In a very angry statement, dominated by indignation, the Pancyprian Organization of the Blind denounces the complete exclusion of visually impaired people and citizens in general from the center of Nicosia, speaks of a complete lack of respect for their human dignity, while accusing them of of the Municipality of Nicosia and the Mayor of the city himself that “they send messages of racism and half-blindness”.
The whole announcement:
The Municipality of Nicosia is expanding the policies of exclusion of the blind and the citizens in general from the center of the capital, “whistling indifferently” and despising the reactions of its own citizens, depriving the citizens of the fundamental human rights of mobility, participation in important manifestations of life and their inclusion in the community.
Following the predominance of the interests of the builders of the project in Eleftherias Square who wanted to be paid immediately and the failure of the Mayor's own promise that he would allegedly correct the distortions regarding the project in question, which were found during a visit to the site of the Municipality together with representatives of the Pancyprian Organization of the Blind (deficiencies in the issues of application of the specifications of the national and international standards for the dimensions and distances of the equipment in public spaces, specifications of brightness, color contrast and signaling, guides for the blind, in the center of Nicosia and Eleftherias Square with obstacles and barriers to the movement of citizens and incompatibility of the project with the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities), dangerous granite cubes were placed with pointed corners on the sidewalks and sidewalks of άπλάθο European funding, which completes the exclusion of the blind and endangers even the lives of citizens themselves. This is a direct reversal of the original plan and a blatant violation by them of the well-publicized sustainable mobility policies, which have been implemented for decades in the capitals of other European countries.
The Pancyprian Organization of the Blind considers provocative, offensive and dangerous this arbitrary action of the Municipality of Nicosia as, after the completion of the relevant European project, placed on various sidewalks and in particular on the guide for the blind intended for use by our blind fellow human beings. , sharp granite barriers, endangering the lives not only of citizens with disabilities, but also of unsuspecting citizens who, as recorded in comments on social media, have already injured themselves and their children! The invocation of these obstacles for the purpose of allegedly preventing vehicle parking on the sidewalk, is a tangible proof of the inability of the Municipality of Nicosia to serve its citizens in an orthodox way and brings exactly the opposite results, since its policies prevent free pedestrians in the area and their safety and life in general is endangered.
By this action, the Municipality violates the obligation of every public authority in our country to implement the national and international legislation, including the minimum standards for the installation of blind guides with specific specifications on the sidewalks: It is considered that they are trying to deceive the European Commission afterwards. , ie after their financing of the project, that it meets the accessibility requirements, as provided for in the relevant regulations for the financing of projects by European funds.
Despite the relevant reactions, the competent services of the municipality and the Mayor of Nicosia are not willing to put aside these dangerous obstacles from the center of Nicosia, on the contrary, they intend to “nail the rights of the blind” on the spot with the permanent placement of these granite »On the sidewalk, describing them as” urban equipment or furniture “.
The officials of the Municipality of Nicosia and the Mayor of this city in an expression of complete lack of respect for the human dignity of the blind, send messages of racism and half-blindness, trying to prove that the Cypriot citizens with visual disabilities are second class citizens as well as of the blind within the boundaries of their municipality is undesirable: they do not want the blind to move around in the center of the capital to enjoy a walk with family or friends, to do their shopping and to carry out their daily activities in general.
The project for which no Cypriot citizen who respects the dignity and rights of his fellow human beings with disabilities can be proud, was designed and implemented, like all projects in the capital, behind the backs and in the absence of the blind and people with partial vision of our fellow human beings. Even today, the people in charge of the Municipality of Nicosia and the Mayor of the capital provocatively refuse to cooperate with the officially recognized representative organization of the blind people of Cyprus, based on a relevant regulation of the European Union, remaining attached to dark and anachronistic periods. paternalism, guardianship, compassion and charity, violating the universally accepted principle of human rights “nothing for us, the blind” & # 8211; without us)! “
The Pancyprian Organization of the Blind also quotes photos, which” are relevant “, it writes in its announcement.