Small bin tax victory in Dun Laoghaire

Dec 11 2003

Over the past 5 weeks I have got myself a new job. Every Wednesday morning I arise at 7 am and head out to join the brother, along with comrades from the SWP Dun Laoghaire branch (who, in fairness, have gotten up even earlier!) and some local non-payers. Our mission to make sure that every bin on the Granville Road, Doonsalla, Watsons road is lifted whether they have paid some, all or no bin tax.

What we do is walk behind the truck and when the engineer taps a bin for non-collection we fling in the bags and then contact the resident. First week we were on our own but within two weeks most people were coming out and by last week every non payer was out to chuck in their own stuff - some were walking with us to empty other bins - one bought tickets for a benefit for oxygen strikers (next Friday - see the events calendar on indymedia). So emptying the bins, at least, has enabled us to stabilise non-payment, identify the non-payers and motivate them into action. Obviously it's only a few on every street 3-5 in most cases. The areas of non-collection were picked very carefully by the council -private estates in Dalkey, Killiney, Blackrock, Dundrum - where non-payment would be low and the campaign weak.

This morning we arrived down Granville road to meet the truck and two bin men who told us we could go home, as there was no engineer with them. This may just be respite for Christmas and a small break. But there is at least a small possibility that the council has squeezed out what they can here - and that it is not worth the time and trouble to send an engineer out with the truck every week.

Also there is no doubt that on this route non-collection cannot be implemented unless they want to up the ante and return to injunctions and prisons.

One way or another - even if non-collection resumes we now have a core of non- payers who know how to sling a bag into a truck themselves and are more likely to be involved in more campaign activity. For this reason - even in areas of high payment with few campaign members this is a tactic that might be worth trying for a few weeks just to see if people can be got out. Obviously if residents themselves aren't prepared to come out and empty their own bins then it probably isn't worth continuing the fight!


 Much more on the Bin Tax

[A Personal report from a Workers Solidarity Movement member, these reports are posted to the Ainriail list when first written]

To the
News of Irish struggles Index