In this small state, 50,000 people, largely families, face eviction from their homes at the hands of the very banks they – and indeed us all – bailed out only a few years ago when serious mismanagement and recklessness nearly brought down the economy. While Iceland jailed their bankers, we threw money at them. While their bankers ate porridge, we gave them jobs in NAMA, with it since revealed some of the main debtors to NAMA were given bonuses depending on performance in recouping their debts to the state.

In all this, the people who bore the brunt of the bail-out by way of austerity have been the recipient of nothing by way of debt forgiveness. People are sinking in mortgage debt, paying a mortgage for a home valued nowhere near what it was in the so-called boom years. Disposable incomes has shrank to nil and in a consumer-based economy such as Ireland’s this simply has to be a jobs-killer and a road block to economic growth. Of course it isn’t seen that way by those in power when you have the proponents of ‘trickle-down’ economics as senior partners in government.

Something rarely touched on or examined in any great detail is the human cost to this. Broken marriages, suicides, depression etc. are on a steady increase and a big factor in this is the very real threat of eviction for so many. At the forefront of these evictions are parasitic security companies, such as K Tech Security, who have become renowned for their forceful nature in putting families onto the street. This has brought them to the attention of the modern day Land League and others such as ourselves in the 1916 Societies. Having instigated boycotts and protests at the offices of K Tech Security and other forms of peaceful protest to highlight the immoral nature of some aspects of their business, the owner agreed to meet with those who had organised the protests and made a verbal undertaking to cease taking part in eviction-related activities – this has since been reneged on.

It has left us with no option but to continue our protests against K Tech. With their winning the contract for the Irish Country Music Awards in the City West Hotel in Tallaght, we have organised a peaceful protest against their involvement, taking into account their active part in forceful evictions of families from their family home. This has recently been met with solicitors’ letters and now court injunctions by K Tech to stop the protest. This is based on false accusations of internet threats in a vain attempt to discredit what will always be a peaceful protest. It has to be stated this will not deter us from exercising our democratic right to mobilise and protest peacefully.

We live in extraordinary times with the mass-evictors of families now of a homegrown variety. In the days of Michael Davitt, republicans were on the right side of history and today this also has to be the case. We have to take a stand beside people facing down bully-boys in defence of their family home. Solicitors letters and vain attempts at court injunctions to stop peaceful boycotts or protests can be no deterrent to anybody of a progressive nature. The protest is on Monday 26th January, 5pm at the City West Hotel. Join us – come hail, rain or shine (or solicitors letters) – and protest against the lackies of modern-day Ireland, those who would do the bidding of the Charles Trevelyan’s of our times.