SEPTA received one of ten Operation Lifesaver Inc., (OLI) grants to support rail transit public awareness and safety education projects and campaigns.
SEPTA will use the $16,754 award to enhance its work with the Regional Suicide Prevention Task Force of Southeastern Pennsylvania (RSPTF).
This year, SEPTA and RSPTF are partnering on a suicide prevention campaign aimed at suicide prevention among first responders and veterans.
SEPTA works very closely with police, fire and rescue personnel throughout our service region, many times when responding to the scene of a fatal accident. We know the stress these men and women handle on a daily basis. The work we are doing in partnership with RSPTF will help bring attention to the well being of our first responders and veterans—those who risk their lives for their communities and country—and how the nature of their careers can lead them to suicide.
We thank OLI for the grant which will support this very important initiative.
More than 50% of the fatalities on SEPTA’s rail system each year are ruled suicides. On September 10 — World Suicide Prevention Day — SEPTA Safety Officers and RSPTF volunteers will distribute pamphlets at select SEPTA rail and rail transit stations during the morning rush hour. That day, the SEPTA and RSPTF officials will also be joined by local first responders to unveil the awareness campaign’s car card that will appear on more than 1,400 buses in SEPTA’s fleet.
OLI is a nonprofit public safety education and awareness organization dedicated to reducing collisions, fatalities and injuries at highway-rail crossings and preventing trespassing on or near railroad tracks.
OLI’s grants will help fund campaigns that remain committed to keeping the public safe when driving or walking near commuter trains, light rail or streetcars. OLI awarded a total of $175,000 in grants to 10 transit agencies across the United States. Each agency is required to provide a 25% match. A team of transit safety and education professionals evaluated the applications based upon criteria such as key safety messages, target audiences and evaluation methods.
Operation Lifesaver, Inc. administers grant funding on behalf of the Federal Transit Administration to increase awareness about the importance of rail safety education. Visit www.oli.org for additional information about the 2019 grantees and download its materials for additional outreach efforts.