Tucson Police Department, Banner UMC give out reflective backpacks

Those experiencing homelessness got backpacks from Tucson police and Banner UMC.
Those experiencing homelessness got backpacks from Tucson police and Banner UMC.(KOLD)
Published: Jun. 6, 2022 at 4:47 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The Tucson Police Department partnered with Banner-University Medical Center Tucson to raise awareness and hand out reflective backpacks in the hopes of reducing the amount of pedestrians getting hit by vehicles throughout Tucson.

The TPD and Banner trauma team gathered on Monday, June 6 to distribute backpacks to people experiencing homelessness who can be found on Miracle Mile, Fort Lowell Road, Stone Avenue, Speedway Boulevard, and Oracle Road, which are the areas with the most reported incidents of people being struck by vehicles.

According to the CDC, over 7,000 pedestrians were killed in vehicle crashes in 2020 in the United States.

In Tucson, there were 11 pedestrian deaths in 2021 and so far, there have been 20 more in 2022.

Due to the high volume of pedestrian-automobile-related injuries the Banner trauma team has witnessed in their facility, they made the decision to join forces with the TPD in support of increasing awareness about this issue.

“Partnering with Banner in this effort to disperse traffic safety gear to our most vulnerable population was the right thing to do and necessary to promote public safety,” said Jack Julsing, a sergeant in the TPD homeless outreach team. “Getting our unhoused population educated on traffic safety and providing them with apparel that will help keep them safe is paramount if we want to reduce traffic fatalities and keep our city safe.”

Over 100 reflective bags were given out at today’s distribution.

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