Windsor, Ontario – AUTO21, a federal program that supports researchers working on auto-related research and development projects at Canadian universities and institutes, has spoken in favour of a new report which provides recommendations on how to help improve the health of Canada’s children and youth, including endorsing mandatory use of booster seats for children.

The report, Reaching for the Top: A Report by the Advisor on Healthy Children and Youth, was anchored by Dr. Kellie Leitch, the federal government’s Advisor on Healthy Children and Youth, and Chief of Paediatric Surgery at Children’s Hospital in London, Ontario. A copy of the report is available at Health Canada’s website.

“Death rates of Canadian children and youth are escalating due to injuries that could be prevented,” said Dr. Anne Snowdon, Health, Safety and Injury Prevention Theme Coordinator for AUTO21. “This situation is not acceptable. The National Injury Prevention Strategy outlined in the report will help to keep Canadian children safer and reduce these needless deaths.”

The report proposes a focused and targeted approach to addressing injury prevention issues by building new models of collaboration and innovation, with a strong focus on knowledge-sharing across all disciplines and sectors. The National Injury Prevention Strategy recommends all provinces endorse the mandatory use of booster seats as a way to reduce injuries and deaths to children in motor vehicle collisions.

“AUTO21 is a federal automotive research initiative that partners the public and private sectors,” Dr. Snowdon said. “Its research methodology demonstrates that the collaborative and innovative approach outlined in Dr. Leitch’s report can result in safer conditions for Canadians. Our research in the area of children’s automotive safety has led to education strategies that support children’s safety and led to the development of a safer booster seat currently on market. This approach works.”

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