Transport Minister addresses Parachute's youth road safety symposium

Students call for a National Teen Driver Safety Week

OTTAWA, Oct. 23, 2013 /CNW/ - Transport Minister Lisa Raitt yesterday congratulated attendees at a national youth road safety symposium on their leadership in working to make roads safer in their communities. Youth Ambassadors with Parachute's national teen driver safety Project Gearshift joined Ottawa-area youth to address traffic crashes as the leading cause of teenage deaths and to endorse calls for a National Teen Driver Safety Week the third week in October.

"The Government of Canada is committed to ensuring the safety and security of our transportation system and I am very pleased to be here today to support this important initiative," said Minister Raitt. "We all have a role to play in the improvement of road safety if we want to achieve our objective of making Canada's roads the safest in the world."

"We are honoured today to have Minister of Transport, Lisa Raitt, recognize the efforts of Canadian youth to save their lives and those of their friends," said Louise Logan, President and CEO of Parachute. "I congratulate our youth leaders for recognizing this important issue and for making action plans to address it."

Youth had gathered to learn more about road safety and to develop strategies to take back to their own communities. As part of this, the students, with Parachute and State Farm®, are urging Canadians to recognize the third week in October each year as National Teen Driver Safety Week, to focus attention on this serious issue.  A diverse group including police, health units and industry have endorsed this call to action.

As a new report from the Traffic Injury Research Foundation finds, while the number of teen drivers killed in road crashes is declining over time, the problem is far from resolved. TIRF notes that in 2010, 16- to 19-year-old drivers were still 30% more likely to be killed in road crashes than drivers 20 and older. Males account for almost three quarters of all teen driver deaths.

About Project Gearshift
Project Gearshift (www.projectgearshift.ca), a program of Parachute, is designed to raise awareness of teen driver safety issues in Canada. It gives youth the tools to identify and tackle the main traffic issues in their communities - from pedestrian safety in urban areas to drinking and driving in rural communities.

About Parachute
Parachute (www.parachutecanada.org) is a national, charitable organization dedicated to preventing injuries and saving lives. Parachute officially came into being in July 2012 and unites the former organizations of Safe Communities Canada, Safe Kids Canada, SMARTRISK and ThinkFirst Canada into one leader in injury prevention. Parachute's injury prevention solutions, knowledge mobilization, public policy and social awareness efforts are designed to help Canadians reduce their risks of injury while achieving Parachute's vision of an injury-free Canada where Canadians enjoy long lives lived to the fullest. See us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/parachutecanada), or join us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/parachutecanada)

About State Farm
State Farm has been serving Canadians since 1938. State Farm is a Fortune 100 company and is the leading Property and Casualty insurer in North America with more than 80 million policyholders. In addition to providing affordable car insurance rates, (link to http://www.statefarm.ca/insurance/auto/) State Farm has more than 500 Canadian agents and 1,700 employees providing insurance and financial services including mutual funds, life insurance, vehicle loans, critical illness, disability, home and auto insurance to our customers in Ontario, Alberta and New Brunswick. For more information, please visit www.statefarm.ca, join us on Facebook www.facebook.com/statefarmcanada, follow us on Twitter http://twitter.com/statefarmcanada, or see us on YouTube www.youtube.com/statefarm.

Image with caption: "The Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Transport (right) joins Parachute President and CEO, Louise Logan, (left) and Parachute Youth Ambassadors for a youth symposium on teen driver safety in Ottawa. Parachute is calling for Canadians to recognize a National Teen Driver Safety Week the third week of October. Photo credit: Lois Siegel (CNW Group/Parachute)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20131023_C6333_PHOTO_EN_32420.jpg

SOURCE: Parachute

For further information:

Media Contacts 
Kathy Blair, Parachute
647-776-5125, kblair@parachutecanada.org


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