The 14th – 19th July 2014 marks this year’s Pride week in Dundalk which will see many events take place in and around the town. To help mark this important event in the LGBT calendar, Councillor Edel Corrigan put forward a motion at the Dundalk Municipal Council meeting this evening, to fly the Rainbow Flag above the Town Hall on those dates. The motion was passed.
Edel Corrigan said “I am so pleased this motion was passed. It may seem such a small thing but to the LGBT community it can mean so much. It shows that they are an important part of our community and they are accepted and wanted and appreciated and have an important part to play within the community.”
Councillor Corrigan continued “this year’s theme is ‘family matters’ and as always, it promises to be a colourful, happy, fun filled week of events.”
For further information on what’s on during Dundalk Pride Week please go to www.dundalkpride.com
It seems to be that every time we lift a newspaper or turn on the news there is another story of how someone has ended their life by suicide. Unfortunately these cases are the ones that have made the headlines for one reason or another and they are just the tip of the iceberg.
We hear how the suicide rate is higher now because of the recession; because of a negative view of life; because of drug abuse; because of sexual abuse; because of cyber bullying; because of the lack of mental health services; because of the pressure of Christmas and on and on it goes.
The truth is there is no one reason why someone would want to die by suicide. Suicide is not racist, ageist, anti-women, sectarian and doesn’t care how much money you have or don’t have. We are all in a ‘high risk’ category because suicide can affect any one of us. We have all been touched in some way by suicide.
It can sometimes feel like a losing battle, but it is a battle that we must keep fighting, especially on behalf of those who are too tired to fight anymore. Drogheda Sinn Féin is hosting a PIPS course on Suicidal Awareness Training.
There will be a number of issues covered:
- Reduce the stigma, and the myths, around mental health
- Increase understanding of mental health, stress and depression
- Increase awareness around the extensive support available to those at risk
- Help identify warning signs that a person may be at risk of suicide
- Develop a clearer understanding of groups who may be at higher risk of suicide
- Reduce the fear of helping someone at risk by Talking, Listening and Caring and linking those to available help
- Introduce simple ways of developing positive mental health within participants.
This has always proved a popular course (provided by PIPS) and will be held from 10am – 4pm in the Sinn Féin Office in West Street, Drogheda on Saturday 5th April.
All are welcome to attend.
If you are experiencing suicidal feelings there are a number of services that can help:
Pieta House – 01 601 0000
Samaritans – Free phone 116 123
SOSAD – 041 9848 754
In December Sinn Féin Councillor Imelda Munster called on Drogheda Borough
Council to carry out a vehicle and pedestrian user safety assessment of the
junction at Upper Mell / Cement Road / Old Slane Road.
Cllr Munster stated at that time that “there is a constant stream of traffic in all directions at this busy junction leading from Mell to the M1 Retail Park. There is also a constant flow of motorists going on to and coming off the M1 motorway heading down Mell. At this junction cars have to stop facing down Mell to turn right to access a road, where the vehicle has to do a u turn at a very busy part of the road to access several residential estates and the local GAA club on the Old Slane Road.”
Imelda Munster continued, “traffic from behind have very little visibility of the stopped vehicle due to a brow of the hill driving down Mell towards the town centre. Also pedestrians who live in the area have to cross this very busy junction to access the supermarket or shops. The road at this junction is exceptionally wide and has no safe crossing point for pedestrians.”
The Borough Council passed the motion and that report has now been carried out and returned to her and work has now commenced on the procurement of a contractor to carry out traffic counts at this location.
Cllr Munster explained “this information is needed to prepare a preliminary design for the junction and it is estimated that it will take 11 weeks to complete this phase of the project. This means it will then be ready for a Part 8 Planning presentation at the May meeting and the Borough engineer will have an interim report on the works required together with a budget cost available to consider before the Roadworks Programme is adopted.”
Cllr Munster continued “I do hope that a roundabout with pedestrian access will be part of the of the design and I intend to pursue this to have the project for this busy junction completed this year.”
Cllr Munster at the busy junction
Great news for the area
Sinn Féin Councillor Kevin Meenan has welcomed the news that Cuchulainn Cycling Club plan to build the new velodrome in the JJB building at Dundalk Retail Park. The building has been purchased by DkIT after it closed down with Dundalk losing the ice rink, gym and indoor football pitches.
“This will be a tremendous boost to the area and hopefully will come to fruition earlier than originally thought when the velodrome was earmarked for Muirhevna Mor.” Dundalk Town Council had promised a long term lease for 7.5 acres of land in Muirhevna Mor Park for the project but it is thought the JJB site would be an improved version.
Town Councillor Kevin Meenan continued “the great news about this is that it could be completed and be up and running as early as September this year. It will be olympic standard so the athletes will no longer have to leave the country to train, it will be right here in Dundalk, on our own doorstep.”
With 11 of Ireland’s largest cycling clubs located within 1.5 hours of Dundalk, it makes the town the ideal centre. In addition to the velodrome, the site will also accommodate a full sized BMX track and has the potential to incorporate a closed circuit cycling track around the perimeter.
Pat O’Shaughnessy, Cuchulainn Cycling Club Chairman and Board Member of Cycling Ireland, has expressed his delight at the news.
He said: “Our club secretary Karl Dolan originally proposed the idea to the club committee back in 2009 as a project to mark the 75th anniversary of the club. We have been working solidly in the background to realise this dream and it culminated in our announcement last year that Dundalk Town Council had granted us 7.5 acres of land with full planning permission for an outdoor velodrome and BMX track.
“However following a number of meetings with DKIT we knew that this would move the whole thing to an entirely different level and make Dundalk the cycling capital of Ireland and it’s all down to the hard work of the committee and club members.”
Councillor Kevin Meenan said “this is exciting news for Dundalk and the whole Muirhevna Mor / Retail Park area.”
Sinn Féin Cllr Imelda Munster has welcomed the decision by the Drogheda Borough Council to insert a right turning feeder light at a busy junction. Cllr Munster put forward a motion calling for this feeder light at the junction of Crosslanes/Moneymore to enable motorists coming across Crosslanes from Boyle O Reilly direction to turn in to DIFE / Moneymore / Mayfield / Lawrence Park/ Drive and Lia Breaga. There had been long tailbacks at this junction and was raising concerns on road safety.
Cllr Munster said “ I am happy to say that I got the council to agree to insert a right turning feeder light which will improve the situation as right turning vehicles will have a window to make a right turn at the junction in to the Twenties safely at each cycle of traffic light sequence. I hope that this will help with traffic build up at the junction and leave it safer for motorists and residents turning right in to your area at this junction.