Posts Tagged ‘MADD Nebraska’

I was invited to go to the third shift briefing last night, November 30th, as the Lincoln Police Department kicked-off their annual holiday campaign enforcing our laws that protect us from impaired drivers.  First off, I want to thank State Senator Tony Fulton for coming along with MADD and talking about important legislation fast approaching the Unicameral in January.

Second, I want to express my sincere appreciation for the work all law enforcement officers do daily to ensure the public is safe, convictions are made and offenders are held accountable – especially when it comes to drunk driving.  Drunk driving is a  crime that is violent and randomly impacts friends, family and our community.  Driving drunk is not a mistake – drunk driving is a choice and I for one appreciate our law enforcement officers for making sure those who make the choice to drive drunk are apprehended.

Here at MADD, all of us want to support the heroes who keep our roads safe. Through research, high-visibility law enforcement has proven to be effective in catching drunk drivers and acts as a deterrent by discouraging  others from driving drunk.  MADD applauds the work done in Lancaster County with 2,939 arrests for DUI, in 2009, and an astounding 2,221 made by the Lincoln Police Department. That is an average of 6 arrests for DUI a day – every day of the year!

As the holiday season fast approaches, I want to remind everyone to make a personal pledge to designate a sober driver for the evening, always wear your seatbelt and never provide alcohol to those under 21 – it’s the law!

Last, a special thanks to all law enforcement officers across the state for the work they accomplish and for ensuring our roads are safe to travel. Be it shopping for gifts, bringing home that special tree or just meeting up with friends and family – thank those heroes who keep us safe!

Outstanding DWI Team 2008

It is that time of year again!  MADD Nebraska is requesting nominations for outstanding work done, in our state, in the area of DWI, MIP, traffic mobilization, education on underage drinking, prosecution and probation in 2009.  All of these areas represent work that is essential to MADD’s mission to eliminate drunk driving. Just follow the link to get the nomination form: http://www.maddnebraska.org/lea/awards

Law enforcement is the front line to eliminating drunk driving on our roads across the state.   Arrests made, in relation to impaired driving, save lives.  Lives of our family members, neighbors and community friends.
 
Last year alone, there were more than 13,000 DWI arrests made statewide. That is equivalent to 36 arrests each and every day of the year – 36!
 
I would also like to take a moment and reflect on the families of law enforcement personnel and thank them for all that they give up – often law enforcement is called away from traditional family settings (birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, vacations) to testify, work late shifts, reconstruct accident scenes.  MADD knows and appreciates the hours law enforcement agencies commit to – to ensure our roads are safe to drive day or night.
 
I want to encourage law enforcement to utilize the MADD webpage designed for them: http://www.madd.org/Professionals/Law-Enforcement.aspx  This is a resource we are proud to share and also MADD would encourage all of you to view www.stopimpaireddriving.org provided by the National Transportation Safety Administration.
 
Make sure your agency, outstanding officer, elected official gets the recognition they deserve for the hard work accomplished, lives saved and a community that enjoys a safe drive home to be with family another day!
 
Nominations due to the State Office April 7, 2010.

Here at MADD we are preparing to add a Volunteer Coordinator position to offer support to our volunteers across the state.  We have had a tremendous response to our website and blog.  More than 2,000 hits in January alone, whew!

I am so pleased that we have the opportunity to hire an individual to help us build capacity, support our current volunteers and build a strong base across the state for our volunteers to carry out MADD’s Mission: to stop drunk driving, support victims impacted by this violent crime and prevent underage drinking.

The MADD Nebraska State Office is anxious to add a new member to our team.  I am fortunate to work with a team of dedicated and loyal employees.

From Court Monitoring to Victim Service to Underage Drinking Prevention: we all step up to the plate and do important work to meet our mission daily, ensure good use of the donor’s dollar and grow MADD Nebraska steady and strong.

Thanks to all who volunteer, financially support MADD Nebraska and work to make our state a safer place by working to reduce alcohol-related incidents. 

If you are interested in working for MADD follow the link: http://www.madd.org/About-Us/About-Us/Careers/Midwestern-Chapter-Job-Opportunities/Job-Opportinities/Coordinator-of-Volunteer-Resources.aspx

Simera Reynolds, M.Ed.

State Executive Director

On behalf of MADD and our many members, I want to take a moment to highlight the fantastic work that Cooper Racing has done in 2009.  Gary and Donna Cooper have been solid supporters/volunteers and activists for almost 10 years. 

Last year, like each prior Gary & Donna feature the MADD racecar project and their Race Against Drugs.  During 2009 Cooper Racing had a record 3,156 youth visit their booth and sign a drug free pledge.  Their total pledge count now stands at 11,562! Thanks to the communities for inviting the MADD Racecar to their community to highlight the dangers of underage drinking and drinking and driving.  More importantly a BIG thanks goes to the Cooper’s for making a psoitve impact in 2009 and for the past ten years by reaching our youth through a creative and positive approach.

The Copper Racing Team has an alcohol free pit during the racing season.

You can find out more about the MADD racecar project go to: www.gwcooperracing.com

All I know is that this year I am getting to the racetracks and I am grateful for the hard work and support Gary & Donna show MADD and our communities across the state – here’s to 2010! 

Fred Zwonechek, NOHS and First Lady Sally Ganem

 To read more about the Cooper racing see the article on page 10.         http://www.nppd.com/EnergyInsight/july_august08.pdf

Lincoln Police Department released their numbers for DUI arrests and they hit an all time high. http://www.journalstar.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/article_d172fa24-f986-11de-9cfa-001cc4c03286.html On behalf of MADD, we applaud LPD and the efforts of all the officers as they ensured that our roads were safe to travel. 

Thankfully the Lincoln Police Department is not unique and many agencies across the state have had record arrests.  There is a concerted effort by many highway safety advocates (including MADD) to support the Nebraska Highway Safety Plan http://www.dor.state.ne.us/highway-safety/docs/strat-hwy-sfty-plan.pdf .  You will want to look at Appendix II and see High Priority areas and it should come as no surprise that enforcing DUI laws ranks HIGH.  As Nebraskans we should care about the fact that:  one person dies every five days due to an alcohol-related crash in our state. A 100% preventable crime and thanks to enforcement we have seen lives saved! 

Nebraska ranked among the top for the least amount a fatalities due to alcohol-related crashes in 2008.  I am proud that we have 30 more individuals with families and friends still intact.

Checkpoints and heavy enforcement during high traffic times have worked to save lives  and not just in our state but in almost all 50 states.  It is an easy message “if you drink and drive you will get caught.”  http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2009-12-07-drunk-driving_N.htm 

Bringing me back to the Lincoln Police Department’s, Lancaster County Sheriff’s Department and  the Nebraska State Patrol holiday enforcement resulted in zero alcohol-related deaths in December in Lancaster County in 2009.  Thanks to all for your hard work and keeping us safe as we navigate our way to and from our everyday activities: work, kids, movies, family, errands, grandparents, and the grocery store.

MADD is on the Ribbon but Saving Lives is on Our Minds.

MADD Nebraska would like to take this opportunity to let you know that MADD is holding our 23rd annual “Tie One On For Safety” kick-off and  Governor Dave Heineman and First Lady Sally Ganem will be hosting an open house after the press conference, Tuesday, December 22nd at 9:30. 

It is such a treat to partner with First Lady Sally Ganem, MADD National Board member, and Governor Heineman as we all work to encourage the public to be mindful of the holiday season.  Next week we want to remind everyone to drive safe, sober and always wear your seatbelt throughout the holiday season and the entire year – 2010! 

A few tips for the season: 

Always Designate a Sober Driver 

Never serve alcohol to anyone under 21  

Allow plenty of time between trips as you travel  

Your seatbelt is your best defense against drunk driving 

Make a pledge to drive safe, sober and buckled up in 2010 – for your family! 

  

 

Tis the season.......Happy Holidays from MADD.

 

  

Boy oh boy have the phones here at the office been ringing like crazy.  I think in the ten years I have worked with MADD we have only canceled the victim impact panel twice.  MADD has a pretty tough line on this we are pretty much like the mailman “come rain or shine” but we are a traffic safety non-profit and we certainly do not want to put individuals at risk by driving in inclement weather.

 

 There is not a MADD victim impact panel tonight on Tuesday, December 8th, 2009.  The church closes when the school closes but even so MADD still would have canceled because we would not ask our volunteers to be out in this weather, our volunteer speakers or those that need to attend – asking individuals to travel in this weather would pose a public safety hazard and MADD is ALL for safe driving.

 

You can find the next MADD victim impact panel at our website: http://www.maddnebraska.org/vips/vip_schedule 

Drive safe, sober and buckled up!

 

To each a happy holiday, safe driving and always remember to wear your seatbelt, designate a sober driver and never serve to anyone under 21.