People’s Candidate in Limerick City West
Cathal is an unemployed father of 3 living in the designated regeneration area of Ballinacurra Weston, Limerick.
In a letter of appeal to the voter he explains that “The crumbling economy forced me to close my business as a self-employed contractor in 2010. As a homeowner struggling to pay a mortgage and raise a family I fully appreciate and share the anger felt by many”
He has been an Independent Community Activist for the past 13-years and is involved in numerous community based groups. he an advocate for a Human-Rights based approach to community participation in the decisions that affect our lives and over the years he has refused invitations from a variety of political parties to join their ranks. Cathal’s letter/election leaflet takes the form of a job application:
JOB APPLICATION: YOUR COUNCILLOR FOR LIMERICK CITY WEST
My commitment is to represent the communities policy preference, however, I wish to be honest and declare my personal position: I am anti austerity; appalled by the mismanagement of our economy and the hardships it has inflicted on many families. I am actively opposed to water charges and the property tax. Why should we have to suffer for the mistakes of others? I am Pro-Life, in favour of a united Ireland and support LGBT equality, agus tugaim tacaíocht do forbairt na Gaeilge (and I support the development of the Irish language), but please understand… that if elected to the Council there is absolutely nothing I (or any other Councillor) can do to change the current reality regarding these national issues.
The crumbling economy forced me to close my business as a self-employed contractor in 2010. As a homeowner struggling to pay a mortgage and raise a family I fully appreciate and share the anger felt by many.
While I am concerned for the future of our Nation, it is the decisions that can be made closer to home, the decisions a Councillor can influence or make, which should be of concern to us both. The job I’m applying to you for will allow me to participate in decisions that could affect your life; it is a paid position that will require me to vote on serious matters such as Part 8 planning, which gives final approval for development projects.
I have been an Independent Community Activist for the past 13-years and I am involved in numerous community based groups. I am an advocate for a Human-Rights based approach to community participation in the decisions that affect our lives and over the years I have refused invitations from a variety of Political Parties to join their ranks.
I believe that the people should decide policy, not Political Parties and other vested interests. Parties operate a top-down system with the leadership instructing their members how to vote; this “whip” system disempowers local communities and has corrupted the democratic process.
If you want to see real change then you need to do more than simply change who you vote for, you need to change the type of representation you are voting for. I have signed THE PEOPLE’S CONTRACT, which arises from the duty to “represent constituencies” as described in our Constitution, it makes no provision for Political Parties or for individuals to represent themselves. I will be accountable to you and your community.
I will facilitate your participation in the decision making and I will be accountable to you and your community. I ask that you read my CV (below) when considering me for the position; I think you will find that I am more than qualified to do the job.
As your Councillor I would represent you without fear or favour; I will never refuse to assist you because you have sought representation from others, in fact I will encourage and assist you to lobby all of your public representatives for support.
If necessary, I can advise and assist you in making a complaint to the Ombudsman or in petitioning the EU on matters of Community Law. I can also advise and assist your community in campaigns; as a Community Activist I do this already and will continue to do so whether or not I am elected as your Councillor – feel free to contact me if you or your community need some practical assistance and advice.
CURRICULUM VITAE: YOUR COUNCILLOR FOR LIMERICK CITY WEST
Name: Cathal McCarthy. Address: 5 – 6 Weston Gardens, Rosbrien, Limerick. DOB: 21 May 1970
The Learning Curve Institute: FETAC Level 5 Certificate with Distinction in Community Addiction Studies (2010).
Community Action Network: FETAC Level 5 Certificate with Distinction in Human Rights (2013).
University of Limerick: Graduate Diploma (Hons) in Sociology (Youth, Community & Social Regeneration) (2014).
I was a member of the National Executive of the Irish National Congress (INC) from 1993 – 2010 and was elected to a number of positions in that time; PRO (1998 – 2010), Vice-Chair (1999 – 2001), Chairperson (2001 – 2003).
Highlights: I was a member of the organising committee for “25 Years: Time for Peace – Time to Go” campaign and national rally (1994). I was a member of the negotiation team to agree new wording on Articles 2 & 3 of the Irish Constitution to facilitate the Good Friday Agreement (1998). I was the organiser of the protest against the civic endorsement of sectarianism by Dublin City Council, which received international media coverage (2000).
Lowlights: I left the INC in 2010 as I felt the organisations independence had been compromised by party politics.
Local Politics & Community Activism
Since 2001 I have worked on a voluntary basis as an independent Community Activist; I am Chairperson of the Weston Gardens Residents’ Association and Limerick Regeneration Watch, I am PRO with the Ballinacurra Weston Residents Alliance (BWRA) and advisor to the Moyross Residents’ Alliance (MRA). I was PRO with the short-lived Concerned Residents Alliance (2008 – 2009), a city-wide alliance of residents’ associations.
I am Treasurer of Our Lady of Lourdes Community Umbrella Group and their representative on the Limerick City Community & Voluntary Forum (CVF). I represent the CVF on Limerick City Council’s Environmental Strategic Policy Committee (nominated by the BWRA and MRA). I was recently nominated by the CVF to new the Local Community Development Committee, but was not selected for membership by the City & County Manager.
Highlights: Representing “regeneration” communities at the EU (2009). BWRA taking first prize in the Limerick Community Challenge (2011). BWRA & MRA entering Tidy Towns (2012 – present). Support from UN for WGRA & BWRA proposals on community participation (2014). Signing THE PEOPLE’S CONTRACT (2014).
Lowlights: The failure of our Councilors to represent and give voice to community concerns on “regeneration”.
Arrange an Interview
I will not be calling to your door unannounced, if you (or your community group) would like to interview me for the position of your Councillor then please contact me and we can agree a mutually convenient time. I am asking for your No. 1 vote; please vote No. 2 for Jason Griffin from Patrickswell who has also signed THE PEOPLE’S CONTRACT.
T: 44 07 54 M: 087 784 50 70 W: www.limerickregeneration.org