What’s On This Week | 19-25 April

There's events on green new deals, workers rights, freedom of speech, housing rights.

A clip from a children's story of Lenin and a number of children

“Imaging this: all across rural Ireland, small to medium sized farmers are empowered to grow Hemp and Cannabis. Local small business owners make and sell Hemp and Cannabis products. The resources generated go back into the community; building solar powered schools, making our roads safer, and funding community mental health services.” This is the idea behind Uplift’s Cannabis: A Green New Deal meeting on Tuesday.

As working people have born the brunt of the pandemic, People Before Profit argues that we must stand up and fight back to demand our rights in Workers Demand Our Rights on Wednesday at 7pm.

How do we get more women into politics? That’s the topic of a panel discussion by the Labour Party on Wednesday at 8pm. Now this is just a suggestion, but maybe start with having a think about how cuts to the Lone Parents Allowance might have impacted women.

At 6:30pm on Thursday EPIC – The Irish Emigration Museum is hosting a lecture on Irish Traveller Communities Abroad: Hidden Histories of the Irish Abroad. A welcome broadening of the scope of the usual ‘the Irish abroad’ stories, this lecture will see Dr Maurice J Casey joined by Prof Colin Clark, whose research explores the European Roma, Gypsy and Traveller populations and Dr Sindy Joyce, Human Rights Defender, sociologist, lecturer, activist, and member of the Council of State. Right afterwards, you can head over to Happy Birthday, Lenin! An all-ages celebration of Lenin’s birthday featuring readings from the Soviet children’s classic, Stories of Lenin. A strange but not to miss event!

The book launch of Enforcing Silencing. Academic Freedom, Palestine and the Criticism of Israel is also taking place on Thursday. The edited collection uses the controversies surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to explore the limits placed on academic freedom. It looks at how the neoliberalisation of higher education has shaped the current climate and how academics and their universities should respond to these new threats. At the same time, two independent Wicklow councillors are hosting another housing event, Local Government, Force or Farce?, to look at how local government has had its power taken away.

Maynooth University’s third annual housing conference is called Home: A Human Right and takes place on Thursday and Friday. 

And, of course, there’s the Oireachtas. There’s a motion in the Seanad on Monday recognising that clean water is a basic human right of every inhabitant of this country. Tuesday is the busy day for committees. Civil servants will be in discussing the Loan Guarantee Schemes Agreements Bill 2021 and the chair of the Commission on the Defence forces will be up in front of the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee. There’s also discussion on the National Disability Inclusion Strategy (2017-2021), EU industrial policy priorities, the Sea Fisheries (Amendment) Bill, CAP, and the provision of Special Needs Education.