This statue which is somewhat unattractive was criticised at the time of its erection for the outsized hands encouraging the workers to rise up.
Jim Larkin (1874-1947) is remembered in the centre of Dublin city for his dedication to worker’s rights. In 1909 Jim Larkin founded the Irish Transport & General Worker’s Union [ I was actually a member for about eight years in the 1970s] catering for unskilled workers such as carters, dockers, labourers, and factory hands, who lived in conditions of great misery in the slums of Dublin, then reputed to be among the worst in Europe. By 1913 his union had over 10,000 members and had its headquarters in Liberty Hall.
His success caused apprehension among the employers, who, led by William Martin Murphy, banded into a federation and insisted that all employees leave “Larkin’s union”. When they refused, the great lock-out of 1913 followed. Other unions supported their fellow-workers, and about 100,000 were thrown out of employment. Despite being reduced to starvation they kept up the struggle for eight months.
In 1912, along with James Connolly, Larkin established the Irish Labour Party of which he was the first leader.