3 October 2017
SIPTU President calls for alliance of progressive forces to prioritise urgent public investment
‘Public investment is the only way to ensure decent housing, health and education services – tax cuts should be removed from the political agenda’
SIPTU General President Jack O’Connor has called for a new alliance to prioritise public investment in housing, healthcare and education and to guarantee collective bargaining rights for all workers.
Addressing the SIPTU Biennial Delegate Conference in Cork on Monday evening, Jack O’Connor said that public investment is the only way to ensure decent housing, health and education services.
He said that tax cuts should be removed from the political agenda.
“We need to forge a new alliance of genuinely progressive forces to prioritise public investment in housing, healthcare and education and to guarantee full collective bargaining rights for every worker. That should be the priority between now and the centenary of the foundation of the state in 2022, and not any tax-cutting agenda,” he said.
Delivering his final presidential address to the SIPTU Conference, Jack O Connor continued:
“It is absolutely obscene that our major political parties are again promoting a tax-cutting agenda while children are homeless in one of the wealthiest countries in the world.
“It’s a con job! What is actually being perpetrated under the guise of ‘promoting the incentive to work’ or ‘rewarding people’ is a different thing altogether. It’s the criminal degradation of our public services in order to facilitate the wholesale robbery of the people by a veritable army of land hoarders, speculators, licensed drug peddlers and corporate moneylenders!
“It’s time to wake up and smell the roses because, instead of paying tax to fund our public services together as a community, we’re actually ending up paying twice as much – and more – to these legalised bandits.
“That is why we are advancing the proposition that all available resources should be focused on the primary national project of housing our people, caring for the young, the elderly and the ill, supporting our people with disabilities and educating, training and re-skilling our people in order to build a decent society for everyone who lives on the island of Ireland between now and the centenary of the foundation of the state in 2022.
“This would be a laudable project around which we could mobilise as a people and forget about cutting taxes until then.”
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