Councillor Kevin Campbell. (2412MM30)
Sinn Féin councillor Kevin Campbell was speaking after concerns were raised about the levels of dog fouling in the Bishop’s Field Park in the Creggan area of the city.
Colr. Campbell said users of the park, which includes a children’s play area, have complained about the high instances of dog fouling in the area in recent weeks.
“I have had numerous complaints from residents regarding people taking their dogs for a walk in the Bishop’s Field Park and allowing them to foul the area. This is an absolute disgrace,” he said.
The former Mayor said people should be able to use the park without worrying about dog fouling.
“This play park is the pride and joy of Creggan and it was a long hard battle for the Triax Neighbourhood Management Team to secure over £1 million of funding to build it.
“This is an environment where children should feel safe as they play.
“However, there are some people out there who have a complete disregard for the health of our children. Everyone knows the dangers of dog faeces especially to children, yet they continue to ignore these dangers,” he said.
The Creggan councillor said he has raised the issue with Derry City Council officials,
“People are allowing their dogs to foul on the walk way and green area as well as the G2 Muga pitch. I have spoken to Derry City Council and they have informed me they have been dealing with this problem for a while now, and cleaning the Muga on a regular basis.
“I will now be calling on Council to have signage erected immediately informing people that they will be prosecuted and fined if they are caught and I will be pressing council to be proactive on this issue,” he said.
One local resident said some the situation has got worse over the last few weeks.
“Usually the park is fine and is very well supported by the local community but recently it has become a nightmare with the amount of dog dirt,” he said.
“I regularly take my children to the park but if you can’t let them run around and enjoy themselves without worrying about them standing in something, it is not worth it.
“As well as the mess it creates dog dirt can also be a real health risk and can permanently damage the eyesight of children.
“I would appeal to all dog owners out there to act responsibly and clean up after their dogs and not just wait for someone else to do it. These people just walk away and don’t think any more about it but it could cause lasting damage to a child’s health and eyesight.”