Every October, a group of breast cancer survivors puts up signs around the Naugatuck Valley for the Valley Goes Pink, a non-profit that aims to raise breast cancer awareness and the importance of early detection.
The signs are to advertise a number of breast cancer awareness month events, but the ones Anna Durante, a breast cancer survivor, placed on Bridgeport Avenue in Shelton are gone.
"You couldn't just let it sit there for like another three weeks? It's helping us to raise money, the Valley Goes Pink to raise money. That's all it's doing. We're not selling anything,” said Durante, who is angry because Connecticut’s Department of Transportation is behind the removal.
Jeff Caporaso is upset, too. His father died of breast cancer, so when he saw DOT taking the signs on Thursday, he snapped some photos.
Kevin Nursick, a ConnDOT spokesperson, is aware of the situation and said the crews did nothing wrong.
“If we see a sign, regardless of its content or what the message is, that poses a safety concern in our estimation, we have a duty to act and remove that sign to protect the public,” Nursick said.
In this case, he said workers saw an immediate problem with visibility.
“We go to great lengths to make sure we are taking various sightlines into consideration. Not just the road that you are traveling on, but sight lines from driveways, etc., sightlines from intersections,” Nursick said.
Durante doesn’t understand the problem.
“I don't see how a small sign that size can obstruct any view, from any driver,” said Durante.
Nursick stands by the decision and adds that no matter the reason for removal, it is illegal to place signs in that area of the road, known as the DOT Right of Way.
But the ladies who battled breast cancer aren’t going down without a fight.
“If that's a state law, no signs should be there. None. No other type of sign,” Durante said. She fears some of her signs were thrown away, resulting in a loss of money.
Nursick said a ConnDOT employee personally returned all of the signs to a Valley Goes Pink member.
Learn more about the Valley for Pink here, including details for a fundraising brunch Durante is hosting this Sunday.