Eight housing activists were today acquitted by the Dublin Criminal Court of Justice, relating to a case spanning back seven months ago, when the charge against them of trespass was thrown out of court.
All eight accused had initially set about into investigating whether or not it was feasible to open up, and re-do, one of the 80 unused flats on Charlemont Street, that had been lying empty for over two years or more.
In what can only be described as the worst housing crisis in recent decades, it is nothing short of a crime against humanity that so many homes lie empty across the country.
It is quite clear that laws in Ireland are geared towards protecting the rights in property, more so than people themselves. For instance, why aren’t there any laws preventing homeless people from freezing to death on the streets, but there are plenty of laws preventing people from seeking shelter within the overabundance of empty houses and flats, around the country?
When we have 90,000 people in housing need; when there are more than 230,000 housing and apartments vacant nationwide; when 5,000 human beings are defined as homeless; when 180 people are sleeping rough in Dublin alone; when people dying on our streets, it’s time we started asking why tolerate such a class in society that causes so much pain and suffering.
Today a small blow was struck against social injustice, and the terrible housing conditions we face, tomorrow, another will bring us even further towards achieving decent, and adequate housing for all.