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What we’ve been up to – October 2023

By 26th October 2023 January 11th, 2024 No Comments

As we head into Autumn, despite the challenges we’ve all faced over the past few months, when I think of all we’ve achieved together, it gives me renewed hope.

I’m constantly amazed by how much this community can do with so few resources, and it’s people like you who make it all possible! So, friend, grab a cuppa and find out what we’ve been up to together ☕

☠️We’re putting a stop to Citi Bank’s greenwashing 

Most of us agree that polluters should be made to clean up their mess. That’s why we’ve been turning the spotlight on Citibank, the second-biggest backer of toxic fossil fuel corporations in the world. They really care about their image so Uplifters paid for a giant billboard outside Citi headquarters in Dublin. [1]

Citi sponsors the childrens’ science and discovery centre, W5, in Belfast – creating the illusion that they care about our kids’ futures and learning. Together with Act Now, we’ve been piling pressure on W5 bosses to drop Citi and stop them greenwashing their image. 

Earlier this month together with Act Now, we dropped a giant banner off the Queen’s Bridge in Belfast, in front of everyone attending the NI Investors Conference, sponsored by Citi – getting lots of media attention too.[2]

🙌 A massive win against the toxic Energy Charter Treaty 

After months of people-powered action, Eamon Ryan eventually confirmed that Ireland will be pulling out of this dangerous trade deal that allows fossil fuel corporations to sue us. [3] 

We called and emailed our TDs and government ministers in our hundreds, chipped in to pay to expose how toxic this dangerous treaty is, built a huge petition and made sure journalists couldn’t ignore it. Now we have to keep the pressure on to guarantee that Eamon Ryan follows through on his promise, so stay tuned. 

🐏 Saving the iconic Conor Pass

1,400 acres of the most amazing nature, biodiversity and beauty is being sold off at the Conor Pass in Kerry. Together we’ve kickstarted a massive campaign to create a National Park, so it can’t be touched or sold off again.

Hundreds of Uplifters pitched in to pay for headline-grabbing news and our video has been shared far and wide on social media. [4] Together we can show Malcolm Noonan that we’re not going quiet – until this iconic area of outstanding beauty is safe. Take a look at the video for yourself:

🌿Getting toxic weed killer out of our food and water

We all want to live healthy lives and know that the food and water we eat and drink are free from harmful chemicals. A lab, paid for by Uplift members, tested 26 volunteers, including farmers, politicians, journalists, mothers and even a child, for glyphosate in their bodies. All but one of them tested positive – making news made headlines just in time to send a massive people-powered message to  Agriculture Minister, Charlie McConalogue, ahead of a crucial glyphosate vote. [5] 

If you haven’t already, send an email today – there’s still time to tell him to vote against the vote to re-licence glyphosate – add your name here

Now we’re ramping up the pressure to get the country talking about toxic glyphosate. We’re bringing to Ireland – for a special screening – the film ‘Into the Weeds’, which tells the story of Dewayne Johnson, a school groundskeeper who sued Monsanto (now Bayer) for poisoning him with glyphosate. 

The screening is on October 17th in Dublin city centre – we are very fortunate to be joined on the evening by the film’s director, Jennifer Baichwal. Seats are going to be limited so watch the trailer below and book your ticket here: [6]

🏳️‍🌈Greater than fear: Communities are doing amazing things

Most of us believe that no matter who you love, your gender or where you come from – that we all should have the freedom to be ourselves, to be healthy, and to feel safe. But there are some who want to stoke up fear and hate, trying to turn us against each other. [7]

Our people-powered community has been proudly showing that love is greater than fear. Together we’ve been speaking up in our communities in solidarity with people seeking asylum and refuge, with library staff and LGBT+ people experiencing harassment. Check out the wonderful stories of what communities are doing – here

🌳Last minute battle to save the Nature Restoration Law

A few weeks ago it looked like a majority of MEPs were set to vote against a new EU law designed to reverse the collapse of nature. [8] But then thousands of us piled pressure on Irish MEPs, helping to tip the balance in favour of the Nature Restoration Law. 

Now we’re planning on what we can do to make sure the law passes the finish line – setting our communities on a path toward beautiful countryside full of birdsong, seas full of fish, clean drinking water for everybody, and reduced damage from droughts, wildfires, and flooding.

🤗Mental health care we all need and deserve

Thousands of us, including children, are waiting years to get the care we deserve – because years of neglect have brought our creaking mental health services to breaking point. 

That’s why, our community has teamed up with Mental Health Reform and we’ve sent thousands of emails to the Minister of Health to demand the funding needed to make sure the services, staff and special programmes are in place for all who need care be made available in Budget 2024. [9] 

🏆Members have been winning on their own campaigns

SouthDoc will stay in Kanturk:

The local community in Kanturk successfully campaigned to keep the out-of-hours GP service in place. 3,000 people signed the petition and received huge support and coverage in the media. [10] 

Defending Democracy at Maynooth University: 

Staff at Maynooth University launched a campaign after the announcement they would no longer be able to elect their own representatives to the university’s governing body – a decision reversed following a huge backlash and community campaign. [11]

Disposable vapes are kicked out:

Disposable vapes are harming our health and littering our communities. Now Health Minister Stephen Donnelly has promised to get rid of them – thanks to a massive outcry by thousands of people and the environmental group, Voice. [12]

Is there something in your community that needs to be changed or fixed in Ireland? If you have a burning issue you feel strongly about, you too could start your campaign on MyUplift.

💕Uplift is funded by you!

Uplift doesn’t take money from the government or big business. All of our community’s campaigns are funded by members like you by chipping in fivers and tenners.

Your support is the difference between success and failure. Will you chip in what you can now? 🙏


[1] Citibank: Stopping fossil fuel finance – Uplift – People Powered Change | Uplift,ie & ‘No Pride on a Dead Planet’ protest takes place at Citi HQ in Dublin | Louth Live

[2] UpliftIRL – Citibank | Twitter

[3] UpliftIRL – ECT | Twitter

[4] Rally held as group urges State to buy Conor Pass | RTÉ

[5] Weedkiller glyphosate shows up in all but one of the samples tested on Irish volunteers |

[6]Into the Weeds: Dewayne ‘Lee’ Johnson vs. Monsanto Company | The Passionate Eye |

[7] Cork City Library staff subject to intimidation and protests related to LGBTQ+ reading material |

[8] Nature Restoration Law: A Chance for the EU to Make Good on the Green Deal | Agricultural and Rural Convention |

[9] €115 million needed for mental health services in Budget, says organisation | Dublin People

[10] Health Minister Stephen Donnelly assures future of Kanturk South Doc service |

[11] Defend Democracy at Maynooth University | Uplift

[12] Disposable vapes set to be banned in crackdown that will also target flavours and advertising | & Ban Disposable Vapes Ireland | Uplift

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