Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) unveiled their Active People, Healthy NationSM initiative on Capitol Hill focused on improving America’s health through physical activity. But access to safe and reliable active transportation options is critically important to achieving their goals, and many of our roads remain unsafe and inaccessible to people outside of a vehicle. A new off-year update to Dangerous by Design—also released today—shows that the number of people struck and killed or seriously injured while walking, biking, or rolling continues to increase, and that most states are asleep at the wheel.
Yesterday, the U.S. Surgeon General launched a new nationwide Call to Action to help Americans be healthier by making walking and physical activity a bigger part of their daily lives.
The event recognized physical activity as one of the nation’s highest health priorities. And as Dr. Murthy explained yesterday, building communities where it is safe and convenient to walk, bike, or wheelchair roll is part of the solution.
Congress is about to have a critical opportunity to take action on this issue. Legislators are currently working on a multiyear federal transportation bill which will shape communities and transportation programs for years to come. As representatives negotiate the bill in the coming weeks, will they prioritize walkable communities?
Tell your Representative to listen to the Surgeon General: Make walkable communities a priority in the next federal transportation bill.
The Surgeon General of the United States will kick off a new nationwide Call to Action later this morning, aiming to help Americans lead healthier lives—by making walking and physical activity built-in features of more of our neighborhoods.
Over the past decade, scores of research has shown the correlation between physical inactivity and sprawl development. Today, 10 percent of the preventable deaths in America are related to physical inactivity and its related diseases, including obesity, heart disease, and diabetes—and communities without safe places to walk are part of the problem. Smart Growth America’s 2003 report Measuring the Health Effects of Sprawl was one of the first to examine this issue. Today, the Surgeon General is making it a national health priority.