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U.S. TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY SLATER APPLAUDS BLACK MAYORS FOR LEADERSHIP PROMOTING SEAT BELT USE

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

American Government Topics:  Rodney E. Slater

U.S. TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY SLATER APPLAUDS BLACK MAYORS FOR LEADERSHIP PROMOTING SEAT BELT USE

U.S. Department of Transportation
April 28, 2000

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Bill Adams
Friday, April 28, 2000
Telephone: 202-366-5580
DOT 85-00

DALLAS —U.S. Transportation Secretary Rodney E. Slater today applauded the National Conference of Black Mayors (NCBM) for its "Mayor’s Challenge to Buckle Up America," promoting seat belt use among all motorists, especially African Americans.

"Repeatedly we see that the violence of traffic crashes is color blind – all of us, our children and our families, are affected by crashes and we all must buckle up. I encourage everyone to take up the Mayor’s Challenge, to go back to their communities, encouraging them and inspiring them to join with us to save lives and prevent injuries," Secretary Slater said to the mayors.

Secretary Slater singled out NCBM President, Mayor Jesse Norwood of Pritchard, Ala., and Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk, who will lead the Mayor’s Challenge, for their leadership roles in focusing attention on the importance of using seat belts and for instituting the Mayor’s Challenge. The challenge will take place between July 1 and Dec. 1, 2000. It challenges cities to a competition, with recognition going to the cities with the greatest increases in child safety seat and seat belt use in the six-month period. The winners will be announced at the 2001 NCBM convention.

During the convention, the NCBM presented Secretary Slater its President’s Award. The award recognizes Secretary Slater’s contributions to advancing the NCBM’s mission and goals and his leadership in saving lives by promoting seat belt use, especially among African Americans.

Secretary Slater also discussed with the mayors his two-week multi-modal tour across America to promote the Clinton-Gore administration’s vision of a transportation system that enhances safety and mobility while meeting the needs of all Americans.

During the tour, he engaged transportation experts, state and local government officials, and business leaders in "2025 Visioning Sessions" to explore the future of transportation and how transportation can become safer, make communities more livable, and contribute to the economic and cultural vitality of cities and rural communities across America.

The visioning sessions are designed to help the U.S. Department of Transportation and other public and private sector leaders formulate a new vision of transportation and in crafting a new policy architecture for transportation decision-making to bring such a system into being. The sessions also will help the Department prepare for an International Transportation Symposium in Washington, D.C., this fall, which will highlight best practices and innovative ideas around the world. The symposium will be hosted by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

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