This week, Google announced an exciting new phase in its self-driving car project with the spinoff of a new company called Waymo. The new company follows eight years of work by Google to revolutionize transportation in America.
This progress could not come at a better time. Traffic fatalities increased by 7.2 percent in 2015 and are expected to increase by up to 10 percent in 2016. Technology can reverse this trend.
Self-driving cars are another technology that could lead to the elimination of drunk driving. Their development will help us reach our ultimate goal of No More Victims®.
We are in the middle of tremendous growth and change in technology development. MADD looks forward to Waymo furthering the incredible progress already made by Google as we work with our many partners to eliminate the 100 percent preventable crime of drunk driving.
If you woudl like to join with MADD in support of lifesaving technology, please consider donating here.
For many people, this is a season of celebrations. However, the holidays are often a difficult time for those who are coping with grief due to a death or serious injury. At this time of year memories of past holidays can be overwhelming, what may have been a joyful time in the past may now seem meaningless.
Friends and relatives sometimes fail to realize how significant their role can be in the healing process during the holidays. You can be a healing agent to those you love this holiday season.
Here are some ways that you can help a loved one struggling with the holidays:
- Stay in touch, sometimes loved ones distance those who are grieving, they may be trying to protect them, but when contact is lost the victim or survivor can feel abandoned. Offer to come visit; even if they don’t feel like going out, they may want to have you visit or call to check in on them.
- Invite victims and survivors to social outings. Don’t assume he or she should go or wouldn’t go. Simply ask, and accept the response. It won’t hurt to ask a second time a few days later if the first response was negative, but the decision is still theirs.
- Invite those who are grieving to attend a holiday vigil to honor their loved one.
- Ask to help with specific tasks. “Call me if you need me” is not always a useful offer as often those grieving don’t want to burden others. Instead say, “I’d love to do some shopping for you when I do mine. May I?” or “I imagine decorating the house will be hard this year. May I come help you or do it for you some morning?”
- Be a good listener. The holidays will draw out deep feelings for surviving families. Many will feel they must talk about their loved one. Hear their feelings and accept them. Learn to be comfortable with silences and don’t feel you need to interrupt them. If you don’t know what to say it’s ok to be quiet or tell them you care about them.
- Write a holiday letter. Many things can be said on paper which may be difficult to say in person. A letter can be treasured, read again and again, and kept forever.
- Give a gift or make a donation in honor of the victim or survivor to their favorite charity.
- If a loved one has been killed, it’s good to speak their name often. It is important for someone who is bereaved to speak and hear their loved one’s name. It may be painful, but the pain is already there and the opportunity to talk about the one they miss so much will be cherished.
If you or a loved one would like to talk with someone about coping during the holidays or for any reason, please call our 24-Hour Victim Help Line at 1-877-MADD-HELP (877-623-3435) or visit madd.org to chat online.
MADD CEO Debbie Weir went live on Facebook Live this week to discuss the major accomplishments of 2016, what's in store for 2017 and why December donations mean so much to MADD and victims of drunk and drugged driving.
Watch it now.
MADD needs to raise $300,000 this month to ensure we can continue to provide victims with services across the country at no charge, take the battle for justice to the politicians, support law enforcement, and help move life saving technology to the market faster. Please give today.