Michael D. Higgins highlights plight of homeless and migrants in speech at 1916 Rising event

The President was speaking to over 4,000 people at the RDS

Michael D. Higgins, homeless, 1916

Image: RollingNews.ie

President Micheal D. Higgins received a standing ovation as he spoke to the relatives of those who lose their lives in the 1916 Rising.

The President's keynote address, which he gave in front of 4,000 people in attendance, covered what life was like at that point in Dublin and in Ireland, stating that the values expressed in the Proclomation 100 years ago can still inspire today. 

Turning his attention to modern Ireland, he stated that the country was still "a work in progress":

"A democracy is always and must always be a work in progress, and how we use the independence we have been gifted will continue to challenge us, morally and ethically. We must ensure that our journey into the future is a collective one; one in which the homeless, the migrant, the disadvantaged, the marginalized and each and every citizen can find homes, are fellow travellers; a journey which includes all of the multitude of voices that together speak of, and for, a new Ireland born out of contemporary imagination and challenges.

"So today, let us look to our past in a way that is emancipatory and transformative. Let us recognise all that was powerfully suggestive in that past as we set about constructing the foundations of a new and better Ireland".

The President finished by stating that it was the responsibility of those in the country today to build an Ireland "of which our founders would be proud; truly representative of a nation rooted in courage, vision and a profound spirit of generous humanity".