LOCAL election candidate councillor Noel Tuohy claims that other political parties are “playing catch-up with public opinion on election posters.”
Cllr Tuohy said that he was the first candidate in Laois to seek an outright ban on the use of plastic election posters. However, his motion, at a recent council meeting, did not receive sufficient support.
The Portlaoise municipal district councillor said that it is incumbent on all political parties nationally “to agree to sign a pledge to ban election posters, so that everyone is competing in the forthcoming local and European elections on a level playing pitch.”
The Labour party candidate said: “I am determined to stick to my commitment not to use these unsightly plastic posters. These posters are not biodegradable and do lasting and permanent damage to our countryside, nature and the environment.
“It is astonishing how far behind the political parties nationally are on this issue in the face of such a public demand to ban posters, not just in Laois but across the country. It shows a lack of leadership for political parties to be complaining about littering, illegal dumping, climate change and the environment on one hand and then on the other to be using tens of thousands of plastic posters and cable ties for these elections.
“They are not just damaging to the visual amenity this summer when the work of local tidy towns is at its height and, contrary to the nonsense that they are only up for a few weeks, these posters last for hundreds of years and so does the damage they cause to the environment.’’
Cllr Tuohy said that election posters date back to a time “when there was only one TV station and one radio station in the entire country and everyone had to wait for the daily paper to read the death notices. Now it is the planet which is dying in front of our very eyes, yet some politicians continue to stick their heads in the sand.”
Cllr Tuohy maintains that there are countless other ways for all candidates to promote themselves, highlight their policies and ensuring everyone knows they are contesting the elections.
He said: “There are so many other platforms nowadays to promote your profile. Posters are pointless. It is time we consigned them to history.”
‘‘I have imposed my own election poster ban to show support and solidarity with those campaigning for a better environment. We can only succeed in combating climate change for future generations if we do this together. As the slogan says, ‘There is no planet B’,” said cllr Tuohy.