Holly Cairns TD

About Me

I am Leader of the Social Democrats and a TD for Cork South-West.

At 34, Holly is the youngest party leader in the Dáil. Like so many of her generation, Holly was forced to emigrate after the financial crash. She worked in disability services abroad before moving home to take on her family farm and business.

Holy Cairns, Leader of the Social Democrats party photographed at her home place in West Cork. 
Photography by Emma Jervis

After campaigning locally to Repeal the 8th Amendment, Holly stood in the 2019 local elections. She won a seat on Cork County Council by a single vote and in 2020, she was elected as a TD.

Holly is an outspoken and passionate contributor to Dáil debates, from holding the government to account for locking an entire generation out of home ownership, to fighting for fairer compensation for survivors of mother and baby homes.

A farmer and an environmentalist, Holly is a firm believer in the need to diversify our agricultural sector in order to protect our biodiversity, improve our food security and secure a profitable future for Irish farming.

My Priorities

  • Take meaningful climate action underpinned by fair transition principles.
  • Radically increase the delivery of social and affordable housing.
  • Ensure a sustainable, profitable future for the farming sector.
  • Ratify the Optional Protocol of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
  • Ensure the full implementation of Sláintecare.

To the people out there who think, “There’s no point in voting”, “They’re all the same” and, “Nothing’s going to change”. I look forward to meeting you. I look forward to listening to you. I look forward to changing Ireland for the better, together.