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Category: Announcement

Eight people killed while walking in August.

Eight people killed while walking in August.

In August, drivers have hit and killed at least 8 people walking in Massachusetts, more than in any other month in 2020. We don’t know all the details of the crashes yet, and honestly we may never know. 

What we do know is that these deaths were preventable. As an organization, WalkBoston continues to push for fundamental changes in our transportation system that work to eliminate pedestrian deaths and ensure safe mobility for all. We will look at these crash locations and see if there is a missing crosswalk or extra wide lanes that may have contributed to these crashes.  And if so, we’ll advocate for road design changes to slow traffic down and help prevent tragedies from happening again. But, our efforts will not bring these eight people back. 

Date of crashCommunityTimeNameAge
August 2, 2020Fall River9:20 AMDolores McHenry81
August 3, 2020Webster7:00 AMRichard Tetreault87
August 9, 2020Hopkinton3:30 PMLaurie Cain65
August 11, 2020Brockton8:52 PMMichelle Shelley Maxwell55
August 13, 2020Concord10:30 AMJennifer Bemis67
August 15, 2020Quincy11:20 AM(unknown, Canton man)68
August 15, 2020Boston – Dorchester (Peabody Sq)11:45 PMQualan Joseph Powell33
August 17, 2020Brockton11:50 PMJoseph Driscoll62

Sources: WalkBoston crash tracker | MassDOT Crash Portal

We need to make sure to all work together to make our roads safer for people to walk, bike and roll, and save other families from the pain of losing a loved one. If you live in one of these communities and want resources, contact us at info@walkboston.org

Make the case for safer streets in Boston today

Make the case for safer streets in Boston today

On Thursday, August 20th at 1pm, the Boston City Council will hold a hearing about plans for improving streets in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Will you take five minutes today to ask Boston to act with the urgency this crisis demands?

If you live in Boston, contact your city councilor: Ask that they attend this hearing and tell them you support these recommendations for improving Boston’s “Healthy Streets” plan. (Not sure what to say? We’ve included some sample text below.) It’s critical that councilors understand why action is needed to support essential workers and essential trips. If you have a personal story about either topic — maybe you’re currently riding the bus to work, or delivering food or medicine by bike — please share it with the council!

The City Council will meet at 1 p.m Thursday, so get your feedback in before then! You can watch the hearing live here. 

The steps Boston has taken to date are insufficient to meet this historic moment. With your support, we can get the city to not only commit to more short-term changes, but to making these long-overdue fixes permanent, too.

SAMPLE SCRIPT

Dear [councilor],

I’m writing to express my hopes for the next phase of Boston’s “Healthy Streets” plan for adapting streets in response to COVID-19. While I appreciate the steps Boston has taken to date, I am concerned about their focus and scope.

[Share your personal story about transportation and COVID]

I support recommendations made by the Boston Cyclists Union, MassBike, LivableStreets Alliance and WalkBoston for expanding and improving upon this initial effort. In particular, I would like this next phase of “Healthy Streets” to include:

  • Clear criteria for how projects are being prioritized
  • A greater emphasis on equity, addressing both systemic underinvestment and the pandemic’s disproportionate impact on low-income neighborhoods and communities of color
  • A plan for keeping and maintaining improvements through the winter
  • A commitment to making short-term improvements permanent and/or collecting data from pilots to advance priority projects

Thank you,

[Your name]
[Address]

Age-Friendly Walking in your community: WalkBoston guidance for taking action

Age-Friendly Walking in your community: WalkBoston guidance for taking action

Age-Friendly Walking is a framework for planning and building cities and towns that are walkable for people of all ages. Walkability is key to ensuring that older adults can age in community, access goods and services, and maintain physical, mental, and social health.

To guide Age-Friendly Walking efforts for communities across Massachusetts, WalkBoston has developed a list of 8 policy actions and 8 infrastructure improvements that will help make communities more walkable. We hope these guidance documents can assist residents and municipal staff to take actions that will create accessible sidewalks and streets that are safe and welcoming for people of all ages.

If you would like to learn more about how WalkBoston can support Age-Friendly Walking in your community please email us at agefriendly@walkboston.org

These guidance documents can be downloaded here:
8 Age-Friendly Policy Actions
8 Age-Friendly Infrastructure Improvements

‘Safe driving during COVID-19’ PSA graphics

‘Safe driving during COVID-19’ PSA graphics

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, lower traffic volumes have led to dangerous driving speeds in communities across the Commonwealth. High driving speeds contributed to a doubled roadway fatality rate in the month of April in Massachusetts. Driver speeding affects all road users by making walking and rolling conditions unsafe and uncomfortable.

With the safer-at-home advisory still in place, increased numbers of people are walking, rolling, and running in their communities. To make roadways safe for all users, drivers must take responsibility to not exceed the posted speed limit and to yield to walkers and rollers who are using street space to maintain physical distance in areas with narrow sidewalks.

To support communities who are seeing dangerously high traffic speeds and unsafe driving behavior, WalkBoston partnered with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health Mass in Motion (MiM) and MORE Advertising to develop a social media campaign that MiM coordinators can use to raise awareness about safer pandemic driving behavior.

To broaden the reach of this important message, we invite all communities and individuals to use these graphics on your social media or other town communication platforms.

These graphics are set up for Facebook. Consider adding the following language as a comment to your social media post:

  • Keep our roads safe for everyone!
  • Safe driving is still important. Keep our roads safe for all.

Please consider every street a shared street and stay safe!

4 PSA graphic options (click for full size, and then right click to “save image as”):

 

Come join our fundraising and communications team! We’re hiring!

Come join our fundraising and communications team! We’re hiring!

The Development Director will help develop and implement a comprehensive fundraising strategy for WalkBoston with the help of Board members and staff.  Reporting to the Executive Director, the Development Director will build on and reinforce individual and corporate fundraising programs, and assist in developing fundraising strategies for virtual and live WalkBoston events.

We are looking for someone who excels at writing campaign content and can help grow our donor base beyond our current audience. Two upcoming scheduled events provide immediate opportunities to showcase fundraising campaign skills including WalkBoston’s first virtual Annual Meeting celebrating our 30th anniversary, and our first 5K/1-mile Run/Walk along the Charles River.

The Development Director would also be part of the Staff and Board examination of WalkBoston’s policies, approach and strategic plan to elevate racial equity as an explicit, intentional part of WalkBoston’s mission.

Interested applicants possessing the above experience and skills are encouraged to apply by sending a resume and cover letter with salary expectations to jobs@walkboston.org by July 17.

Responsibilities:

Communications & Development Administration

  • Lead the design, development, and production of annual appeals, event collateral, and other communications materials in collaboration with graphic designer.
  • Develop digital campaign strategies and manage virtual events.
  • Identify and research new prospects.
  • Manage and maintain the Salesforce database.
  • Provide administrative and operational support to Executive Director and Board members for ongoing relationships and solicitation strategies.
  • Lead and oversee the Board Development Committee.
  • Manage fundraising administrative tasks including gift processing and donor acknowledgements.

Corporate & Individual Giving

  • Identify and cultivate relationships with potential corporate and foundation funders.
  • Steward existing relationships with corporate, foundation, and individuals donors.
  • Develop and execute a major donor strategy in partnership with the Executive Director and the Board Development Committee.

 Event Support & Management

  • Support the execution of at least one fundraising event per year.
  • Help to identify, solicit, and steward corporate sponsorship for events and for maximizing individual sponsorship and ticket purchases.
  • Support the planning of WalkBoston’s Annual Meeting.

Grant-writing

  • Manage all aspects of the grant research, writing, and reporting process.
  • Identify potential grant opportunities and coordinate strategy.
  • Draft and edit grant applications and reports.
  • Maintain calendar of grant proposal and reporting deadlines.

Qualifications:

  • College degree with at least five years of professional development experience, preferably at a nonprofit organization.
  • Commitment to WalkBoston’s mission to create more walkable communities across the state.
  • Superior communication skills. Ability to write and speak clearly and persuasively in diverse settings to articulate the impacts of WalkBoston’s work and the benefits of walkable communities.
  • Knowledge of local giving/fundraising landscape preferred.
  • Advanced working knowledge of Salesforce or similar fundraising database.
  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively with WalkBoston staff, board of directors, donors, program participants and volunteers
  • Self-starter, entrepreneurial, flexible, and well organized

Benefits:

  • Full-time position (37.5 hours/week)
  • Annual salary range: $55,000 – $60,000 based on prior work experience
  • Standard benefits include: holiday compensation, paid time off, and flexible scheduling including possible partial remote work option

Interested applicants possessing the above experience and skills are encouraged to apply by sending a resume and cover letter with salary expectations to jobs@walkboston.org by July 17.

WalkBoston is an Equal Opportunity Employer.