IDDA imagines a space where we do not have to choose between being Irish and fighting whiteness, between being Irish and being a Person of Color, between being Irish and being Queer, between being Irish and being feminists—a space where we can be our whole selves and link our commitment to learning about our Irish culture and history with our commitments to social justice.
IDDA is independent of any political party and open to all who generally agree with its Points of Unity & Specific Statements of Support and Solidarity. We recognize that we’re far from having the capacity to work on all of these ambitious principles simultaneously, but we none-the-less announce them clearly as a guide for our collective efforts. As the great Irish socialist James Connolly once said, “Our demands most moderate are – We only want the Earth!” While the founding members have agreed upon these organizational principles by consensus over the last year, they are not set in stone. We welcome all help in improving our organizing principles and, more importantly, building the capacity needed to help realize them.
We invite all Irish people in the Bay Area—whether by birth, descent, adoption, marriage, civil partnership, residency, or participation in Irish communities; whether socialists, anarchists, Irish republicans, anti-racists, anti-fascists, trade-unionists, environmentalists, peace activists, anti-imperialists, or feminists; and regardless of age, gender, religion, skin color, ability or sexual orientation—to join us in building this new Irish political, social, and cultural organization honestly, courageously, and respectful of differences.
The purpose of Irish Diaspora Decolonization Alliance – Bay Area is to build an Irish political, cultural, social, and educational community in the Bay Area and beyond, united by anti-racism, socialism, feminism, LGBTQ++ liberation, accessibility, climate emergency and sixth mass extinction activism, and dedicated to the decolonization of peoples and living beings in reciprocity with Indigenous Nations on whose land we live and operate as well as other Black & Indigenous / People of Color (BIPOC) communities.
We recognize the Association of Ramaytush Ohlone, Confederated Villages of Lisjan, Him’re-n Ohlone Tribe, Muwekma Ohlone Tribe, Amah Mustun Tribe, Indian Canyon Nation, Costanoan Rumsen Carmel Tribe, Rumšen Am:a Tur:ataj Ohlone, Ohlone Costanoan Esselen Nation, Southern Coast Miwok of Marin, and the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, as the sovereign guardians and protectors of this Bay Area. We also recognize that the Bay Area is home to many American Indian peoples as a result of federal relocation policies, Indigenous migrants from central and South America, and has been a center for important Indigenous political movements including the occupation of Alcatraz Island. We honor their ancestors, elders, and community leaders, past, present, and into the future. We honor the struggles of all of these nations and stand in solidarity with them, and demand that all Irish people living here make serious moves toward restoring their sovereignty as vigorously as we would fight for the sovereignty of Ireland.
Our Points of Unity
A. End racism, particularly in the U.S., Ireland, Britain, Canada, and Australia. We aim to understand, foster recognition of, and abolish Irish-white privilege, and fight Irish collaborations with white nationalism, particularly its appropriation and weaponization of Irish and ‘Celtic’ symbols and history (e.g. the ‘Irish Slaves’ Myth). We demand full access, inclusion, and power for Irish people of color in Irish political and cultural institutions.
B. End State enforced Gender and Sex essentialism. We support self-determination and reject Heteropatriarchy and binary Gender birth assignments as normative. We aim to build on and with the work of the Irish Queer and lgbtqii++ feminist communities at home and abroad in the fight for self-determination and full citizenship. We recognize the gender/sex binary as a colonial apparatus and mechanism of bodily surveillance, policing and control, and we uphold, respect, and defend everyone’s right to sex and gender self-determination.
C. End ableism. Rooted in ancient values of rights, care, solidarity, and inclusivity which remain strong in communities across Ireland and the Irish Diaspora today, and the important work of differently abled Irish activists like Disabled Women Ireland, we aim to construct fully accessible and inclusive communities. We commit ourselves to providing textual descriptions of images in our posts, closed captioning or transcription for videos, making all general meetings and events wheelchair accessible, and meeting all other requested accommodations at meetings and events (including the use of ASL and other requested translation), as possible. We further commit to stamping out everyday ableist language from our vocabularies, promoting leadership by differently abled Irish people in our Irish organization, and supporting particularly Irish dis/abled cultures like Irish Sign Language (ISL).
D. End Capitalism. Rooted in robust Irish socialist traditions, we aim to join the global anti-Capitalist movement and build socialism / mutual aid in Ireland and Diasporic communities by redistributing resources and power toward working class and poor people.
E. Build environmental sustainability and justice in Ireland and Diasporic communities. Rooted in millennia of Irish respect for our sacred sites, vibrant environmental justice movements like #ShellToSea and #SaveOurSperrins, the 26-county state’s Declaration of Climate and Biodiversity Emergency (2019) and Prohibition of Onshore Hydraulic Fracturing (2016), to defend the environment and sacred sites at home and abroad, and vigorously respond to the global existential threat posed by Climate Change and the Sixth Extinction. We recognize that the root cause of this threat is exploitation of other living beings as merely resources for human use and we are committed to decolonizing relationships with all our non-human relations. We further recognize that Indigenous peoples have always been, and continue to be, at the forefront of defending the environment and we are committed to following their leadership.
F. Free all political prisoners and end mass incarceration. We aim to build on long traditions of Irish prison resistance to support political prisoners and dismantle the prison-industrial complex across Turtle Island, Ireland, and around the world.
G. Refugees welcome in Ireland and Diasporic communities. We aim to build on our own experiences of emigration to support refugees and migrants at home and abroad. End forms of immigrant detention including Direct Provision, family separation, and immigration discrimination based on gender, religion, or health status. Abolish ICE. Provide sanctuary, fight repression, and build internationalism. We are committed to following indigenous and migrant leadership on questions of immigration rather than settler nationalists, the state, or neoliberal authorities.
H. While IDDA as an organization is committed to non-violent forms of resistance, we will not dictate methods of resistance for oppressed peoples.
Specific Statements of Solidarity & Support
We recognize and support self-determination for all colonized and racially oppressed peoples, including:
1. Éire (Ireland) and its Diaspora, and we particularly work toward:
(a) an End to Partition;
(b) an All-island Socialist Republic;
(c) Ending anti-Mincéir (Traveller) racism and facilitating traditional Mincéirí lifeways in Ireland and the Diaspora;
(d) Ending Internment by remand in the North of Ireland;
(e) Ending Direct Provision and ensure humane treatment of asylum seekers and migrants;
(f) Ending the use of Shannon Airport as a U.S. and NATO war hub and resisting all Irish state collaboration with imperialist military powers;
(g) Truth, justice and reparations for those killed and injured by the British state and loyalist paramilitaries;
(h) Truth, justice and reparations for survivors of church and state institutions (e.g. the Magdalene laundries, ‘Mother and Baby Homes’ and industrial schools);
(i) Secular governance in Ireland and Diasporic communities (No Established Churches, no Islamophobia, no anti-Semitism, or any other discrimination on the basis of spiritual belief);
(j) Full Irish citizenship for all people born on the island;
(k) Greater representation and rights for Diasporans not currently eligible for citizenship; and
(l) Increasing fluency and use of the Irish language in Ireland and the Diaspora.
2. Our ‘Celtic’ cousins in Alba (Scotland), Cymru (Wales), Mannin (Isle of Man), Kernow (Cornwall), Breizh (Brittany), Galiza (Galicia), and Asturies (Asturias).
3. Colonized people across ‘Europe’, particularly Euskal Herria (Basque country), Catalunya (Catalonia), Corsica, Sápmi (Samiland), and Romani peoples. British out of Gibraltar. Turkey out of Cyprus. We welcome all Irish Diasporans from across ‘Europe’.
4. Africa and its Diaspora, and we particularly work toward:
(a) making #BlackLivesMatter and actively putting an end to anti-Blackness in communities where we live;
(b) Peace, justice, liberation, and reparations for the Congo, Haiti, Egypt, Grenada, Libya, Guyana, Sudan, Jamaica, Somalia, Azania (South Africa), and Western Sahara;
(c) Ending U.S. and NATO military intervention in Africa (No to United States Africa Command – AFRICOM);
(d) Truth, justice & reparations for those killed, injured, dehumanized, and exploited by generations of racialized chattel enslavement, Jim Crow, and institutional racism; and
(e) Debunking the ‘Irish Slaves’ Myth and knowing our ‘Black & Green’ transatlantic history
We welcome and honor Black/Afro-Irish relatives.
5. Indigenous nations and people who can trace their indigenous ancestry to the Bay Area, particularly the Association of Ramaytush Ohlone, Confederated Villages of Lisjan, Him’re-n Ohlone Tribe, Muwekma Ohlone Tribe, Amah Mustun Tribe, Indian Canyon Nation, Costanoan Rumsen Carmel Tribe, Rumšen Am:a Tur:ataj Ohlone, Ohlone Costanoan Esselen Nation, Southern Coast Miwok of Marin, and the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, and Indigenous nations and national liberation movements throughout the ‘Western Hemisphere’ from the Mapuche nation of Tierra Del Fuego to the Inuit nations of the Arctic Circle.
(a) We call on the Vatican to repeal the Doctrine of Discovery;
(b) Settler colonial states must honor their treaties;
(c) End exploitation of the Alberta Tar Sands and its continental network of pipelines;
(d) End the racist use of Native people as mascots and misappropriations of indigenous cultures;
(e) We support the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) & the National Indigenous Congress (CNI);
(f) We work toward peace, justice, liberation, and reparations for Puerto Rico, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras, Panama, Colombia, Cuba (Close Guantanamo), Venezuela, The Plurinational State of Bolivia, Brazil, Peru, Chile y Argentina.
(g) British out of Falkland Islands, Anguilla, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, and Virgin Islands.
(h) We recognize that Irish people have the choice of identifying as indigenous to Ireland and call on Ireland and its Diaspora to join in solidarity with the global indigenous movement.
We welcome and honor Irish-Indigenous, Irish-Chicanx & Irish-Latinx relatives.
6. Indigenous peoples and national liberation struggles in Oceania, particularly
(a) Hawai’i, Samoa, Aotearoa, and all Polynesian peoples,
(b) Aboriginal nations and Torres Strait Islanders,
(c) West Papua, Aceh, Dayak (Borneo), and all indigenous Melanesian peoples,
(d) U.S. out of Micronesia & the Philippines;
(e) Igorot, Ati, Lumad, Bangsamoro, and all indigenous peoples of the Philippines.
We welcome and honor Irish-Pasifika, Irish-Filipinx, Irish-Maori, Irish-Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander relatives.
7. Indigenous peoples and national liberation struggles in Southwest Asia and North Africa (SWANA), and we particularly work toward:
(a) Palestinian liberation by actively putting an end to Zionism, Israeli Apartheid, and occupation of Arab lands, upholding the right of return for Palestinian refugees, building the Boycott Divestment & Sanctions (BDS) movement, resisting international diplomatic normalization with the state of Israel, supporting prisoners and Palestinian popular resistance;
(b) Peace, justice, liberation, and reparations for Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Iraq, Iran, Kurdish, and Amazigh people; and
(c) Recognition and reparations for the Armenian genocide, and self-determination for Armenian people in Turkey and Greater Armenia.
We welcome and honor Irish-Arab, Irish-Iranian, Irish-Kurdish, Irish-Amazigh and Irish-Armenian relatives.
8. Indigenous peoples and national liberation struggles in South, Central, and East Asia. Building on the Irish Republican-Gadar Party alliance of the early 20th century against British empire, we seek to renew solidarity and friendship between our communities in the Bay Area, and particularly work toward:
(a) Freedom for Kashmiri, Dalit, Indian Muslim, Tamil, Sikh and Rohingya peoples;
(b) Justice and reparations for Vietnamese, Cambodian, Laotian, and Afghan peoples;
(c) Justice and reparations for Korean people, and the peaceful reunification of North and South;
(d) Justice and reparations for people of Japanese descent interned in the U.S. during WWII and those murdered in Japan by U.S. nuclear weapons at Hiroshima & Nagasaki; and
(e) No U.S. bases in Asia.
We welcome and honor Irish-Asian relatives.
9. China and its Diaspora. Building on recent events co-organized by Irish and Chinese communities on Ohlone land, we aim to:
(a) Foster recognition of Irish crimes against people of Chinese descent in the Bay Area and across Turtle Island;
(b) Stand with Chinese people for truth, justice, and reparations for British colonization and U.S. white supremacy; and
(c) Contribute to building positive and principled relationships between our peoples.
We particularly welcome and honor Irish-Chinese relatives.
contact (at) decolonize.irish
join (at) decolonize.irish
We invite you to join us at our next General Meeting. If you are interested in attending or joining IDDA please contact join (at) decolonize.irish.
If you are not in the Bay Area but would like to build with us, please let us know. We currently have several members living outside of the Bay Area, and we’d be very open to more, as well as discussions about holding conferences or building new chapters. We look forward to stronger global Diaspora relations, alliances, and coalitions in the future.
Even if you don’t /can’t agree with all aspects of our ambitious inter/national program, we remain interested in standing and organizing with you in support of any of these struggles, and participating in spaces where our role as Irish people in global decolonization can be debated, discussed, and increasingly developed. For general inquiries, please Direct Message our social media accounts or send an email to contact (at) decolonize.irish.
If you’d like to receive our future announcements, please subscribe to our social media accounts: Facebook (@decolonize.irish), Twitter (@idda_ba), Instagram (@idda_ba), or subscribe to our public announcements email list by sending an email to idda-ba-subscribe (at) lists.decolonize.irish.