MVRCR's Multilingual Traffic Safety Program Wins 2018 Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee Chair Award

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The GTSC Chair Award was presented to MVRCR at the NYS Highway Safety Symposium in Lake Placid, NY on Wednesday October 17, 2018. To be considered for the award the organization or individual had to make efficient use of public resources and produce programs that are innovative, superior and highly successful in promoting traffic safety.

The Multilingual Traffic Safety Program at MVRCR delivers a comprehensive Traffic Safety Program that is culturally appropriate and targets the various ethnic groups found within the City of Utica and Oneida County. Approximately 20% of residents in Utica are foreign-born and 1 in 4 individuals in the City limits speak a language other than English at home. These communities rely on MVRCR for the translation and interpretation of critical traffic safety information delivered through this innovative program by Project Director Lisanne Divine. Traffic Safety Information can be accessed through translated brochures, educational classes, community events, and one on one instruction as well as driver training simulators.

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In 2017, MVRCR facilitated traffic safety education to 137 newly arriving refugees and reached another 710 individuals through their quarterly traffic safety community presentations. These sessions covered several priority issues such as distracted and impaired driving, pedestrian and bicycle safety, child passenger safety and occupant protection. Oneida County residents representing 11 different language groups received vital traffic safety information in a variety of ways. Through multilingual community education over 600 participants were reached with Permit and License preparation information, nearly 700 were reached regarding responsible driving practices and the agency received over 500 visits for individualized feedback, utilization of our computer lab, and driving simulators. Bicycle Safety information was provided at several community events with an estimated reach of over 2,000 people.

While program funding for car seats was eliminated in 2017, MVRCR worked to secure over 100 car seats through outside donations. This enabled them to continue their Child Safety Seat Distribution and Education Program, which consists of hands-on education along with the distribution of free car seats. Translated Child Passenger Safety information is available on our website in the following languages Arabic, Burmese, French, Karen, Kinyarwanda, Nepali, Pashto, Russian, Somali, Spanish, Swahili and Vietnamese.

Lisanne and her colleagues at MVRCR are dedicated traffic safety partners that provide an invaluable service to our community. Their efforts, along with their collaborations with other local traffic safety partners, greatly contribute to GTSC’s mission of reducing crashes, injuries and fatalities in New York State.

For more information about the program contact Project Director, Lisanne Divine 315.738.1083 lisanned@mvrcr.org

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