“Revolutionary Housing League” stages protest against eviction

It is expected that an eviction attempt will be made tomorrow against the group

The Revolutionary Housing League (RHL) staged a protest against an attempted High Court injunction to evict them from a building in Parkgate, Dublin 8. 

On Thursday  September 15, at approximately 3pm, the group entered the premises on Dawson Street, shouting slogans of “Housing for All” and holding up banners. 

The protest follows a High Court order for all people occupying the building in Parkgate to vacate the premises immediately.

The RHL first occupied the Dublin 8 property on August 24, and have renamed the building “Ionad Seán Heuston” and is using it as a homeless shelter. The property was previously operated by fabric wholesalers Hickey and was vacated two years ago.

Since September 7, the League has been using the property as emergency accommodation for any homeless people affected by recent adverse weather conditions. Residents of Ionad Seán Heuston include homeless Irish people, migrants and refugees and the group claims to be anti-racist and non-discriminatory.

The RHL also reported they provided accomodation to a dozen refugees who were denied accommodation elsewhere. Last week, the government confirmed that 201 refugees were denied accommodation due to a lack of space.

Financial fund Davy Platform ICAV, acting on behalf of its sub-fund the Phoenix Sub-fund, filed a claim against RHL to the High Court, claiming that the League is occupying the property illegally. Phoenix Sub-fund is due to turn the Parkgate property into 519 residential units. According to their claim, social media posts from the RHL have contained a series of overt and explicit threats towards the official property owners.

According to the financial fund, Phoenix Sub-fund are concerned that the RHL’s occupation will prevent them from carrying out any further works at the site.

Speaking in court on September 15, a representative for the RHL explained, “We believe in constitutional action in normal times; we believe in revolutionary action in exceptional times.”

The High Court ordered all people occupying the Parkgate property to immediately vacate the premises.

It is expected that an eviction order will be carried out tomorrow, Wednesday September 21, however many of the residents of Ionad Seán Heuston stated their unwillingness to leave the property.

Members of the group at the protest, some of whom are currently homeless, spoke about the difficulty in finding housing and spoke against the attempted eviction. One of the members spoke of his difficulty finding housing for himself and his girlfriend, who is five months pregnant.

Speaking to Trinity News, one of the organisers of the group said; “Today, we held two protests … following their decision to take a high court injunction against the homeless residents at Ionad Seán Heuston.”

“We compare both [the financial funds] to the land agents from the Land War, acting on behalf of the private interests of the moneyed classes.” 

They stated that they will be “taking this protest to all such offices and all such collaborators in the eviction industry”.

The group is known for its previous occupation of Lefroy House, or “Connolly House” as they renamed it, on Eden Quay earlier this year for approximately a month before they were evicted by gardaí on behalf of the Salvation Army. The League also previously occupied Iveagh Markets in late July and attempted to rename it “Ionad Cathal Brugha”.

This article was updated on September 27 to update phrasing related to financial funds.