Sidewalk concerns

Dear Editor:

An open letter the council of the Township of Wellington North and Mayor Andy Lennox.

I wanted to bring to your attention the unsafe condition of sidewalks in Mount Forest for a visually impaired person. The sidewalks are dangerous for us and I have been trying for four years to have the street crossing signal changed to the bird chirp noise used in most urban areas. A regular bird chirp is used for north and south and a cuckoo bird for east and west. As it is now, it is the same bird noise whichever way you are crossing.

When you are visually impaired you have to rely on the sounds of the crossing signal to inform you when it is safe to cross.  As of now, the sounds do not let you know which direction is safe to cross. These bird noises are connected to the walk and do not walk symbols that appear on the crossing signal lights for sighted people.

I offer a challenge to any member of council or Mayor Andy Lennox to stand blindfolded on the corner of Wellington and Main Streets in Mount Forest and attempt to cross safely. I cordially offer this challenge to any other sighted person who doesn’t fully understand the danger we visually impaired people face.

Continuing on safety matters, painting changes in terrain a bright yellow would alert all pedestrians of a possible hazard. Most importantly: the entire dip in sidewalks, all protruding front steps of downtown businesses and the steps at the post office would make changes more visible for any visually impaired person wanting to perform regular everyday tasks.

I hope this letter receives the attention I feel it warrants; a safer community is a blessing for all.

Tony Daciuk,
Mount Forest