Zero Traffic Deaths Campaign: Involvement Guide for Local Government Officials

January 28, 2021

Leading transportation safety leaders, a partnership of the Road to Zero Coalition, the Vision Zero Network, Towards Zero Deaths and the 16 local chapters of Families for Safe Streets — is asking the Biden Administration to commit to a safer future. In a letter and a three-month, public multi-media campaign, the coalition will ask President Biden to commit to ending traffic deaths by 2050.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

The Coalition is seeking public officials to lend their support to this effort. There are multiple ways you can help advance a safer vision for the future. 

  1. SIGN OUR LETTER: Partners are asking the Biden Administration to commit to ending traffic deaths by 2050. You can add your signature here. 
  2. CONTRIBUTE TO OUR SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN. Share our Letter on Twitter or Facebook. Or go further: Record a Video (or make a personalized “postcard”) for the coalition to share in its social media channels. Detailed instructions for how to make a video can be found on Page 2 of this document. 
  3. SPEAK AT OUR PRESS CONFERENCE: National Safety Council, the managing partner of the Road to Zero Coalition will be hosting a Press Conference the last week of February. The group is seeking one or two local government officials that would be willing to speak to the importance of improving traffic safety and public support the campaign’s ask. 
  4. AUTHOR AN OP-ED: During the three-month campaign, the campaign hopes to place 10 op-eds in both large media outlets and those targeted to more specialized audiences. We seek one to three local officials who would be willing to author an op-ed supporting the push for the 2050 zero traffic fatality timeline. We will help the officials place the editorials. 

Any questions can be directed to communications consultant Angie Schmitt at angie@3mphplanning.com or by phone (614) 499-3239. 

VIDEO POSTCARD INSTRUCTIONS for Elected Officials/Dignitaries 

President Biden #ZeroTrafficDeaths Campaign 

Thank you for your willingness to participate in our call to action! 

As many of you know, Joe Biden suffered a tragic loss due to a crash. His wife Neilia and their 13-month-old daughter Naomi were killed in 1972. Biden’s election presents an unprecedented opportunity for federal transportation policy. Together, we can ensure that early in his administration, President Biden sets a national goal of zero traffic fatalities and serious injuries by 2050. 

We will share your call to action on social media during Biden’s initial days in office. With your permission, we also will use your story to continue our fight for safe streets. 

Note that in these short messages for social media, we are not calling for any specific solutions. We want to keep it focused on the request for President Biden for a high level commitment to zero traffic deaths using a data-driven, safe systems approach. There are details on what that entails on the ZeroTrafficDeaths.org website. Please try to use the word crash or collision not accident. (See CrashNotAccident.org for more on that.) When we share the messages on social media, we will list the website and campaign hashtag to provide the context. 

RECORDING A SHORT SECOND VIDEO MESSAGE YOURSELF (20-30 SECONDS) 

General Instructions 

➔ The video should be very short (20-30 seconds) for sharing on social media. You likely have much more to say, but these are meant to be short and impactful. 

➔ By now you’ve probably had enough video calls to know a good quiet spot with nice light. Natural light or soft light is best (this video has good tips). 

➔ Use the outline below to prepare your short message. 

➔ Writing out notes can help you move the story from your head and decide what to include but try not to read your notes when you record. 

➔ Practice a few times. Pretend you are talking to a good friend (or actually practice with someone). 

➔ Try to use your device (computer, phone, etc) with the best camera and, if possible, record as an MP4 file. For smartphones, either front-facing or “selfie-style” works. Place the phone on a level and stable surface (not in hands). If necessary, we can edit out any extra “set-up” time. 

➔ Please make sure your phone is in horizontal (landscape) mode. 

➔ Submit using the instructions below. 

Outline 

Make a short message: 

➔ INTRODUCE YOURSELF. Explain why you think traffic safety is important and how it effects you/your work. 

➔ CALL TO ACTION: President Biden, 40,000 people will die on our roads this year. These deaths are preventable. I’m asking you to take bold action. With safer streets, better policies and regulations we can end traffic deaths by 2050. (Does not need to be word-for-word, reading can come off as very scripted.) 

We will share on social media with the campaign hashtag, website, and tag you and others. 

SHARE YOUR MESSAGE WITH A “E-POSTCARD” 

We can prepare a visual message for you similar to this one. 

➔ Find a picture you wish to share 

➔ Prepare a typed message of one to two sentences (ideally no more than 40 words) that you want to say to President Biden. 

➔ Submit the picture and your remarks, using the instructions below and we will compile it for you 

➔ Submit the picture and your remarks using the instructions below. 

HOW TO SUBMIT YOUR STORY: 

Email the video or photo and quote to angie@3mphplanning.com

Questions? Challenges? Please be in touch at info@familiesforsafestreets.org or angie@3mphplanning.com and we will walk you through it! 

Vision Zero Network is a national nonprofit advancing the goal of safe mobility for all — zero traffic deaths or severe injuries among all road users. 

Toward Zero Deaths (TZD) is a national strategy on highway safety to advocate for eliminating serious injuries and deaths on our nation’s roadways, conceptualized by safety practitioners, researchers, advocates, and others from a variety of disciplines. The strategy calls for all stakeholders to champion the idea that one death on our nation’s roadways is too many, and we must all work together to bring the annual number of roadway deaths down to zero. 

Road to Zero Coalition is a coalition of over 1,500 organizations committed to reducing traffic fatalities to zero by 2050. Through its multi-modal, cross-sector three pillar approach, the Coalition works to implement the Road to Zero strategic report. 

Families for Safe Streets (FSS) confronts the epidemic of traffic violence by advocating for life-saving changes and providing support to those who have been impacted by crashes. Comprised of individuals who have been injured or lost loved ones, FSS was founded in 2014 in New York City and is growing as a national movement with chapters across the country.