Cairnwood Green Luas concern

September 2, 2013

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Councillor Máire Devine met with South Dublin County Council and the Rail Procurement Agency  on August 28th regarding the opening up of the green space at  Cairnwood for Luas access.

The following points were agreed;

  • That no works will take place at Cairnwood Court pro tem.
  • That SDCC/RPA will investigate if it is possible to provide a link between Ambervale/Cairnwood without disrupting Cairnwood Green-this potential proposal to be detailed in a report and relayed to all the residents.
  • That any suggestions/proposals will be taken to the Tallaght Area Committee in October for full discussion.
  • That communication between RPA and residents will be a priority.

You can access the leaflet that councillor Devine dropped into the houses of Cairnwood last Saturday here: Cairnwood Luas Update, 28th August

You can look at a PDF of the proposed RPA change in access to the Cookstown Luas stop here: Cookstown_AccessMap_2012

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1913-2013 the message still matters

August 30, 2013

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This weekend hopefully on the streets of Dublin there will be a display of remembering how we are still fighting for basic workers rights a century on from the lockout. The words of Larkin below ring true today.

We are not sure if Councillor’s Devine’s clenched fist is to do with the suffrage sign above her head or that she has tickets for the Dublin Kerry match this weekend! Sometimes the revolution can wait until the final whistle.

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Springfield cleanup

August 29, 2013

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Late summer might not be the right time for the public areas of Springfield to get a ‘Spring’ clean, but some great work was done last week with over 60 people turning up on the day. The photo here captures some of the group, with Councillor Devine on the far left. Is it suspicious that she is carrying a paper and balloons rather than a brush!

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Tallaght’s true blues

August 19, 2013

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The Liam McCarthy Cup may not be resting in Dublin this year, but it is only a matter of time and Sam is coming home! This house sets a high benchmark for any other Dublin fans. Get your paint orders in.


Time to recognise Ireland’s women

August 13, 2013

It’s time to recognise Ireland’s women – starting with the naming of Dublin’s new bridge

The time is long past for fairness in how we name and honour the women of Ireland in its capital city. We must publicly recognise the extraordinary women who have contributed to Irish society, writes Máire Devine.

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by Máire Devine

CÁ BHFUIL Mná na hEireann? What tributes does Dublin City have to women?  The time is long past for a sexual democracy in how we name and honour the women of Ireland in its capital city.

While there is a handful of extraordinary women whose contribution to Irish society have recognition, albeit not with equal billing to men, the ordinary extraordinary woman has no place in the annals of our history. Where were/are our women? Recent events would suggest that a sizeable portion of the male establishment prefers to keep them barefoot and pregnant. Still.

What tributes does our capital have to women?

We are still the spare rib. What tributes does this city have to women? Real women and those legendary or imagined. How, if at all, does Dublin recognise the 52 per cent  of its inhabitants? (Census 2011). What portion of our social spaces reflect this statistic?

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I am aware of the well endowed “Molly” ( Southside as home!) , “The Meeting” (Woollen Mills) and the curious tapestry rug, a tad creepy (displayed in a carpet shop window  Dame Street) of Mary Robinson – but little else of any tribute to women appears known or visible. Even though we constitute more than half of Dublin’s population, women have inspired relatively few place names, and even fewer once you eliminate the blessed saints.

Public called on for naming suggestions

Dublin City Council had asked the public for suggestions regarding the naming of the new bridge due to open in the autumn. No bridge spanning the Liffey is named in honour of an actual woman or in reference to us women. Poor Anna Livia – sweeping from mountains to sea – dominated and bounded by visible substantive structures accorded to men. Trampling over her – the floozie!

It goes without saying that women have been neglected yet are equally deserving as the men whose names grace our capitals’s public spaces. Have we just become accustomed to not being important enough, immune to the masculinity that pervades our city? Time is long past for a sexual democracy!

Tasked by SF earlier this year to organise the event of 2013 for International Women’s Day, we explored women’s roles in this the centenary year of the Dublin lockout: 1913 was the turning point for Irish workers which flung open the gates for trade unions to flourish. It was a critical watershed in a struggle, still not over, to bring economic justice to governing of Ireland, to pay a fair wage to all workers, to spread wealth to those in need, to ensure that it was the Irish people who had ‘ownership of Ireland and the unfettered control of Irish destinies’.

I spent two days rediscovering my city and photographed 23 statues/sculpts depicting Mná Na hEireann, confining my curiosity to those artefacts we pass by in our everyday lives. The postcard represents just five of these – a banner designed for the event last March displays more of the photos. womenspostcard_2-1

We subconsciously accept that public life is male-dominated

We all are accustomed to public life as essentially male-dominated. Subconsciously we have accepted this without much thought or question. Despite being stakeholders, who individually and as a group have contributed enormously to our historical and evolving community that is our city, the feminine, has been carelessly and detrimentally ignored.

Recently, as part of a longstanding debate over official efforts to undo entrenched gender roles that pervade all countries, several major cities have considered the idea of striving for gender parity on signposts. This might seem a simple and frivolous measure but in some cities politicians have passed legislation that requires streets and public places be named for women until parity is reached with men.

I imagine that our absence at street level, so to speak, has and continues to impede sexual democracy at all levels. Perhaps Dubliners should seek  a quota when naming  public areas – whether it be streets, squares,(or as we now hipstery call them ‘plazas’), buildings, bridges, forests, parks – in fact anything within the public realm. The quota would need to be weighted higher than electoral ones to balance this imbalance.

I can think of places which ought to be stripped of their name- defrocked so to speak. Sín sceal eile.

(Of note; the one global “honour” bestowed upon women was the naming of hurricanes after us. A dubious tribute that suggests unpredictability, wrath, destructiveness but definitely awe inspiring and fascinating. From 1978 male and female names were alternated.

The six photos in “The Good The Bad and The Ugly are; L-R

ASPIRATION: Treasury Building, Grand Canal Street (formerly Boland’s Mill site of 1916). Sculptor Rowan Gillespie (1995). A naked woman scuttling up the exterior of the building looking back for others to follow. It depicts the uphill struggle for Irish freedom. The sculptor had to change its sex when the wealthy business man who commissioned it felt uneasy at the thought of a naked man crawling outside his office! So she’s there by default.

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MURDERED MAYORESS: St Marys Pro-Cathedral, Marlborough St. Dublin. Conall McCabe (2001). Mayoress Margaret Ball refused to renounce her faith or take the Oath of Supremacy to the English Monarchs. Her son Walter, a turncoat, had her arrested and imprisoned in Dublin Castle. She died there of neglect and ill treatment in 1584.

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MAEDHBH WARRIOR QUEEN: Connaught House, Burlington Road. Patrick O’ Reilly (2004). Tall she stands in naked glory holding a bulls head and spear in her hands. The legendary Queen of Connaught who took no prisoners. Some accuse her of being a misandrist while others, in that Dublin parlance, reckon “she’s a bit of a goer”. A maelstrom of magnificence.

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COUNTESS MARKIEVICZ AND POPPET: Tara Street. Sculptor Elizabeth McLoughlin (1998). According to her contemporaries Poppet was” a dog you’d love to root” as written by Seán O Faoláin in his biography of the Countess. The statue was bluntly criticised in an Irish Times review at its unveiling as “vulgar, coarse” and a “gift shop item enlarged”.

ANNA LIVIA: Croppies Memorial Park, Wolfe Tone Quay (formally of O’ Connell St). Designed by Eamonn O Doherty to commemorate Dublin’s Millennium in 1988. At 5.5 metres long young Anna symbolises the river Liffey in female form. AKA “Floozie in de Jacuzzi/Hoo-er in de sewer”.

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FIONNUALA-CHILDREN OF LIR: Garden of Remembrance, Parnell Square. By Oisín Kelly 1971. A Legend connected with Thuatha Dé Dannan. King Lir’s daughter, Fionnuala, along with her three brothers were transformed into swans by the jealous Queen Aoife and spent 900 years on the lakes of Ireland. It symbolises the birth of anation following 900 years of oppression. “O generations of freedom remember us”.

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This article first appeared in the Journal.ie on Monday 5th August, and has recorded over 15,000 views! Impressive.


Sunny days & safe shopping in Kilnamanagh

July 29, 2013

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Vigilant shopping was the theme of the leaflets given out by Tallaght Sinn Fein last Saturday 27th July,  while the day was still sunny, and the thunder storms had yet to come. There was a good reception from shoppers and thanks to team, pictured above for coming out on the day.

The leaflet tells how, “There has been a spate of aggravated purse snatchings in car parks within shopping complexes, shoppers at Kilnamanagh S.C. have been victims of this terrifying crime. Cllr Máire Devine has been in discussions with the Management and in particular the anchor tenant- Dunnes Stores. It has been decided that a HI-VIS Security Guard will patrol the car park to improve shoppers safety. This is welcomed and much appreciated -it will reassure shoppers while also deterring thieves.”

“The Gardaí are following positive lines of enquiries and believe this is an organised gang who are attacking vulnerable shoppers- in the main women and frazzled mothers distracted by energetic tots.”

You can check out the leaflet here: Kilnamanagh safety leaflet, 29-7-13


MindMindR launch

June 26, 2013

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Councillor Máire Devine – Everyone phone should have one!

MindMindR is a comprehensive directory of Mental Health services and resources for South Dublin County. The MindMindR app enables users to quickly gain access to information on a range of mental health services available in their local area, concentrating mainly on Tallaght, Clondalkin, Lucan and Rathfarnham. MindMindR is an­ initiative of ­South Dublin Co­unty Council in­ partnership wi­th Comhairle Na­ nÓg, South Dub­lin County’s Yo­uth Council.

In his leargas blog Gerry Adams wrote today how in 2012 Sinn Fein Counicllor Cathal King and current Mayor of South Dublin Council  “proposed that the Council develop an app for the Iphone and android phones providing a directory of mental health services for the area. The idea was to provide easy access to services by location, type, age group, useful links and emergency services.  After a lot of hard work by the council’s IT department and with the support of a variety of other organisations, including Comhairle na nÓg, South Dublin County’s Youth Council, this morning the app – Mind MindR – was launched” .

Councillor Máire Devine attended the launch and described the app as ” an innovative response to the fragile mental health of our people. This App brings access into the palms of their hands- literally. Every phone should have one. Minding our Minds

Lunching the app today, Mayor King said “The origins of the idea are from my own personal experience like others who knew or know people with mental health difficulties and memories of those who died from Suicide. There is unfortunately still a stigma out there around the whole issue of Mental Health and I felt that if we as a Council developed an app with a QR code linking people to local services it would remove that initial stigma of physically asking for help. I believe what has been developed here can achieve that goal”.

The picture above shows Máire Devine with Sean Crowe, Sinn Fein TD Dublin South West, Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams and Cathal King, South Dublin Mayor and Sinn Fein Councillor at the MindMindR launch. The app

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