Wednesday 17 January 2018

Shop owner receives threat over Yes poster in his shop window

Jason Kennedy

Jason Kennedy

A Tipperary businessman who received a letter telling him his store window would be broken if he didn't take a Vote Yes poster down said he will keep the poster up as a matter of principle.

The note, which read 'Take down that poster now or I'll give you a gift of my empty-wine bottle @ 2 am', arrived in the Nenagh deli today.

Co-owner of Country Choice Peter Ward said he was surprised by the letter, but that he will not remove the poster.

"I wasn’t expecting it. There’s a lot of newspaper cuttings in it and a lot of offensive material that I'd rather not talk about," Mr Ward said.

"Nenagh town has an amazing new camera system. I’m hoping it will work well if someone puts a brick through the window."

Although the poster has received mixed comments from his customers, Mr Ward is glad he has the Yes Equality poster up and he won't be removing it until the referendum is over.

"It reflects my view and the view of my family. I’m not actively campaigning, but it is a personal issue," he said.

"There’s no way I’ll take it down. Life’s not worth living if you don’t have convictions."

Just over two weeks before the vote, the response in North Tipperary has been broadly positive according to North Tipperary for Equality chairperson Damien McKelvey.

"People are engaging and we are seeing positive reactions at the doorsteps. North Tipperary for Equality are knocking on doors, engaging in conversation, answering questions and are clear in our message," he said.

"We are asking people to remain positive and respectful. We want people to contact us directly if they are subject to any abuse or negativity. We are here to offer support and advise."

The most recent Sunday Independent/Millward Brown poll showed 66pc of people are in favour of same-sex marriage, 21pc against and the remainder undecided.

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