Anti-Bin Tax Campaign

The Anti-Bin Tax Campaign opposed the introduction of bin charges (garbage-collection fees) by local authorities in Ireland. The campaign centred largely in city areas, in particular Dublin. It was locally based with some co-ordination in the Dublin area. Non-payment was the tactic used against the charge.[1]

The campaign was supported by a variety of people from community and minor political groupings, such as Socialist Party, Socialist Workers Party, Irish Socialist Network, Workers Solidarity Movement and Working Class Action.

Imprisonment of protesters and result of campaign

In Autumn 2003, after years of mass non-payment the Dublin local authorities began non-collection; leading to protests and blockades of bin trucks. In the High Court Fingal County Council sought an injunction and the imprisonment of Joe Higgins and Clare Daly of the Socialist Party, and Irish Socialist Network members John O'Neill and Colm Breathnach. These imprisonments escalated the campaign and for a number of weeks refuse collection in the Dublin area was severely disrupted due to protests. In total 22 people were imprisoned.[2][3]

The campaign failed in its objective to reverse the introduction of bin charges. In the years to follow, many councils privatized refuse collection services. [4]

The campaign was described by The Phoenix Magazine as "an abject failure" which "left many thousands of families across Dublin in financial and legal difficulty, it proved a useful campaign and publicity tool for SP candidates in a number of constituencies" [5]

2004 local elections

At the 2004 local elections following the non-collection phase of the campaign Anti-Bin Tax a number of candidates were elected. The Socialist Party gained two seats, one on Cork City Council and one on South Dublin County Council, bringing its total up to four. Joan Collins, running as an Independent, won a seat in the Crumlin-Kimmage local electoral area on Dublin City Council.

Cieran Perry of Working Class Action running as an independent[6] narrowly missed election by 93 votes in Cabra, polling 1,753 votes. Dublin city chair of 'Stop the Bin Tax campaign' Joe Mooney ran in the Dublin North Inner City electoral ward unsuccessfully.[7]

Joe Mooney was involved in one of the most prominent incidents of the Anti-Bin Tax Campaign when he was hit by a Dublin City Council truck while the campaign tried to blockade a bin truck depot, he was carried down a road by a bin truck, before falling off. He was slightly injured.[8][9]


  1. Leahy, Pat. "Anti-bin charge campaign set to escalate after threats" Archived February 21, 2006, at the Wayback Machine., The Sunday Business Post, 24 August 2003.
  2. "Political Show Trails Slammed", Press Release by Working Class Action, 24 September 2003. Archived 25 October 2009.
  3. Reilly, Jerome. "Far left pulling the strings on bin charge campaign", Sunday Independent, 19 October 2003.
  5. "Young Bloods: Ruth Coppinger" (PDF). The Phoenix. 19 October 2010. p. 17. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
  6. "Cieran Perry Election History",
  7. "Joe Mooney Election History",
  8. "More bin tax protests planned tomorrow" Archived July 21, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.,, 14 October 2003.
  9. "Activist Injured by City Council Truck" Archived November 17, 2007, at the Wayback Machine., Dublin Campaign Against The Bin Tax Press Statement, 14 October 2003.
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