Press Release: Following Attack On Family Home Of Cllr Hugh Lewis And Aggressive Protests Against Refugee Accommodation, People Before Profit Td Calls On Community To Reject The Politics Of Fear And Intimidation

In a statement, Richard Boyd Barrett TD, for People Before Profit in Dún Laoghaire has condemned as “shocking and vile” the recent attack on Cllr Hugh Lewis’ father’s home in Ballybrack, where a stone was thrown through the window, with a threatening message warning Cllr Lewis’ to stop showing support for refugees.

Deputy Boyd Barrett said the attack on the Lewis’s home was clearly related to a number of recent protests in the Dún Laoghaire and Ballybrack area against accommodation that is or maybe used to accommodate asylum seekers and refugees.

Cllr Lewis, along with other public representatives, including People Before Profit and local community activists have been attempting to challenge some of the fearmongering and hostility being directed towards people seeking asylum, who were recently accommodated in Dún Laoghaire.

The attack on Cllr Lewis is clearly part of an attempt to silence and intimidate anyone who expresses any solidarity or compassion for those seeking asylum.

Deputy Boyd Barrett appealed to the local community in Dún Laoghaire and Ballybrack to reject the politics of fear and intimidation being stirred up by a small minority, including elements with known associations with far-right political groups.

Richard Boyd Barrett TD said:

“It is absolutely shocking and vile that the home of Cllr Hugh Lewis’s father was attacked simply because he showed solidarity and compassion for people now accommodated in Dún Laoghaire who are seeking asylum.

“This terrible attack follows directly on from recent protests by a small group of people, including elements with known associations to far-right political groups who have stirring up hatred and intimidation in our community against people seeking asylum.

“I am certain the actions of a small group do not represent the views of the vast majority of people in the Ballybrack or wider Dún Laoghaire area, but I would ask anyone who has been taken in by the prejudice, fearmongering and mis-information to think again and reject this politics of fear, hate and intimidation.

“If people are being threatened and intimidated just because they express solidarity with asylum seekers where does this end? It will be a disaster for the entire community.

“There is justified anger in many communities over the housing and cost of living crisis but this is not the fault of asylum seekers. We need unity and solidarity in communities affected by the housing and cost of living crisis to demand radical policy change from a government that has failed to resolve these problems.

“Hatred, division and intimidation will lead us to a bad place, and I hope our entire community will reject this dangerous poison and step away from these mis-directed and ugly protests.”