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Second Irish Social Forum

category dublin | public consultation / irish social forum | press release author Friday August 27, 2004 18:03author by Liz Curry - Dublin Social Forumauthor email keykiet at yahoo dot com Report this post to the editors

This is an invite to the second Irish Social Forum to be held Fri 8th Oct to Sun 10th. in UCD & the ATGWU.

Last year's Social Forum was a great mix of activists, anarchists, NGO's & everyone & anyone interested in discussing current issues too important to leave up to politicians.
The Social Forum is also a great way of finding volunteers, getting ideas & inspiration & sharing resources.

A critcism of many "progressives" is that we know what we are against but what are we for? Any opposition can criticise but do we have practical alternatives?
The Social Forum is a space to discuss workable alternatives and find others also willing to help implement them.
The slogan of the World Social Forum is "Another World is Possible" .
More optimistically Another World is Happening right now everywhere where people are taking responsibility for & charge of their own communities, workplaces etc.

All are welcome to the Social Forum. If you or your organization is interested in doing a workshop please get in contact. Meetings are every Mon. all welcome.
Details are in the attached invite.
See you Oct. 8th,
Liz Curry.

...for Irish civil society to build an Irish Social Forum

Invitation to
Irish Social Forum Summit
Oct 8-10th 2004, Dublin

The Irish Social Forum is a gathering for everyone concerned with war, racism and the implications of corporate-led globalisation i.e. neoliberalism. It is a space to bring together everyone who wants to see global justice, workers’ rights and a sustainable society.

Following the success of the first ISF Co-operation and Solidarity Summit of October 17-19th 2003, plans are now well underway to organise this year’s summit in Dublin with UCD featuring as the main venue.

This is an opportunity for people from around Ireland to come together to engage in debate, organise action and build networks to strengthen the global justice movement. It will also feature music and film showings celebrating the global movement.

The Irish Social Forum process

So what is the Irish Social Forum?
Launched on July 6th 2003, the Irish Social Forum is a process for the various sectors of Irish civil society to come together to share concerns and analysis, to exchange ideas and experiences, and to build alliances in order to offer alternatives to the implications of neoliberalism. Last year’s summit was attended by almost four hundred people and featured workshops on a variety of issues such as prison privatisation plans, intellectual property, farmers’ issues North and South, the trade union movement and young people, GATS, West Papua, and feminist organisations. The ISF draws its inspiration and energy from the international movement of social forums, such as the World Social Forum and the European Social Forum, which together are strengthening and uniting civil society in the belief that “another world is possible”.

This year’s European Social Forum will take place in London on October 14-17th 2004.

So how does the Irish Social Forum process work?
• The ISF is a local edition of the World Social Forum.
• It is not a group or an organisation. It does not constitute a locus of power to be disputed by the participants in its meetings, nor does it intend to constitute the only option for interrelation and action by the groups and movements that participate in it.
• It is an open forum for the democratic debate and public expression of the views of groups working on the key issues felt and experienced by ordinary Irish people.
• It is not restricted e.g. to voluntary activity or particular professions, but aims to make links across our different ways of organising and operating.
• Other social forums have since emerged throughout the country, e.g. the Northeast Social Forum, the Cork Social Forum and the South East Social Forum.

Fri Oct 8th: Introduction to the Social Forum with music and films
Sat Oct 9th: Speakers and open floor discussion on Multiculturalism and approaches to dealing with Racism
All day Workshops
Sun Oct 10th: Different forms of Opposition to Neoliberalism

We now invite you and groups to shape the content of the social forum by getting involved. Contact us with your ideas, come to the meetings, the summit or propose a workshop.
For more information please contact Interim Convenor Barry Finnegan on 085 – 142 3454 or

author by Eilis - nonepublication date Fri Aug 27, 2004 19:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This is typical of Dublin-centric Left in Ireland - for those of us living outside of Dublin, we have to choose between the Irish Social Forum or the European one as they are on consecutive weekends. Many, if not most, people cannot afford to go away two weekends in a row. For those of us with kids (for the women with kids, that is!) the additional costs and hassle of organising childcare make it even more difficult.

author by seedotpublication date Sat Aug 28, 2004 14:34author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Eilis, this has got to be the most pointless post on Indymedia in a while. The Dublin based group organising the Dublin located social forum are criticised for being Dublin-centric - not because of where the social forum is going to be but rather because it is the weekend before another event in London. Well the w/end after that the GG is in Belfast, the w/end before the ISF UCD is not available because there is an Irish Education Forum there, the same w/end as the ISF the SIPTU Regional conference is on in Dublin and my uncles birthday happens right in the middle of the ESF. But does that bastard Ken Livingstone care? No, he's too london - centric.

But the bit that really annoyed me
"For those of us with kids (for the women with kids, that is!) " blah blah childcare. Now this is really annoying - as a man with kids (well child actually) its great that childcare is not an issue since I always just dump my daughter with the lads down the pub when I want to go to something. As long as women appropriate childcare as an issue 1) it will remain, unfairly, a womens issue 2) it will not be solved.

And to top it all off - at the ISF last year childcare was provided... but nobody availed of it. Despite this, a cursory glance at the minutes will see the budget is still being set aside to provide childcare.

This won't help you though - because it will be in Dublin.

And it will clash with the All Ireland football final which happens just two weeks before as many culchies come to the North Inner city when we let them visit Croke Park - cancel all events in October I say, and crush the Dublin mindset.

author by Fergalpublication date Mon Aug 30, 2004 13:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

How is it that Eilish is free to blather her sexist shite here on Indymedia. As a father, I have a pain in my arse listening to some women going on as if we have no interest or responsibility for our children, as if we never have to arrange childcare or stay at home and miss events that we would otherwise like to attend.
Give us a break, quit whinging, childcare is an issue for all of us.

author by Eilispublication date Mon Aug 30, 2004 15:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Lads, let me have your addresses and I'll give them to the father of my kids so you can lecture him instead of me. He has to be badgered to take them just once or twice a year as I DO take kids needing their father seriously. He is the one who doesn't. He has let them down totally this summer, not even taken them for a weekend - so let's get it clear about how the sexism operates for 90% of women.

As to 'what's wrong with Dublin organising a Dublin Social Forum?' - there's nothing wrong with it, but it is the IRISH Social Forum they are organising i.e. supposed to be for the whole of Ireland.

author by Fergalpublication date Mon Aug 30, 2004 17:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Our personal experiences inform and influence all our opinions and positions, what i object to is the fact that you take your own bad experience and then paint all men with the same brush because of it. I'm sure there was no great offence intended, but thats just the point, we now have a culture where casual sexism towards men is endemic - well let me tell you its just as unacceptable as sexism towards women. I have two small kids and i dont want them growing up in a world where they will be labelled as selfish, uncaring, insensitive, violent, incapable of basic domestic chores, lazy, or stupid, just because they are boys - but that is the way things seem to be going, and its not coming from neo-conservatives or right wingers, it seems to be coming from people who think of themselves as progressive and committed to equality!

author by Eilispublication date Mon Aug 30, 2004 19:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

OK. I apologise for letting my own frustration come out in my original post and blame men generally rather than one man and/or society for the fact that my kids may as well not have a father. Two of my children are boys. I am trying to bring them up differently, to see women as their equals and housework as somethign that both sexes have to do. As you can imagine, though, it is hard to make them see that childcare is something men do as well as women since they have no experience of anyone but women giving them care [i.e. me, my sisters, mother and friends]

Also, I do not think that there is no difference between sexist attitudes towards men and towards women. For example, a woman I know walked out on her husband leaving him to look after their three children. You'd have thought she killed all three of them by people's reaction. Yet men walk out all the time and it is seen as relatively normal.

Maybe when there are more men like you around, there will be fewer women like me - bitter and pretty anti-man!

author by erm - nonepublication date Tue Aug 31, 2004 19:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Surely that's the first step. Ask them!
And if it isn't then why not?
That's my tuppence!

author by Info finderpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 19:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The Irish Social Forum website is way out of date. There is no mention of this and the events section in it refers to last year.

I have also checked the Indymedia events for the dates above and again nothing.


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