|Date added||June 17, 2014|
|Category||2014 CMRSC XXIV Vancouver|
|Tags||Policy and Practice, Session 1B|
|Stream/Volet||Policy and Practice|
Slidedeck Presentation Only (no paper submitted)
In Nova Scotia motor vehicle collisions (MVCs) are a leading cause of injury related death and hospitalizations. MVCs are a preventable public health issue. In particular, youth are at a high risk of MVC injury and death and require specific interventions and policies to prevent injury and death. Knowing this, Nova Scotia’s Road Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC) and Nova Scotia Road Safety Youth Committee (NSRSYC) have sought to engage youth in meaningful ways to improve road safety and create healthier communities. The committees are multidisciplinary and represent a number of organizations across the injury prevention, health promotion, and road safety spectrums. Our Slide Deck Presentation submission fits the theme of this conference, because it is designed to share promising strategies across disciplines to improve youth road safety.
Over the past year (September -November 2012 and October 2013) the Committees have engaged youth in non-traditional ways, with the purpose to gain youth perspectives on risky road behaviours while creating a communication norm between the government and youth. As youth engagement is an evolving method we worked with experts in the field and relied on evidence that stated effective engagement requires youth led and interactive activities. 
Using a multidisciplinary approach we partnered with youth engagement, injury prevention, and health promotion experts, and the enforcement community. Two prototypes were developed based on the evidence that interactive methods are more effective with youth. The first prototype was in a classroom of approximately 30 students (16-18) and consisted of five sessions. The second prototype was a youth camp over three days with 14 youth (13-18). As a safety initiative, our engagement methods show promise in gaining an understanding of youth perspectives on road safety. Key objectives included:
- developing recommendations for future policy decisions,
- creating partnerships between youth and the government, and
- facilitating partnerships amongst youth and community road safety organizations,
A key learning gained from the youth engagement events is that youth want to be engaged and are interested in road safety. Also, we have identified the importance of involving youth from previous sessions into future ones. Continuing to involve youth in other events creates leadership opportunities for youth as well as enables us to continue to build capacity to move forward with other events.
The information gained from these prototypes will inform future engagement activities and shape how we will include youth in the development and implementation of future legislation, policy, and programs. The research speaks a lot to the importance of engaging youth and the positive effects it has on policy and community development. RSAC and the NSRSYC have learned from these prototypes and see presenting at the Safer Roads; Healthier Communities 24th Canadian Multidisciplinary Road Safety Conference as an opportunity to share with others practical and meaningful methods to youth engagement as a means to create healthier and safer communities. Youth are interested in participating, communicating, creating relationships with the government and key stakeholders to address the issues of road safety; this is a resource that must be utilized. Ginwright, S., & James, T. (2002). From assets to agents of change: Social justice, organizing, and youth development. New Directions for Youth Development, 2002(96), 27-46. Retrieved from http://login.ezproxy.library.ualberta.ca/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=11773589&site=eds-live&scope=site
Zeldin, S., McDaniel, A., Topitzes, D. & Calvert M. (2000). Youth in decision-making: A study on the impacts of youth on adults and organizations. The Innovation Center for Community and Youth Development. University of Wisconsin. Retrieved from http://www.theinnovationcenter.org/files/Youth_in_Decision_Making_Brochure.pdf
Zeldin, S. (2004). Youth as agents of adult and community development: Mapping the processes and outcomes of youth engaged in organizational governance. Applied Developmental Science. (2), 75-90. Retrieved from http://ehis.ebscohost.com/eds/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=6bbbbdf7-39a8-4813-89e6-9d40cc5ee324%40sessionmgr115&vid=15&hid=115
Zeldin, S. & Petrokubi, J. (2008). Youth-adult partnership: Impacting individuals and communities. Prevention Researcher. 15(2), 16-20. Retrieved from http://ehis.ebscohost.com/eds/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=6bbbbdf7-39a8-4813-89e6-9d40cc5ee324%40sessionmgr115&vid=10&hid=15