Car crashes are the leading cause of death and injury among teens in the Unites States, including among Latino teens. Distracted driving, especially cell phone use and texting while driving, is a major contributor to teen car crashes and deaths, and increasingly a danger for Latino youth. (NHTSA, CDC, Center for Automobile Medicine, NIH, National Center for Health Statistics) Preventing teen deaths from distracted driving will take many approaches: targeted laws, public policies and advocacy at the state level; effective prevention programs in communities; and national and local education campaign targeting youth, parents and communities.

What ASPIRA can do: As a national youth organization, ASPIRA has engaged in a host of initiatives to ensure the well-being of Latino youth, especially to ensure they have a quality education. However, we recognize that external factors impact the positive development of Latino youth and their education prospects – poverty; physical and mental health and wellness; and violence and overall safety. ASPIRA believes that these “external” factors must be addressed. Therefore, ASPIRA has embarked in a host of programs and campaigns over the past two decades to tackle these issues. Specifically, ASPIRA has developed national communications campaigns to inform youth and communities on some of the major issues they are facing, and on strategies and programs that can help resolve or at least ameliorate the negative effects these factors.

Over the years, with support from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the General Motors Foundation, and in collaboration with organizations such as the National Organization for Youth Safety (NOYS), ASPIRA has developed a Campaign on Traffic Safety because of the disproportionate impact car crashes have on Latino teens in our communities, which are the fastest growing in the country. This campaign has included: seat-belt use, child car seats, pedestrian safety, and impaired driving. The Campaign to Prevent Distracted Driving Among Latino Youth has been a long-standing part of this campaign, and now has become more important than ever, especially because of the explosion in the use of electronic devices among Latino youth in recent years, and the potential for distracted driving (cell-phone use, texting while driving) and car crashes and death as a result of distracted driving.

ASPIRA has divided its Campaign to Prevent Distracting Driving Among Latino Youth into the following components:

  • Research and Data: To inform communities and policy-makers on the research and data on the impact of distracted driving, and potential causes of distracted driving;
  • Policy Options: Laws, policies and practices adopted by states and local jurisdictions to address distracted driving and advocacy by organizations, parents and communities to adopt such laws and policies;
  • Successful Program and Practices: Programs and practices that have proven effective in reducing teen distracted driving; and
  • Education Campaign: Messages and campaigns (e.g., media, social media, local community events) that effectively reach teens, parents, policy-makers and communities on distracted driving.
  • Smartphone Use and Texting While Driving: What Legislators andPolicymakers Should Know
  • Para más información, comuníquese con: Hilda Crespo

This campaign is made possible through a generous contribution by:  
GM Foundation

 The Campaign to Prevent Distracting Driving Among Latino Youth has developed the following resources: