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Government needs to officially recognise the Lockout centenary - Cullinane

23 January, 2013 - by David Cullinane TD

Sinn Féin Senator David Cullinane has today called on the Government to put in place plans to commemorate the centenary of the 1913 lockout.

Speaking during the course of the Order of Business today, the Sinn Féin spokesperson on Workers’ Rights, stated that it is essential that the Government mark the centenary of the industrial dispute, and to afford due recognition of the struggles of those involved in the lockout.

“The 1913 Lockout is likely the most significant dispute in Irish industrial history. The conflict between, Jim Larkin and the industrialist and newspaper owner William Martin Murphy, has become an iconic story, and it affected countless ordinary Irish workers, particularly in Dublin, but also throughout Ireland.

“While it was a time of tremendous hardship and sacrifice for ordinary people, we should recognise and celebrate such a significant event, particularly as it became such a platform for later struggles, and the advancement of the interests of workers since then. It is also an inspiration to us to continue to battle the injustices that still face many workers.

“Therefore, it is incumbent on the Government to commemorate such a historic event in this centenary year. I am calling on the Government to recognise the event both inside and outside these houses.

“In particular, I believe that the Government should invite union leaders and other workers representatives to address the Seanad, and indeed the Dáil, over the course of the next 12 month.

“However the Government should go further than that, and organise public events, such as is being organised by the ICTU, Siptu, and indeed Sinn Féin, so as to bring the story of this struggle to a new generation, and to highlight its legacy.”

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