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Speed Cameras Save Lives

10:33 AM EDT on July 6, 2018

Kids and parents should be able to walk to school without speeding drivers jeopardizing their lives. Photo: Clarence Eckerson

Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza is the head of the Department of Education and NYC Public Schools.

School’s out for the summer, but that doesn’t mean our work stops. In fact, some of our most important work happens during the summer months -- professional development for staff and enrichment programs for students ensure that, come September, we’re ready to hit the ground running on the first day of school.

Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza. Photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office
Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza. Photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office

We need the State Senate to do their part over the summer to ensure students can safely travel to and from school when the next school year starts. With the failure to reauthorize and expand the City’s School Speed Zone Camera program, it’s lights out on our cameras on July 25 unless they return to Albany to take action.

We’re lucky to work with the best safety team in the world, the NYPD, and I feel confident they are keeping our kids safe inside our buildings. But what about when they’re crossing the street to get to school or walking down the street when they leave school? While NYPD has increased their enforcement against dangerous drivers, the problem is too big for them to address alone.

There is a common sense solution to this problem -- speed cameras. They are a proven tool that make drivers more responsible and keep our school zones safer. It’s that simple -- speed cameras keep our students safe. And their ability to safely travel to and from school is being threatened.

Mayor de Blasio has led the way on pedestrian safety. Governor Cuomo supports the extension and expansion of the speed cameras. And our Assembly has passed a bill in support of it. Now it is up to the Senate to get us to the finish line. Without passing a bill, the cameras already in place at 140 schools will be turned off soon, and the plan to place cameras on the most dangerous streets and in an additional 150 school speed zones will be halted.

Our families shouldn’t have to spend the summer worrying about a safety hazard that may be waiting for their children in the fall. They should be spending quality time together, having fun exploring the city and continuing to learn.

This is a straightforward issue with a clear solution. It’s a matter of life and death. 

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