[Sinn Fein]

13 March 2001

New laws on O'Connell Street protests would tie Jim Larkin in red tape

Sinn Fein councillors to fight GPO restrictions

Sinn Fein councillors have accused Dublin Corporation officials of ``trying to keep democratic protests away from O'Connell Street and the GPO by tying them up in red tape''.

Dublin City Sinn Fein Cllrs Nicky Kehoe and Christy Burke said they will be opposing the move when it comes before Dublin Corporation's Central Area Committee this afternoon (3pm).  Cllr Nicky Kehoe said:

``The demand for a 2,000 bond for marches of more than 50 people would be beyond the reach of most community or campaign groups.  The law for rallies of 300 people to be covered by a 3 million insurance indemnity, traffic management and event management plans, a safety statement and cleansing arrangements is an attempt to strangle free speech with red tape.  Most grass-roots community groups campaigning on social and environmental issues such as housing, traffic, drugs or incinerators won't be able to handle that.

``Jim Larkin, whose statue stands in O'Connell Street, wouldn't have met Dublin Corporation's repressive restrictions of democratic protest - many Dubliners today won't be able to either.''  ENDS

Details - Cllr Nicky Kehoe @ 086 854 1942

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