Friday, March 25, 2011

National Youth Violence Prevention Week: March 21st-25th

There’s been a lot of talk recently about youth violence with everything from school and cyber bulling to suicides and dating violence. And for good reason. Youth violence is the second leading cause of death for young people aged 10 to 24 and is the leading cause of death in urban areas. And it all could be preventable.

In fact according to a 2007 American Journal of Preventive Medicine Article communities play a critical role in the prevention of youth violence and can work with schools to reduce violence by 15 percent in as little as six months through universal school-based violence prevention efforts. This week, we recognize National Youth Violence Prevention Week. The week aims to raise awareness to educators, students, teachers, school administrators, counselors, school resource officers, school staff, parents and the public on effective ways to prevent or reduce youth violence. Join countless public health advocates and get involved. Check out available resources here.

We encourage you to continue the conversation in early April and celebrate National Public Health Week with us.

The National Public Health Week campaign echoes the week’s message of violence prevention in all aspects of the community by promoting actions big and small including:
  • working with school leaders to implement school violence and bullying programs.
  • calling the police or local child protective services if you suspect an older adult has been abused or a child neglected.
  • work with community leaders to establish a community safety task force.
  • developing a suicide prevention program that encourages community members to inquire and respond to potential suicide situations.

To learn more about actions you can take to help prevent youth violence and raise awareness of injury and violence prevention visit the National Public Health Week website at

Friday, March 18, 2011

Become a NPHW Partner !

Join APHA in observing National Public Health Week 2011, Safety is No Accident: Live Injury-Free, the first full week of April as a national, state or local partner. We can all make a difference and work as a unified voice speaking on behalf of this important public health issue. Becoming a partner is free, simple and shows your commitment to an injury-free nation. Partners help APHA disseminate messages and materials at the state and local level, and to the general public.

Want to learn more about how you can become involved in this year’s campaign? View our partner’s webinar. If you’re a student or campus professor, you can also view the student’s webinar to find out more about activities related to students and APHA’s Student Assembly as they gear up to celebrate the second annual National Public Health Week Student Day.

And whether you’re a student or partner, be sure to download this year’s Partner Toolkit. The easy-to-use guide is filled with planning materials and tips including:

· Injury and Violence prevention talking points
· Injury and Violence prevention fact sheets
· Sample media outreach materials
· Suggested community events including quick how to’s
· Legislative information
· Sample Proclamation
· Sample Op-ed
· Sample LTE
· Media toolkit
· Sample social media materials

Let everyone know how you plan to celebrate National Public Health Week! Submit your NPHW events to the online calendar and let the public and media know what is happening during NPHW in communities across the country.

Friday, March 11, 2011

New KID report shows progress on children’s product safety; highlights importance of public database

Today's guest blog is by Kids in Danger (KID). KID is a nonprofit dedicated to protecting children by improving children's product safety.

KID has released a new resource for consumers, Moving towards Safety, a report on 2010 recalls and CPSC actions that impact safety. The report shows that while the number of recalls and the number of children hurt and killed by unsafe products is cause for concern, there were marked improvements to product safety oversight in 2010 as a result of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) and other CPSC actions.

Children’s products still recalled frequently: There was a recall for children’s products roughly every two days in 2010. In total, 160 recalls accounted for over 44 million individual toys, cribs, sweatshirts, strollers and more. That’s an increase of twelve percent from 2009 in recalls and 110% in units recalled. Download the full report (pdf) to review the rest of the findings.

Steps in the right direction: At first glance these numbers seem to indicate that the state of children’s product safety had worsened in the last year. However, through CPSIA and CPSC actions, we’ve seen heartening improvements to product safety oversight in 2010:

  • CPSC and FDA issued a warning on sleep positioners that promoted most retailers to stop selling these unnecessary and dangerous products.
  • CPSC issued alerts on the safe use of baby slings.

KID believes that many of these actions will not only reduce recalls in the future, but make it more likely recalled products will be retrieved from use.

Let there be light: The mounting injuries and deaths associated with unsafe children’s products confirm that recall information is still not effectively reaching families and caregivers. To this point, the public has had virtually no access to injury and incident reports submitted to CPSC. The way it works, CPSC has to get manufacturers to agree to a voluntary recall, a process that takes time, and in the interim caregivers continue to unknowingly use products that pose dangerous hazards to children. We see the evidence of this from the report: For nursery products, the category of children’s products with the highest number of recalls, there were 108 reports of injury prior to recalls. One toy, the Step2 Push Buggy, had 28 individual reports of injuries before the recall. And many of the deaths had reports of injury or incidents of product failure before the deaths.

As required through CPSIA, CPSC is preparing to launch a publicly accessibly database that will help tremendously in this area. Set to go live on March 11th, this database will provide consumers with a place to report injury and safety information, and provide consumers, researchers and the CPSC with important information on injury trends and emerging hazards. The new database will allow consumers to access reports about unsafe products in a timely manner, so that preventable injuries can be avoided.

However, U.S. House of Representatives has adopted an amendment to a spending bill that defunds the CPSC database. If accepted in the Senate version of the funding bill, this will once again drop the veil of silence over injury reports collected from consumers. KID urges consumers to contact your senators and tell them to oppose these attempts to hijack safety and ask them to put the safety of our children first.

How to protect your children: KID recommends that parents check the products used with their children at and sign up for safety updates at In addition, parents should report problems with a product both to the manufacturer and to CPSC at the new database,, and urge elected representatives to protect CPSIA’s provisions and make children’s product safety a priority.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Tweet With Us

Promote NPHW events in your community and share information about living injury-free using social media. Social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube & Flickr, can help take your organizations NPHW efforts to the next level. Plus each of these easy to use websites can help you reach different audiences. Hundreds of people are just a click of the mouse away!

How about a few Twitter tricks of the trade to help you spread the message.

  • Consistency: Tweet multiple times per day leading up to NPHW. This will engage your audience & build up interest and anticipation for National Public Health Week
  • Mix Content: You can tweet facts, share websites of reliable resources (eg: , ), post quizzes and events in your neighborhood.
  • Interaction: Ask questions, allow for comments and engage your followers in a dialogue. Ask your followers to share their safety tips, and what they plan to do improve safety
  • Use hash tag: With every tweet, add #NPHW. This will make it easier for others to find your organization, learn about your events and the information you share.
  • Theme: Each day of this year’s NPHW 2011 has a particular theme. You can share facts resources and other info according to this year’s theme. Here are some sample tweets for each day of NPHW.
Monday (Safety at Home):
  • Four out of five US fire deaths were residential fires in 2008. Test your smoke detector today. Learn more at #NPHW
Tuesday (Safety at Work):
  • On average, 15 workers die each day from traumatic injuries. Make sure your work environment is safe. Learn more at #NPHW
Wednesday (Safety at Play):
  • Always wear a helmet. Wearing one reduces the risk of head injury by 85%. Learn more at #NPHW
Thursday (Safety on the Move):
  • In ‘08 nearly 6,000 people died in crashes involving a distracted driver. Don’t text or call while driving. Learn more at #NPHW
Friday (Safety in Your Community):
  • Keep all firearms locked and unloaded and store ammunition in a separate location to ensure safety. Learn more at #NPHW

Plus, be sure to chat with us on Monday, April 4, at 1pm ET for our first-ever live online Twitter chat about safety and injury prevention as part of NPHW. Become part of the discussion by simply including #NPHW in your tweet. Post comments, asks questions, share ideas – all are welcome to join!Happy Tweeting!