Make Way Day was launched in Dundalk for the fifth year running in a bid to raise awareness about the difficulties facing wheelchair users when trying to get around town.
Garda Kate Patterson, Garda Darragh Prior, Councillor Maeve Yore, and local wheelchair user John Morgan met outside the town hall on Crowe Street on Friday, September 24 to highlight the day.
John, aged 57, from Siul na Mara on the Point Road was joined by his well-trained assistance dog, Jamie. John suffered a brain injury in 2012 and has been in a wheelchair ever since.
“The footpaths aren’t laid out right. I get bad jerks in my neck because of the footpaths,” said John.
“People with disabilities have enough things to overcome. Footpaths are meant for wheelchairs and walking, not for bikes or e-scooters.”
Cllr Yore said: “Make Way Day is about educating people and raising awareness about the difficulties that people with disabilities face.
“We got great support from Chief Superintendent Mangan and the gardai. They have always supported accessibility.
“We were the first county in Ireland to launch Make Way Day and now it’s gone national. It’s educating and informing people about the challenges faced by people with disabilities.”
Cllr Yore added: “It’s tough enough being in a wheelchair without facing obstacles on the footpath too.”
Garda Darragh Prior said: “We enforce the three ‘E’s – engage, explain and enforce. I’d ask people to please be aware of people with disabilities and in wheelchairs.”