Building inspection officials told Floyd Medical Center some of the pink-and-green silhouettes of women in various poses had to be removed because they were located too close to state highways, violating right-of-way regulations.
The silhouettes, fondly called paper dolls by many around town, were put up as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
City Manager John Bennett said the hospital was asked to remove the silhouettes from state highway rights of way, which included locations near the Ledbetter interchange and a few places on Second Avenue. “All the ones (located) on private property are their business,” Bennett said.
Haley Walker, a spokeswoman at FMC, said the cutouts located at Porto Futurus, stone arches at the Ledbetter Interchange, are a joint partnership with the Rome Area Council for the Arts.
She said FMC was given four hours notice before the cutouts had to be removed. The building inspection department received a phone complaint about the silhouettes.
Howard Gibson, chief building inspector, said in some cases all FMC had to do was move the cutouts to the other side of a sidewalk to make them legal.
Walker said there were about 58 total silhouettes placed earlier this month. She said 25 were taken down Thursday and a few others have been stolen.
“Removing these dolls would effectively remove the empowering message of breast health awareness from public view. This message is too important to lose,” read a statement on the Breast Center at Floyd’s Facebook page.
Floyd Medical Center also launched a YouTube video Thursday to tell its side of the story.
Hi-Tech Signs, 1018 N. Fifth Ave., has agreed to print yard signs for individuals to place on private property.
“The hospital called us. They wanted to keep the message out there,” said Matt Micheals.
There are two different designs and each sign is 18-inches by 12-inches.
With October winding down, Walker said there is not time for Hi-Tech to recreate the silhouette design, but the rectangular signs will show the cutout design and include the words “Knowledge is Power,” the breast cancer awareness slogan.
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