$75,000 in funding will allow three states to expand outreach to help youth in low-
income communities stay safe while walking, biking and scooting
WASHINGTON, Feb. 23, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The Governors Highway Safety Association has awarded grants totaling $75,000 from the National Road Safety Foundation to State Highway Safety Offices (SHSOs) in Colorado, Kentucky and Minnesota to work with community-based groups representing underserved populations to provide safe youth mobility options like walking, biking or riding a scooter. This is the second consecutive year that GHSA and NRSF have provided funding for youth safety initiatives in socioeconomically disadvantaged areas with limited financial resources.
Traffic crashes are one of the leading causes of death for young people in the United States, which is unacceptable and preventable. Nearly 1,100 youth (age 14 and younger) died in traffic crashes in 2020 – up 3% from the year before – and another 139,000 were injured, according to recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Speeding remains incredibly dangerous for all road users, but the impacts are especially pronounced for youth. The percentage of speeding-related pedestrian crashes involving people ages 15 and younger more than doubled between 2018 and 2020, according to a GHSA data analysis. Our roads have become even more dangerous for young road users in the past few years amid a surge in dangerous and reckless driving.
“Youth deserve to get safely to their destination however they choose, without having to get in a car – whether it’s walking, biking, scooting or skateboarding,” said GHSA Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Adkins. “Unfortunately, youth are at risk every time they share the road with motor vehicles. I’m glad that GHSA is once again teaming up with the National Road Safety Foundation to enable three states to expand their outreach and engage with more diverse and low-income communities. Making biking, walking and scooting the norm for more youth will benefit all roadway users.”
The 2023 grants will enable three SHSOs – in Colorado, Kentucky and Minnesota – to support, implement and evaluate youth active transportation safety programs. The specific programs that are funded with these grants include:
- The Colorado Highway Safety Office will partner with Adelante Community Development, a non-profit organization focused on serving Latino families and entrepreneurs, to recruit and train teens as part of the Traffic Safety Youth Advisory Board (TSYAB). These teens will assist in providing their peers with education on pedestrian, bicycle and other safe mobility practices within their community of Commerce City. As a Latina-led nonprofit, Adelante will empower and support the TSYAB teens with resources in both English and Spanish to inform, engage and educate their peers and collect data that can be used to update outdated infrastructure within the Commerce City community.
- The Kentucky Office of Highway Safety will provide funding through a partnership with Tri-State Trails, an alliance of community advocates advancing a vision to connect and expand northern Kentucky’s trail and bikeway network. Funding will be used to install an educational traffic garden in Dayton, Ky. – an interactive space where children can have fun, be active and learn about traffic safety. Upon completion, the traffic garden will be used to teach students bicycle handling skills, road patterns and safety precautions in a safe environment that is separated from motor vehicle traffic.
- The Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) will offer support to the Rochester Police Department to expand its outreach initiative, Rochester Cops & Kids Community Bike Program. Through this partnership, Rochester Police officers will recruit and train youth leaders (explorers and cadets) on pedestrian, bike, scooter and skateboard safety practices so they can educate their peers at events such as bike rodeos. Additionally, funding will be used to distribute safety gear at events and create a multilingual public service announcement to encourage awareness and participation in safe micromobility.
“We must invest in neighborhoods that have been ignored for too long,” said Michelle Anderson, NRSF Director of Operations. “These grants will help deliver equitable, affordable and sustainable transportation solutions to underserved communities and ensure a safer environment for our next generation of road users.”
The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy, enhance program management and promote best practices. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Visit ghsa.org for more information or find us on Facebook and Twitter.
The National Road Safety Foundation, now in its 61st year, produces free videos and teaching materials on distracted driving, speed and aggression, impaired driving, drowsy driving, driver proficiency, pedestrian safety and a host of other safety issues. It also sponsors contests to engage teens in promoting safe driving to their peers and in their communities, partnering nationally with youth advocacy groups including SADD and FCCLA and regionally with auto shows in Chicago and Detroit.
Contact: Adam Snider (GHSA)
202-580-7930, 202-365-8971 (after hours)
David Reich (NRSF)
SOURCE The National Road Safety Foundation
Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/ghsa-and-national-road-safety-foundation-provide-grants-for-safe-youth-mobility-in-underserved-areas-301754586.html
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