Keeping The People’s Voice in Power
An event supporting the campaign for Electoral Act reform
The Coalition for Civil Society Freedom invites all to attend a public meeting on Thursday, 11 October from 2pm – 5pm at Woodquay Venue, Dublin. The purpose of this meeting is to raise issues and inspire discussion relating to the methods currently available to people in Ireland when it comes to engaging with the political system. Representatives from the EU Fundamental Rights Agency (EU FRA) and Civicus (the World Alliance for Citizen Participation) will speak from 2pm until 3pm and the public meeting will follow.
Your vote shouldn’t be the only way that you can engage with the political system.
If you’re concerned about an issue, you should be able to start a voluntary or not-for-profit group. Your group should also be able to fundraise and engage in advocacy, ie speak to your local TD, start an awareness campaign, or organise a protest. In short, you should be able to make your voice heard.
However, in Ireland right now, if your organisation engages in both fundraising and advocacy you risk falling foul of the Electoral Act and the body which oversees its enforcement – the Standards in Public Offices Commission (SIPOC).Your organisation may be forced to close down, and you yourself could be threatened with legal action.
That’s why the Coalition for Civil Society Freedom is campaigning for reform of the Electoral Act. We’re campaigning to keep #thePeoplesVoice in power.
Join us from 2pm to discuss what FRA described in January as “a blanket ban on foreign funding” in Ireland. Afterwards we will host a discussion on real-life stories of the impact the Electoral Act is having on community and voluntary organisations. We will encourage people to share their stories. We’ve already seen Education Equality have to dissolve and transfer to a limited company which can’t accept donations of over €100. Amnesty have had to battle SIPOC in court, and risked losing credibility with the public, over legitimate international funding for a human rights campaign. Organisations have been threatened with legal action and some have had to close down altogether. Both Amnesty and Education Equality will speak at the public meeting. We hope you can join us for this event.
If you can’t join us, why not add your voice to the campaign for reform here