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Fall 2007 | Vol. 10 | No. 3
GHSA and CHOP Help Police Promote Child Passenger Safety
Parents rate police officers as a primary source for child passenger safety information, according to the Partners for Child Passenger Safety (PCPS) study at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). Parents also rely heavily on state legislation to keep them abreast of child passenger safety laws. Surprisingly, doctors and the media are not primary sources for this much-needed information, according to the study.
To help police officers provide parents with the most up-to-date child passenger safety information for their state, CHOP has partnered with GHSA to provide some great new resources for State Highway Safety Offices and their law enforcement grantees. Based on a survey of police officers who were also certified child passenger safety technicians, CHOP developed easyto- use educational tools to answer their call for basic child passenger safety information and other reliable sources to recommend to parents. These newly-created resources, which are research-based and have been field-tested with officers from several states, were mailed to all GHSA Members, who were asked to share them with their local law enforcement.
The new tools offer police officers handy educational resources for both themselves and parents. Included are:
- A CD of a short video series on choosing and installing child restraint systems from www.chop.edu/carseat. The videos could be used in officer training.
- A CD of two educational tool templates that can be customized to include a specific state's laws, penalties, website, and phone information before reproduction and distribution.
- A parent handout, "Child
Passenger Safety Websites." This flyer lists three wellmaintained
provide useful and easy-tounderstand
parents. State representatives
should add state-specific
information in the designated
blank area. According to the
CHOP survey, police officers
felt this would be helpful as
a handout at the station, for
community safety events, at
car seat checks, and even when
a driver is pulled over for a
- A police pocket card, "Child Restraint Basics." This handy pocket card will provide officers with basic child passenger safety guidelines in a visually-appealing format. A blank space on the card is designed for GHSA Members to add their specific state's child restraint laws, fines, and any additional information. For increased durability, police officers who were surveyed also request that the cards be laminated before distribution.
In addition to the websites, handout and pocket card, the CD containing the templates also include parent handouts on booster seats and safe seating positions, in both Spanish and English.
Research indicates that both police officers and parents are looking for child passenger safety information to keep them well-informed and updated. With CHOP and GHSA providing these educational tools that can be customized for each individual state, the Association hopes to ensure that police and parents have the tools they need to better enforce existing laws and to keep child passengers safe.