Summer  2014 
In This Issue
Project Gearshift shifting into its second year with State Farm
Is It Worth It? video airing throughout NASCAR season
Senior Fall Prevention Conference
Canadian Multidisciplinary Road Safety conference
Innovations in Urban Traffic Safety
Facilitators and barriers to enacting injury prevention in Canada
Concussion awareness
Parachute's Safe Kids Week
Safe and Sure new car seat installation program
Parachute's Brain Day
Guess what's on the Horizon at Parachute?
New Board Members
Profile on Safe Communities
Congrats BC Injury Research and Prevention Unit

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Message from the President
Stop the Clock 
From distracted driving, to concussions, safe swimming, and preventing seniors from falling, we are all attracting attention, sharing knowledge, and raising awareness of preventable injury in Canada. You will see in this issue there is a lot underway across the country. 

On June 2, Parachute launched a public awareness campaign to Stop the Clock on preventable injuries. Our immediate goal is to raise awareness among Canadians of the facts around preventable injuries including the most staggering one: 1 child dies every 9 hours from a preventable injury. Our ultimate goal? To create an injury-free Canada. 


How can you help?

Please watch and share our 1-minute video and follow us Facebook and Twitter to keep the conversation going.


Thanks to all our partners, volunteers, sponsors and funders who make this work possible.


Wishing everyone a long, happy, injury free summer.


Louise Logan, BA JD 

President & CEO

Staying Safe on the Road


In Canada, distracted driving contributes to more serious injuries than impaired driving or speeding.  Driver distraction is a factor in between 15% and 19% of fatal collisions involving teen drivers. 

Students at Nepean High School pose for a "selfie" with Mrs. Laureen Harper, Transport Minister Lisa Raitt, Louise Logan and Kathryn Field.
On June 2, 2014, Mrs. Laureen Harper and the Hon. Lisa Raitt, Minister of Transport, joined Parachute in urging 500 seniors students at Nepean High School to stop texting while driving.  The event marked the launch of Parachute's public awareness campaign to #practicesafetext.


Kathryn Field, whose teenage son Josh passed away five years ago as a result of distracted driving, shared her family's tragic story.  Students across Canada were encouraged to join Parachute's national campaign to #practicesafetext. 




Ottawa Senators Kyle Turris shows us how to #PracticeSafeText
"Parents want to know that their children are safe when they are on the road," said Minister Raitt. "Texting and driving puts us all at risk, and our Government is proud to be working with leading organizations like Parachute, who continue to ensure our young drivers remain focused and safe on our roads."


To learn more about this new public awareness campaign, check out the photos and watch the video


Thank you to all those who are helping make this campaign a success.


Project Gearshift shifting into its second year with State Farm 

In Canada, youth aged 16 - 24 make up 13% of the licensed population, but represent approximately 24% of fatalities on the road.


In an effort to reduce motor-vehicle related injuries and fatalities among teen drivers, Parachute and State Farm launched the second year of Project Gearshift in May. Project Gearshift is a national initiative designed to educate teens about distracted, aggressive and impaired driving.  A key focus of the program is raising awareness and seeking solutions to prevent unnecessary teen deaths on the road through community and youth engagement.  Activities take place over the next few months, leading up to National Teen Driver Safety Week in October 19 - 25, 2014.


"What makes teen driver fatalities so tragic is that the vast majority of them are completely preventable," says John Bordignon, Media Relations, State Farm Canada. "Two of our core philosophies are education and safety awareness, by supporting the work Parachute is doing to formally establish a National Teen Driver Safety Week in Canada we are addressing these values and helping to save the lives of teens across the country".


The interactive program is multifaceted, with activities and resources for youth, their parents, as well as the greater community. Project Gearshift works with teen ambassadors, industry task force members and community organizations to unite Canada in this important cause.  For more information, or to access resources, please visit Project Gearshift.


Is It Worth It? video airing throughout NASCAR season

Parachute is excited to announce the Canadian launch of one of the top vide os from the national student multi-media competition.  Originally created by Northern Secondary student Tamar Bresge, the video is airing now on TSN until October 15th during the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series season.  Thanks to Scott Steckly, NASCAR Canadian Tire Series driver and Is It Worth It? judge, who arranged to have the video televised on TSN!

Talking Prevention

Senior Fall Prevention Conference 

"If we reduce fall-related hospitalizations over the next year by 5% we can save over 80 million dollars and reduce unnecessary pain and suffering for thousands of seniors."  This sound advice is from Dr. Vicky Scott at the second National Fall Prevention Conference that took place on May 27-28 in Toronto.


Watch Your Step! was attended by 400 participants including researchers, practitioners and policy makers in the field of seniors' health and injury prevention. They came together from across the country and around the world to share research excellence, clinical advances and policy innovations in fall and injury prevention among seniors. 


Presented in partnership with the Falls and Mobility Network, the sold-out conference was co-hosted by the Ontario Injury Prevention Resource Centre located at Parachute, BCIRPU, and the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute.  It included more than 60 concurrent sessions that addressed the themes of exercise, environmental modifications, injury prevention equipment, risk assessment, fall prevention in the community, hospital and residential care settings, as well as education and training.


Watch Your Step! included keynote presenters Dr. Marla Shapiro, Primary Care Physician and Canada AM's Health and Medical Expert, Dr. Dean Fixsen, Senior Scientist at University of North Caroline at Chapel Hill, Dr. Stephen Robinovitch, Professor, Simon Fraser University Injury Prevention and Mobility Laboratory for Injury Prevention in Seniors, and Dr. Stephen Lord, Senior Principal Research Fellow at Neuroscience Research Australia in Sydney.  Together, they discussed the importance of teamwork, research advances, new technological solutions and the importance of implementation science.


The closing keynote panel discussion, What in the World is Next for Fall Prevention, brought together experts from across the globe to discuss the future of this growing and important field, and included Dr. Judy Stevens from the US, Dr. Fabio Feldman from Canada, Dr. Dawn Skelton from the UK and Dr. Stephen Lord.


Watch Your Step! was made possible through the generous support of many partners including Shoppers Home Health Care, Osteoporosis Canada, Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation, Ontario Falls Prevention Community of Practice, Public Health Ontario, Canadian Red Cross, Philips Lifeline, Accreditation Canada, Seniors for Seniors and VON Canada.  Conference presentations can be viewed at Watch Your Step.


Thank you to the conference organizers and all the attendees for making this such a successful conference!

Canadian Multidisciplinary Road Safety Conference
Safer Roads: Healthier Communities 

From June 1 - 4, the Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals and the BCIRPU hosted the 24th Canadian Multidisciplinary Road Safety Conference. The theme was Safer Roads: Healthier Communities to emphasize that traffic injuries and deaths are a major public health problem in Canada.


The conference brought together a multi-disciplinary group of delegates including health professionals, engineers, government officials, crash reconstructionists, insurers, researchers, enforcement, and others.  The program focused on the importance of sharing strategies across disciplines to improve the safety of our roads thus lowering traffic injuries and deaths.  


Dr. Richard Stanwick, medical officer of health for Island Health in BC, gave an entertaining and informative keynote presentation to open the conference.  On the second day of the conference Dr. Bella Dinh-Zarr, FIA Foundation for the Automobile & Society, provided perspective on international activities related to the creation of the Sustainable Development Goals 2015 (to replace the Millennium Development Goals). She encouraged the delegates to show support for the inclusion of road safety in these goals by adding their vote to myworld2015.orgThe conference wrapped up with an engaging panel presentation on the future of the automated vehicle. 


Innovations in Urban Traffic Safety

Parachute recently attended the 6th Annual International Traffic Safety Conference in Edmonton which focused on Innovation in Urban Traffic Safety. Keynote presentations included Luis Alicia Anduago, Dr. James Talbot, Dr. Ian Johnson and Dr. David Redekopp.  With over 300 Canadian and international attendees the conference was a great opportunity for both learning and networking. 


Facilitators and Barriers to Enacting Injury Prevention in Canada 

Participants needed for key informant survey 


Dr. Alison Macpherson is a Professor at York University and an experienced injury prevention researcher. In 2012, Dr. Macpherson received a 5-year Applied Chair in Reproductive, Child & Youth Health Services & Policy from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), for her project "Bridging the gaps between evidence, policy and injury prevention."


One of the objectives of this chair was to develop evidence around the facilitators and barriers to enacting injury prevention policy in Canada. To meet this objective, a key informant survey will be conducted of identified policy-makers and injury prevention advocates in each of the provinces and territories. The key informant survey will include a series of questions related to specific injury issues, regarding factors that have previously been shown to promote or impede health policy.


The survey will be online, and participants will be asked if they would also like to participate in a subsequent interview in order to gather richer information regarding specific issues identified from the online surveys.


One of the first steps in conducting this project is to develop an inclusive list of policy-makers and advocates to participate in the survey. Any suggestions of individuals who may be appropriate for this survey would be greatly appreciated.


If you, or someone you know, might be interested in participating in the survey, please contact Linda Rothman at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Keeping Kids Safe

Concussion awareness 

Just announced this week, the first comprehensive pediatric concussion guidelines have been released by the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) together with the Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation(ONF).


Up until now, while there have been recommendations and policies on concussion available, they tended to focus on sports-related injury and not children and youth.  The new comprehensive guidelines are a reliable resource for everyone affected by pediatric concussion: from children and their families, to health care providers, and to schools and recreational organizations.


The pediatric guidelines were initiated by the ONF, managed by CHEO, and developed by an expert panel including over 30 members across Canada and the United States led by Dr. Roger Zemek.


The new guidelines provide healthcare providers with evidence-based recommendations to standardize the diagnoses and management of concussion in children aged 5 to 18 years old, from the initial assessment through to the period of recovery (which might last months).  They also standardize children's reintegration into school and social activities. Parachute's Concussions Guidelines for Parents and Caregivers are also included in the report.


The Guidelines for Pediatric Concussion are free and available at:

Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation and Concussions Ontario

Parachute's Safe Kids Week

Parachute's Safe Kids Week was a splashing good time!


Now in its 19th year, Parachute's Safe Kids Week is an annual public awareness campaign designed to raise awareness about the frequency and severity of preventable childhood injuries.  The national campaign, June 7 - 14, held in communities across Canada, included a national launch in Victoria, BC, where Island Health hosted a dunk tank for local celebrities to get wet in the name of water safety. 


More than 570 children drowned in Canada in the past 10 years, and drowning is the second leading cause of injury related deaths for Canadian children. Parachute and our community partners encouraged Canadians to become aware of the importance of water safety in order to prevent drowning and water-related injuries this summer. 


A major component of this year's campaign was a partnership with Preventable to bring the "Have a Word With Yourself" water safety towel campaign to more than 40 communities throughout the country. Parachute and ACICR worked together to deliver the campaign in Alberta.


Along with distributing tips for staying safe in and around water through its social media, Parachute also has developed numerous resources for parents and community organizations.


Thanks to everyone who participated in this year's successful Safe Kids Week!

Safe and Sure - New car seat installation program launches in Vancouver and the GTA

In our Spring issue, we announced Parachute's partnership with Chevrolet for the Safe and Sure Car Seat Installation Workshops.  Since the beginning of April, we have held 24 events in the GTA and Vancouver.


The workshops, taking place at Chevrolet dealerships in the Greater Toronto Area and Vancouver, provide parents and caregivers with one-on-one, hands-on instruction on how to properly install a car seat in their vehicle, and how to properly secure their child in the car seat.  Plans are underway to expand the program within the Montreal area in the upcoming months.


Child in a rear-facing car seat. We encourage communities to promote the Safe and Sure events and direct families to workshops in their area.  There is no charge for the workshops and they're open to the public.  All vehicle makes are welcome as are all types Canadian manufactured car seats that are compliant and not expired.


Parachute is looking for trained car seat technicians to come and help out at these events.  Interested volunteers can email Jacqueline Nadeau at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

A Big Year for Parachute's Brain Day!

It's been a busy year for Parachute's brain education program, Brain Day.  This year, Parachute reached 34,723 participants at 23 sites with 700 volunteers across Canada!  New this year, the program material was adapted for a First Nations audience and presented to Ontario First Nations community mentors in collaboration with Right to Play.


Brain Day is a free, informative and fun half-day neuroscience presentation for students in grades 4 to 6. Trained volunteers with an understanding and passion for injury prevention bring the hands-on program, which includes activity booklets, helmet fitting tips, and Jell-O Brains, to classrooms across Canada. 

What's New at Parachute

Guess What's on the Horizon at Parachute?

Search it. Find it. Share it. Prevent it.  This captures Parachute's latest initiative currently under development, Parachute's Horizon.  This project is underway thanks to the generous support from Parachute's National Development Sponsor Great-West Life, London Life, and Canada Life, and from the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation.


Parachute's Horizon will be a unique resource portal with virtual, interactive resources for youth, parents, teachers, guardians, coaches, public health professionals, and injury prevention practitioners.  It will house vetted, evidence-based content reflecting leading practice that is focused on preventing sports and recreation injuries, and keeping Canadians safe on the road. 


Parachute's Horizon will be a source for Canadians to learn about the best solutions to apply in their daily lives to better reduce the risk of injury.  And it will be a welcoming place -- coaching people to make the best decisions that will allow them to live a long life to the fullest.


We're working hard to collect and organize injury prevention information from Canada and around the world and promote it in a meaningful way.  While Parachute's Horizon is not completed yet, it will be soon - stay tuned!


New Board Members

Parachute is fortunate to be guided by a dedicated group of individuals who bring expertise in a diverse list of relevant fields, from injury prevention and medicine, to excellence in organizational governance and management.

We are happy to announce five new members to Parachute's Board of Directors:


David Todd Deveau, Vice President of Safety Quality and Environment, Jazz Aviation

David is a professional engineer with 18 years aviation management experience in addition to five years public sector executive experience with the Nova Scotia Department of Justice. His career has centered around process improvement, quality management and aviation safety, including workplace safety.


David Dunford, Managing Principal, Capco

David Dunford is an executive team leader and management consultant with 20 years of experience in banking and consulting. His passion is in designing and implementing transformational programs that change behaviours and actions, and as a result produce new and exceptional outcomes. 


Jennifer Evans, Chief, Peel Regional Police

In her 30+ year career, Chief Evans has worked on many notable assignments, her knowledge and experience is recognized both provincially and nationally.  For the past three years she has served as a member of the Executive of the Ontario Chiefs of Police Board of Directors and was appointed to Chief of Peel Regional Police in 2012.


Margie Parikh, Financial Planner

Margie is the Board Chair of Canada's largest outdoor equipment retailer MEC, has served on numerous other boards including CISV Canada (National Risk Manager), Kaleidoscope Theatre, the Women's Sexual Assault Centre, and Canadian Parents for French. She is passionate about good governance and the direct link it plays in enabling organizations and people to realise their goals.


Donna Wilson, Senior Vice President, People, LifeLabs Medical Laboratory Services

Donna leads all elements of Human Resources at LifeLabs and previously was VP, Industry Services and Sustainability at WorkSafeBC and Executive VP, Workforce and Sustainability at the Vancouver Olympic Organizing Committee (VANOC).  Throughout her career, Donna also held progressively more senior roles at Vancity Credit Union, BC Hydro, Canadian Airlines International and the BC Nurses Union. 


At the same time, we also want to thank and acknowledge the tremendous contributions made by retiring board members John Dalzell, past Chair of Safe Communities Canada, and Bryan Graham, former Treasurer of SMARTRISK. Their dedication and commitment to injury prevention in Canada, and to the creation of Parachute, is truly appreciated.


Leaders in the community
Profile on Safe Communities: Cranbrook, St. Thomas, Humboldt and South Shore

Take a glimpse at some Safe Communities across Canada and their activities.


Parachute spoke with four designated Safe Communities to find out how they promote safety in their communities.  What did we find?  While the South Shore, St. Thomas/Elgin, Humboldt and Cranbrook communities share similar areas of focus such as fall prevention and road safety, they each also target their initiatives to the specific needs of their region. 


South Shore, NS

The South Shore Safe Communities Initiative is active throughout the several counties that encompass Nova Scotia's South Shore region, including Queens, Lunenburg, Bridgewater and others.


A major focus for Lunenburg County is their Seniors' Safety Program.  With funding from both provincial and municipal governments and agencies such as the United Way, the program has a dedicated, experienced person to work with police on issues involving seniors.  This could include problems stemming from dementia, to unethical businesses and salespeople taking advantage of seniors. 


In Bridgewater and Queens Counties, the South Shore Safe Community has focused on road safety in areas such as distracted driving and speeding, with recent events in both areas held in conjunction with the RCMP and the local police.


The Safe Community initiative is also involved in community conflict resolution, where if neighbours have a dispute they have access to a mediator to help resolve it, instead of resorting to activities that might escalate to violence and injury.


Spokesperson Paul Fynes is particularly proud of South Shore's efforts at funding their safety initiatives.  Rather than members 'flipping burgers', the committee regularly works with local and provincial government and agencies to receive funding for their programs. 


St. Thomas/Elgin County, ON

The Safe Community Committee of St. Thomas and Elgin County was formed jointly by the St. Thomas and District Chamber of Commerce and the local public health unit for the sole purpose of increasing the quality of life for area residents and businesses. 


In June, the committee held a Priority Planning Session to establish up to date areas of focus.  With 92 people coming to the session representing a cross-section of the region's services (police, ambulance, health), the committee successfully set their goals with a great deal of enthusiastic support.


"It was a very warming feeling to see the amount of volunteers that came out of this session," says Bob Hammersley CEO St. Thomas & District Chamber of Commerce. "It shows people want to become engaged in this area."


A new initiative the St. Thomas committee will be undertaking addresses self harm and suicide.  Mental Health First Aid is a new training program to help employers (or anyone) aid people suffering from mental health issues.  Administered by the local branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association, what's unique about this initiative is that previous training such as this was only available to large companies. St. Thomas program allows them to 'take it to the streets' by offering training to smaller, local employers and individuals at an affordable cost.


Humboldt and Area, SK

In the farming community of Humboldt, SK, the Safe Community committee is active in many different areas of safety, with two areas focused specifically to their region's needs: farm safety and winter safety for newcomers. 


Each year they host the Progressive Agricultural Safety Day/Safe Community Day with a focus on farm safety, and they have also set up programs to help newcomers to the Humboldt area adjust to the winter's frigid temperatures and the dangers of winter driving.


This past week, the Humboldt Safe Community hosted a Bike Rodeo and Safety Day.  Partnering with BHP Billiton Community Engagement Team and the local ambulance, fire and RCMP divisions, the event featured helmet fittings, bike obstacle courses, and lots of different interactive stations where participants learned about brain safety and more.


And this summer, the committee will assist the RCMP and the Saskatchewan Prevention Institute with raising awareness of the new car seat legislation that is coming into effect.


With so many activities and programs, the Humboldt Safe Community focuses strongly on partnerships and works with as many organizations and entities as they can, both provincially and internationally, to achieve success.


"We're very proud of our work," says Tracey Shewciw, the Executive Director of Safe Community Humboldt.  "We work hard to build and keep relationships with our partners."


Cranbrook, BC

Cranbrook has a population of 20,000.  In a small community such as this, various organizations and committees often collaborate with each oth er to achieve their goals. This integrated method works well for the Safe Community Cranbrook Committee to reach their community with safety initiatives.


A big focus this year for Safe Community Cranbrook is suicide.  After receiving grant funding from a local trust, they are building a suicide protocol that addresses prevention, intervention and postvention.  The program aims to integrate the work of various local services and create a road map of community services along with what to expect.


The committee is also involved in the Community Response Network, with an emphasis on seniors' falls and elder abuse, as well being represented on several working committees throughout the city on issues such as speeding in school zones and traffic circles.


"Working with a smaller community has great personal rewards," says Safe Community Cranbrook spokesperson Gail Brown. "Our committee is vibrant and receives lots of warm feedback that really gives us momentum."


To learn more, visit Safe Communities.


Congratulations BC Injury Research and Prevention Unit!

Parachute congratulates the team at the British Columbia Injury Research and Prevention Unit (BCIRPU) for receiving a 2014 University of British Columbia President's Staff Award (Vancouver campus).


The award recognizes the contributions made by UBC staff members as well as their personal achievements and the contributions in supporting the vision and goals of the university.


The BCIRPU is the largest research lab in the Developmental Neurosciences & Child Health research cluster at UBC.  Its main focus and purpose is to reduce the burden of injury among British Columbians, which it does through contributions to dozens of programs both provincially and nationally.


Parachute often works in collaboration with the BCIRPU, most recently co-hosting the Watch Your Step National Fall Prevention Conference and we consider BCIRPU an essential partner in the field of injury prevention for Canadians.


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Parachute unites the former organizations of Safe Communities Canada, Safe Kids Canada, SMARTRISK, and ThinkFirst Canada into one leader in injury prevention.