29 April 2008, Dublin and 13 May 2008, Derry
In April 2008 the Centre began to market the Border People website [www.borderpeople.info] as a ‘one-stop shop’ advising the cross border citizen on everything from taxation, social security and job seeking to health, banking, housing and telecommunications. The Centre was commissioned by the North South Ministerial Council to develop and mange this website which is part-financed by the EU Peace Programme.
On 13 May, the Deputy First Minster, Martin McGuinness addressed a public meeting in Derry and referred to the Border People website as ‘an important online resource to help people find the answers to their [cross-border] questions’. Other speakers included the Joint Heads of the North South Ministerial Council, Mary Bunting and Tom Hanney, the Chief Executive of the SEUPB, Mr Pat Colgan and Andy Pollak and Patricia Clarke from the Centre for Cross Border Studies. A previous Southern event was hosted by Claire Byrne, Newstalk 106fm and TV3 in Dublin on 29 April.
Over the summer months the website will be will widely publicised on radio, regional newspapers and online information services across the island of Ireland. Advertising will be concentrated along the major bus and train routes through border towns, and on high foot fall areas such as public libraries, surgeries, cinemas and town halls. HR managers from major cross-border employers will also be targeted.
In addition, Citizens Advice Northern Ireland have been commissioned to complete a statistical research project, relating to their Borderwise cross-border advice and information service, which will profile the current need for cross-border mobility information and identify issues concerning the sustainability of the website.