Cork’s motto is “A safe harbour for ships” and all who seek refuge here should be made to feel safe and welcome, the city’s Lord Mayor has said.
The comment by the Lord Mayor of Cork, Councillor Deirdre Forde, followed a tweet she posted on Sunday evening saying “Respect and inclusivity are a hallmark of Cork life, let’s make sure it continues to be so”.
Ms Forde toldshe had posted the tweet as she had been concerned about recent incidents in which staff in branches of Cork City Library have been reported as having suffered intimidation during protests against LGBTQI+ reading material.
“I was concerned that people are going out to do a day’s work, as part of their duties, they try to do it as best they can, and even if we disagree on certain issues, I think there’s a more mature way to handle that,” she said.
Ms Forde said she did not wish to see behaviour she described as “not good for our city, our businesses and certainly not good for our workers” gathering apace.
Commenting on recent incidents in which far right protesters held noisy demonstrations outside asylum centres, Ms Forde said she would deplore any kind of intimidatory behaviour.
“Everyone is entitled to their view, but they’re not entitled to behaviour that puts other people down and causes them grief and fear."
The asylum process was the business of Government, and nobody should take the law into their own hands, she added.
Ms Forde said Cork city’s motto, “A safe harbour for ships”, was particularly apt in this situation.
“Those ships and other vessels bring these people to our harbour and we have a duty to protect them,” she said.