Why no live coverage of Special Olympics?

It is with great disappointment that I learned recently that RTÉ has no plans to provide any live coverage of the Special Olympics National finals.

Next weekend’s finals will be the culmination of four years’ training by thousands of athletes, hundreds of thousands of volunteering hours, not to mention the social, educational and mental health benefits for the athletes. The national finals will feature 1,500 athletes competing in 14 different sports, supported by 3,000 volunteers and thousands of family members who will travel to Limerick.

Considering that this will be one of the biggest sporting events in our country this year, I feel it deserves live coverage. As Limerick is the city of culture we are also missing out on promoting the city as a tourist destination. Following RTÉ’s response, I set up an online petition urging them to reconsider their decision and have been delighted with the ongoing support that it has received. At a time when Ireland is promoting itself as an equal, inclusive society, I believe we are missing a huge opportunity here to show inclusivity, equality, courage and sportsmanship at its best. As a mother of an athlete who is fortunate to have qualified for the finals I wouldn’t miss this opportunity for the world.

Senator Mary Moran

Leinster House

Dublin 2

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Saturday, February 27, 2021

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