Safe Routes to School E-News
Issue #169: April 2020
- Advocating for Active Transportation During COVID-19
- Safe Routes During COVID-19: Resource Tracking Document
- Active Transportation and Allyship During COVID-19
- Financial Resources for Nonprofits
- Safe Routes to Parks During COVID-19
- California News: Formulating a Statewide Complete Streets Action Plan
- Congress Tackles Relief and Looks Ahead to Recovery
- Customized Support for Safe Routes to School in Colorado
- Learn How to Influence News Media to Move From Victim-Blaming to Solutions in Reporting Traffic Crashes
- Anti-Street Harassment Week is April 19-25
- Tips for Pedaling Safely During COVID-19 from PeopleForBikes
- Free Resources from I'm Safe
The coronavirus response has left schools closed, businesses shuttered, and public transportation ridership has plummeted, yet it has shined a spotlight on the importance of walking and bicycling in communities across the country. We've collected ideas and resources for advocating for active transportation during covid-19. https://bit.ly/3azXkSE
As we adapt to living and working during the COVID-19 pandemic, members of the Safe Routes to School listserv have organically been crowdsourcing ideas for how to continue engaging youth and families while schools are closed, opportunities for remote learning and working, adjustments to messaging, policy opportunities created by this pandemic, and more. As the suggestions grow, we are aiming to add more structure to the conversations happening on the listserv so that people can have one document to go through rather than sifting through all the emails on the listserv related to COVID-19. To that aim, we have created a Safe Routes to School Listserv COVID-19 tracking document where we have compiled all the resources that have been shared so far and which we will continue to update.
We hope that you find this a useful resource and you will both share resources you find here as well as add resources you are seeing elsewhere. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
While many of us feel afraid or destabilized during this period of uncertainty, we recognize that this crisis is even riskier for people experiencing poverty and communities made vulnerable by our lack of a strong social safety net. Here are a few suggestions for ways that bicycle, pedestrian, and Safe Routes to School advocates can take action in support of other issues during the COVID-19 pandemic.
While we at Safe Routes Partnership are not legal or financial experts, we do follow Congressional action closely, including the new legislation to help address the wide-ranging impact of COVID-19. We thought it would be helpful to round up what we see as the most important options for nonprofits in the Safe Routes space looking for ways to stay solvent and keep their staff.
The unusual circumstances of our daily lives these past few weeks have highlighted that safe routes to accessible outdoor spaces are a tremendous community asset. They provide enough spaciousness to enjoy public space (read: escape your home) and feel like we are still part of our communities without risking further spread of the virus. Here's how we make the case for sustaining access to outdoor spaces during the pandemic.
More Safe Routes to Parks Resources:
- Connect: While working from home, keep the conversation about safe routes to parks going by joining the Safe Routes to Parks listserve. Click here to join or email email@example.com.
- Fact Sheet: Standalone Policies to Support Safe Routes to Parks
- Fact Sheet: Keep Up the Momentum! Sustaining Safe Routes to Parks Efforts
Last fall, Governor Newsom unfortunately vetoed SB 127, the Complete Streets bill. In his veto message, the Governor promised that new leadership at CalTrans would find ways to increase active transportation investments. Building on that, we have been working with CalTrans on a Complete Streets Action plan. Read more on our blog.
Last week, Congress passed the CARES Act, which was the third in a series of new laws aimed at addressing the wide-ranging impact of COVID-19. The $2.2 trillion bill included a series of emergency relief measures addressing people, affected industry, the healthcare system, and more.
Specific to transportation, CARES includes $25 billion that will flow out to transit providers across the country. We joined an effort led by Transportation for America to advocate for this, given that transit agencies have suffered significant loss of ridership and revenue while still maintaining service for essential workers. This emergency transit funding can be used for a wide range of impacts from COVID-19, including operating costs to maintain service, to replace lost revenue, to purchase protective equipment for transit workers, and to pay for leave for workers unable to work due to service cuts. Depending on the length of this crisis, more funds may be needed to keep transit running; we will continue to partner with Transportation for America as new needs arise. Read more on our blog.
Earlier this year, we kicked off a project with the Colorado Department of Transportation to support the already amazing Safe Routes to School efforts happening around the state! Our Consulting Services team is providing a series of five webinars designed specifically for Colorado, conducting a census of local Safe Routes to School programs throughout the state, and creating new resources for the program on school siting. If you’re looking for training, materials development, or other technical assistance for your state, regional, or local Safe Routes to School program, contact the Safe Routes Partnership’s Consulting Services team.
Learn how you can influence leadership and the news media to move from victim-blaming to solutions and change the narrative in reporting on traffic crashes concerning those biking and walking. In an online training with a sliding scale fee Tues, April 14th, 11 am to noon PDT Pedal Love.org’s Melissa Balmer and Jim Brown are joined by Tara Goddard, associate professor of urban planning at Texas A&M University, and Kelcie Ralph, PhD, assistant professor of planning and public policy at Rutgers University, to share first-of-its-kind research that shows how word choice and framing in news reporting about fatal pedestrian crashes causes readers to blame victims and place less importance on roadway safety improvements and 5 key strategies to change the narrative with the news media, leadership and the police. Click here to read more about the study and register for the briefing. The fee is on a sliding scale with $20 suggested price.
A growing number of studies demonstrate that street harassment is a global problem. Join the #EndSH conversation during April 19-25 to share and learn about how you can take action against street harassment to advance Safe Routes.
In a world turned upside down for many of us, PeopleForBikes is still working to make it safe and easy for people to ride to their essential jobs or to stay healthy and active. Check out our tips for pedaling safely. We're all in this together.
Take advantage of free I'm Safe! video streaming and activity pages. For those who have children at home, I'm Safe! is offering complimentary access to three I'm Safe! videos via Vimeo as well as safety activity pages and tip sheets that you can share.