Background Almost 5 million motorcycles are on our roads today. Over 400,000 more are added each year. With 23 Million children (14 years below) in elementary schools, many are transported by motorcycles, often without helmets and using unsafe practices. As of 2014, over 1/3 of fatal crashes involve motorcycles and there are no laws covering children riders.
Methods Safe Kids Worldwide Philippines, supported by Safe Kids Worldwide, developed a pilot Safe School Zone Project in 2014. First, the public elementary school was selected. The school chosen had the largest student population fronting the most dangerous highway in the country. Mobilisation and organisational activities proceeded covering the parents/teachers association, school principal/teacher- coordinators and the student leaders; followed with the village and the city government officials and finally the regional and national officials. Implemented a baseline study, then periodic project update meetings.
A parallel program for the enactment of the essential City Ordinance and National Legislation was undertaken.
To support the implementation of the law, the Safe Kids Helmet Program was launched in 3 cities of Metro Manila covering 17 schools.
Results With SKWP’s active support, Quezon City enacted in April 2015 the landmark ordinance “Regulating the transport of children by means of a motorcycle”. A parallel Senate bill was approved in May 2015, with the National law Republic Act No.10666 “Children’s Safety on Motorcycles Act of 2015” signed by the President on July 21, 2015. SKWP then launched the Safe Kids Helmet program in the 3 cities of Metro Manila covering 17 schools.
Conclusions With the active collaboration of the key stakeholders and an aggressive advocacy, a seemingly unreachable goal of enacting a National law for Children Safety was achieved. An effective dissemination and implementation program is now essential for a successful Safe Kids Helmet Program.
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