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April 26, 2010

Superintendents and Principals, Winnipeg Funded and Non-Funded Independent Schools:

As we approach the summer, when many families will be travelling more frequently and for greater
distances by car, the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority and Manitoba Public Insurance are launching a
booster seat promotional campaign in Winnipeg to remind parents of the importance of always buckling
up properly. We would like to invite schools to participate in getting this important message out by
circulating the attached information sheet to parents.

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for elementary school-aged children. Of all motor
vehicle occupants, children 4-8 years of age are least likely to be properly restrained in the car, with only
20% of children in this age group using a booster seat. A recent Winnipeg Children’s Hospital study
showed that 50% of children hospitalized with spinal cord injuries were injured in motor vehicle
collisions, and that 90% were unrestrained or improperly restrained (e.g. young child in an adult seat
belt). Booster seats can prevent these devastating injuries and deaths.

In May 2010 we will be launching booster seat promotion activities in Winnipeg, including an interactive
display at the annual Teddy Bears Picnic where children will be weighed and measured to see if they
need a booster seat, information for families distributed through Winnipeg pediatric clinics and public
health services, retail coupons, and media communications. While booster seats are now available for as
low as $30 in retail stores we recognize that this is still more than some families can afford. A small
number of free booster seats will be available to those families who are identified by their pediatrician,
public health nurse, home visitor, or school principal as needing one. If you know of a family who should
be using a booster seat and truly cannot afford one, please send a letter on their behalf to IMPACT at
NA335–700 McDermot Avenue, Winnipeg, R3E 0T2 (FAX 787-2070).

If you would like to distribute additional resources to families in your school, we recommend “Kids that
Click, Booster Seats and Seat Belts”, an excellent pamphlet for parents. To order free copies contact Safe
Kids Canada at 1-888-SAFE-TIP (723-3847).

For more information regarding the booster seat campaign, contact the Winnipeg Regional Health
Authority Injury Prevention Program, IMPACT, at 787-1873. For information about booster seats and
road safety, call Manitoba Public Insurance at 985-7199.

Thank you for your support and for circulating the attached information sheet to families in your school.

Sincerely,



(Name)                                                 (Name)
(Title)                                                (Title)
Winnipeg Regional Health Authority                     Manitoba Public Insurance

								
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