US Walk to School Day connects pupils and leaders worldwide
Walk to School Day celebrated its 25th anniversary as events across the United States link young voices, parents, schools and local leaders together to demand safe, healthy streets for life.
Over 2,200 Walk to School Day events took place across in 44 states and Washington, D.C., organized by the National Center for Safe Routes to School, including one joined by Deputy Assistant Secretary for Safety Policy for the U.S. Department of Transportation Robin Hutcheson and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Acting Deputy and expected Presidential Nominee, Dr. Steven Cliff.
“This year, perhaps more than ever, Walk to School Day is an opportunity to speak to the many different needs of communities across America,” said Nancy Pullen-Seufert, Director of the National Center for Safe Routes to School which coordinates Walk to School Day in the US. “For communities that have infrastructure issues near schools, this is an opportunity to highlight those needs. Walk to School Day is a great opportunity to raise the awareness of child pedestrians and remind everyone that safer school zones are safer communities for everyone.”
“On average, a pedestrian was killed every 85 minutes in a traffic crash in 2019 — a haunting fact,” said Dr. Steven Cliff. “We must all work together to prevent and eliminate crashes leading to serious injuries and deaths of our nation’s pedestrians.”
“FHWA is excited to recognize the hundreds of schools participating in Walk to School Day 2021,” added Acting Federal Highway Administrator Stephanie Pollack. “We’re proud to work with the National Center for Safe Routes to School to help young people safely get to and from one of their most important destinations.”
National Center for Safe Routes to School is a key partner for the Child Health Initiative and co-ordinates the Vison Zero for Youth Programme as well as the Walk to School Day. Other countries also celebrated the day with FIA Foundation partners including ITDP in Mexico and Child Safe in South Africa hosting events.
“Walk to School Day is a celebration of the global movement to lower speeds to protect children. Life-saving low speeds ensure that children can exercise their right to a safe and healthy journey not just on one day, but every day,” said Natalie Draisin, Director of the FIA Foundation North America Office and United Nations Representative.