Category: MADD

Child Passenger Safety Week

This week is Child Passenger Safety Week, a time to evaluate how to keep our kids safe on the roads.

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Car crashes are a leading cause of death for children, and too many of those are caused by drunk driving. In 2012, 239 child passengers (under age 15) were killed in drunk driving crashes—representing 20 percent of all child traffic fatalities. And of those, more than half (52 percent) were passengers in a vehicle with the drunk driver.

MADD receives more than 17,000 phone calls every year related to child endangerment. No child should be in danger from drunk driving, especially by those entrusted to keep them safe. Drunk driving is criminal and irresponsible, and driving drunk with a child in the vehicle is a form of child abuse.

While 46 states and the District of Columbia have laws enhancing penalties for those who drive drunk with a child passenger in a vehicle, the laws vary widely in severity and definition of a child passenger. For example, in New York it is a felony to drive drunk with a child passenger under the age of 16, while in Wisconsin, the same offense is a misdemeanor. Click here to see if your state has DUI Child Endangerment Laws.

MADD is urging lawmakers to enact legislation to protect our most vulnerable population, children. Please email your representatives letting them know that you want a stronger DUI child endangerment law in your state and that every child deserves a non-drinking designated driver.

If someone you know is driving drunk with a child in the car, we have more information and strategies available for you here. Or call our toll-free, 24-hour Help Line at 877-MADD-HELP.

– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/2014/september/child-passenger-safety-week.html#sthash.21zBddsC.dpuf

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Help at your Fingertips

Originally featured in the 2014 summer edition of MADDvocate®.

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Many survivors of drunk and drugged driving crashes, as well as loved ones of those who’ve died, feel lost and helpless after the crash. While friends and family members are often available in the days immediately surrounding the tragedy, finding a support system that lasts a lifetime can be difficult. That is why MADD’s Victim Services are so vital.

Thanks to the explosion of the Internet and social media, getting these tools is easier than ever. Here are just a few of the avenues that victims can use to connect to other victims, honor loved ones and find much-needed resources:

Tributes

On MADD’s tribute page, victims and survivors can post pictures and memories of their loved ones and read about others with similar stories. Participants can even raise money in the name of a loved one if they choose.

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For years, victims and survivors relied on finding face-to-face support groups and other in-person meetings to connect with others experiencing similar emotions. However, due to location or the demands of busy schedules, these groups weren’t always accessible. The MADD Victim Services Facebook page gives victims and survivors the chance to engage with other victims, ask questions, provide comfort to others or read other victims’ stories.

Virtual Candlelight Vigil

Every holiday season, MADD hosts an online event where friends and relatives of victims and survivors have the opportunity to post something in memory or in honor of a loved one and light a virtual candle. This annual event provides an outlet for emotions during a tough time of year.

Support Materials

MADD offers a wide array of support materials on a number of different topics related to drunk and drugged driving victimization. Whether a victim/survivor needs help navigating the criminal justice system or just wants to know whether what they are feeling is normal, these brochures and workbooks can be downloaded at no charge from any computer.


If you still can’t find what you need online, call MADD ’s National Victim Services Help Line at 1-877-MADD -HELP (877-623-3435), toll free.

Image and information from MADD.org/blog/

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The Power of Parenting

From Maddblog.org
By MADD

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Summer has come to an end, and kids are back at school. But do we parents have the supplies we need to make this a successful school year? No, we’re not talking about backpacks and pencils.We’re talking about the tools every parent needs to keep their kids safe.

Did you know alcohol kills more teens than all other drugs combined? That’s why it is so important to talk with your teens about underage drinking. But we know that this can seem like a daunting task, which is why we created the Power of Parents® program to provide parents with proven tips and tools tohelp your kidsstay alcohol-free this school year.

Here are seven tips for getting through to your teen:

Communicate before a problem starts – Have important discussions now, before there’s blame, anger or punishment. Agree on a time to start talking together about the dangers of alcohol.

Discuss rules and consequences – Explain how you expect your son or daughter to act, and why. Tell your teen plainly that you don’t want him or her drinking. Agree on consequences of broken rules.

Show you care – Gently touch your teen on the arm or back to show affection. Tell your teen you love them and want them to be healthy and safe. Explain that’s why you need to talk together about the dangers of underage drinking.

Pay attention – Even when life gets hectic, take time out to listen to your teen. Monitor where your teen is and what your teen is doing.Share family activities – Have dinner together at least three times a week.

Give and get respect – When your teen talks to you, listen and reply respectfully. Insist that your teen treat you with respect, too.

Enforce consequences consistently – If your teen breaks the rules, stay calm and enforce the consequences.

Click here to get the PDF version of Seven Tips for Connecting with your Teens, as well as helpful conversation starters.

Want to learn more? Get our Parent Handbook for a detailed guide on talking to your teen about alcohol, and our Power of You(th) booklet to help teens take a stand against underage drinking.

– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/2014/august/back-to-school.html#sthash.6DaxksqB.dpuf

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What’s your Tailgating Gameplan?

From: madd.org/blog

Football season is upon us! Are your ready to cheer on your favorite team?

Tailgating is a great way to get together with friends and fellow fans before a game to show your team spirit. However, it can also be a challenging environment to monitor alcohol use.

If you are planning on hosting or participating in a tailgating party, make sure to check out our Tailgating Gameplan, and read our safe tailgating tips to make sure everyone stays safe, healthy and happy this football season.

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No matter how you celebrate or who you cheer for, don’t ruin game day by getting a DUI, or much worse.  Always put safety before the party this football season by designating a non-drinking driver before you leave the house.

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Don’t make the End of Summer the End of Summer’s

From: Blog Like MADD

By MADD

Labor Day is celebrated by many Americans as the symbolic end of summer. With back to school and fall just around the corner, many families take advantage of this long summer weekend and head out on a last summer vacation or a day trip to the beach, pool or lake.

But holidays like Labor Day can be an especially dangerous time on America’s roadways. In 2012, there were 147 people killed in drunk driving crashes over Labor Day weekend. To put that into perspective, throughout the year someone is killed in a drunk driving crash every 51 minutes, on average. Over the Labor Day weekend, that statistic jumps to one every 34 minutes.

Thankfully, law enforcement will be out in force ready to arrest drunk drivers who put lives at risk from August 15 through September 1, covering the end of summer and the busy Labor Day holiday weekend.

Research shows that these campaigns result in a 20-percent decrease in drunk driving deaths. With one person, on average, dying every 34 minutes in a drunk-driving crash over Labor Day weekend, that’s a lot of lives that could be saved!

There are several ways you can help keep your loved ones safe this Labor Day holiday:

Plan for a safe way home with a non-drinking designated driver for you and your loved ones before consuming alcoholThrow a safe party for all of your guestsRecognize and report drunk drivers on the roadways

If you plan to be on the road during this dangerous time period, please be careful, and remember to spread the word that driving after drinking is simply not worth the risk … so don’t take the chance.

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– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/#sthash.xvqgexoB.dpuf

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MADD Statement on Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg’s DWI

 

When I hear of our lawmakers driving while intoxicated it makes my head spin. How in the world will we ever get full cooperation from our lawmakers to change laws that will saves lives if they are busy committing the crime we are asking them to change?


 

MADD supports government officials, regardless of political affiliation, who take drunk driving seriously. At the same time, we are dismayed each time we hear someone has made the choice to drive drunk – especially those we hold to a higher standard, such as elected officials. Drunk driving is 100% preventable and completely unacceptable, no matter the person behind the wheel, their profession or political party.

In the specific case involving Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, MADD Texas publicly expressed disappointment with her actions, and we are grateful that no one was injured or killed. We reiterate that sentiment in light of recent events. Following her sentence, Mrs. Lehmberg offered a monetary donation to MADD Texas, which was accepted and used specifically to serve victims of drunk driving in Texas.

Just like last year’s events now being re-played in the media, we want to steer clear of the politics and focus the story on the importance of making the safe choice to designate a non-drinking driver if alcohol is involved.

– See more at: madd.org/blog

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And the new # is 24!!!

Yesterday, Delaware Governor Jack Markell signed into law a bill that will protect families in Delaware by reducing drunk driving deaths.

The new law requires all drunk drivers convicted with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or greater to use an ignition interlock on their vehicle for at least four months. Offenders with a BAC of .15 or greater or who are repeat offenders would be required to go on the interlock for a longer period.

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Previously, interlock devices were required only for first offenders arrested with a blood-alcohol concentration of .15 or higher or who refused to take a chemical test, and for repeat drunk drivers.

When MADD launched the Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® in 2006 only one state, New Mexico, had interlock legislation for all offenders. Delaware joins Alabama, Mississippi, and New Hampshire, which also passed lifesaving legislation requiring ignition interlocks for all convicted drunk driving offenders this year, bringing the total number of states with mandatory interlock laws to 24.

Similar laws enacted in other states have helped reduce drunk driving deaths. Since Arizona and Oregon implemented their interlock law, drunk driving deaths have decreased by 43 and 42 percent respectively. MADD has made ignition interlocks for all offenders our number one legislative priority because these devices save lives.

MADD applauds the leadership of Representatives Keeley and Smyk and Senate Majority Leader McBride, as well as all Delaware legislators for passing this lifesaving legislation.

For more information on interlocks, please visit www.madd.org/interlock.

– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/2014/august/delaware-interlock.html#sthash.AYF7H7XR.dpuf

 

from MADD.ORG/blog/

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Steps in the right direction

As a supporter of MADD, I was elated to read about  the progress of 2014 MADD Campaign to Elimate Drunk Driving. 2014 has been a very successful year so far by getting new legislation passed to help protect our loved ones from drunk driving.

Four states – Alabama, Mississippi, New Hampshire and Delaware – have passed all offender ignition interlock laws this year! In addition, laws requiring interlocks for first-time offenders with a  BAC of .15 or higher were passed in South Carolina and in Rhode Island.

In Kansas, you helped us get the sunset clause on their current interlock law eliminated, which will means interlocks for all offenders will be a permanent law in Kansas. In West Virginia, a new law that strengthened the states’ all offender law and closed some administrative and technical loopholes. And finally, in Connecticut, a new law passed that makes the state truly all offender.

And we’re not done yet. We are still working hard in several other states to get laws passed this year, including New Jersey, Ohio, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania.  If you live in one of these states, click here to email your lawmakers in support of lifesaving interlock legislation.

The passage of ignition interlock laws is a key element of MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving®. Requiring all convicted drunk drivers to use ignition interlocks to prove they are sober before they can start their vehicles has been shown to save lives and stop drunk driving. Click here to learn more about ignition interlocks

We are now one step closer to our vision of a nation without drunk driving!

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From www.madd.org/blog/

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Alcohol Ads and the Effects on our Teens

from MADD.org/blog/

A study published in the July 2014 issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs revealed that the brands of alcohol popular among underage drinkers are the same ones most heavily advertised in magazines read by youth. The findings provide further evidence that alcohol ads can encourage young people to drink.

The researchers looked at alcohol ads that ran in U.S. magazines in 2011, with a focus on ads for the top 25 alcohol brands consumed by underage drinkers. Those brands were advertised more heavily in magazines read by young people than 308 other alcohol brands that are less popular with underage drinkers, the investigators found.

Compared to the other brands, the most popular brands were five to nine times more likely to heavily expose 18- to 20-year-olds to their magazine ads, the findings showed.

Because of the dangers associated with underage drinking, MADD is concerned about the effects that alcohol advertisements have on our youth.

All of the ads in the study were in complete compliance with the industry’s self-regulatory guidelines, which suggest that alcohol ads should be restricted to magazines with less than 30 percent of readers who are younger than 21. However, MADD believes in stricter standards, including prohibiting advertising to audiences with less than 90 percent adults aged 21 and older viewership.

Since parents cannot always control the type of advertisements their teens are exposed to, it is important to talk with your teens early and often about the dangers of underage drinking. MADD’s Power of Parents® program can provide the tools you need to start this potentially lifesaving conversation with your teen.

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Click here to download the free Parent Handbook.

– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/2014/july/effects-of-alcohol-ads.html#sthash.NpOuaTA0.dpuf

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A Promise to my Son in Heaven

My Dearest Michael,

I miss you every single day. I miss your music, your laughter and your zest for life. I can not believe that it will be 9 years since I’ve last seen you, talk to you, joked with you, told you I love you.

No amount of time served by the person responsible for all of this hurt, makes it better. There is no justice for this broken heart. I will continue to remind people of my beautiful and sweet son. Your memory will live. I will continue to spread the word about drinking and driving. I will continue to talk about what people don’t want to hear. I will continue writing about a subject no one wants to read about.

I will be your voice my Son. My heart hurts everyday but everyday, I will try as hard as I can to live my my life with joy in my heart and in appreciation in all that God has ever given me. Ultimately, even on the best of days, I hurt, I am in pain over losing you. I promise, I will continue to do the best I can. I will laugh and joke and smile. I will speak for those who can’t. I will give of myself to causes that are important. I will serve the lord and take action within my community. I will turn this pain into my life’s work. I will do this in your memory.

Until we meet again,

Mom

 

Michael – September 21,1987- July 24, 2005

Michael

 

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