Fine Gael and Labour coalition ahead of Budget day on December 5.
Tommy McKearney, of Campaign Against Household and Water Taxes - one of the organisers - said the march would be a message to the Government that it was not elected to impoverish the people.
"Nor are they there to promote the policies of austerity across Europe by being the example of the poor peasant who would prefer to starve rather than refuse to pay the rent as we may have said in the previous century," said Mr McKearney.
"We're not going to tolerate that as a people. We will challenge and resist this drive towards impoverishing our people by austerity."
Communities Against Cuts, the Dublin Council of Trade Unions (DCTU) and the Spectacle of Defiance and Hope are among the other organisers.
DCTU president Michael O'Reilly warned the Government was likely to introduce a budget that would further cripple the country for a sixth year running.
He said it was unacceptable that 300,000 people are unemployed and that 1 million are living in deprivation following the collapse of the economy.
"That is why we are asking people to join us on November 24 and send a clear message to Government Buildings in advance of the budget," he added.
"We need to change direction and start focusing on growth and investment rather than destructive cuts."
The demonstration will wind through the city centre - starting with speakers at Parnell Square, a march down O'Connell Street and across the Liffey to D'Olier Street before returning to the GPO.
Speakers will include household charge opponent and Socialist Party councillor Ruth Coppinger and a spokesman from the Irish Congress of Trade Unions.
John Bissett, of Spectacle, said the march would also include music from a string quartet and puppets.
"I'm hopeful this will be provocative, interesting and helpful," he said.
The campaigners have called for the Government to protect the poor on Budget day and to avoid the closure of local services, jobs and community projects.
They will also appeal to those taking part to picket the Dail on December 5, as a mark of solidarity against cuts.