Cohen Children’s Medical Center Joins Forces with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and Toyota to Bring the Buckle Up For Life Program to New York

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National Child Car Safety Program Helps Save Lives by Educating Communities About the
Number One Cause of Death of Children under the Age of 12, Motor Vehicle-Related Crashes

NEW YORK (Nov. 13, 2013) – Cohen Children’s Medical Center announced it has partnered with Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and Toyota to bring the Buckle Up for Life program, a national, community-based injury prevention program, to New York.
Building on a partnership that began in 2004 between one of the world’s leading children’s hospitals – Cincinnati Children’s – and the global automotive manufacturer – Toyota, the Buckle Up for Life program is designed to help save lives by educating communities about the number one cause of death of children under the age of 12 in the United States–motor vehicle crashes.
Car crashes are the number one killer of children in the United States between the ages 1 and 12.[i] Only 1 out of every 4 child car seats are properly installed.[ii] Furthermore, due to multiple factors, Hispanic and African American children are 10 times less likely to be properly restrained in a vehicle[iii].
“We are excited to be a partner of the Buckle Up for Life program,” said Debora Riccardi, Director of Community Outreach at Cohen Children’s Medical Center. “The number of children dying unnecessarily in motor vehicle-related crashes remains high and we aim to raise awareness of the importance of being properly secured in motor vehicles, preventing injury and helping to save lives. Buckle Up for Life is a monumental initiative and we are so proud to be part of this national movement.”
Multi-year, Multi-million Dollars Funds Buckle Up for Life Expansion 

As part of Toyota’s ongoing commitment to provide safety programs to passengers and drivers of all ages, the company announced in September that it increased funding of Buckle Up for Life by six million dollars over the next three years, allowing the program to expand from the current eight cities to a total of 17 cities by 2016. This investment is added to the more than two and a half million dollars of support Toyota has provided over the past nine years.  To-date Buckle Up for Life has had tremendous results, including providing more than 40,000 child car seats to families in need.  In one city alone, the use of proper child car seats by program participants nearly tripled.
In additional to partnering with Cohen Children’s Medical Center, this year Buckle Up for Life has also partnered with Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital (Memphis, TN) and Phoenix Children’s Hospital (Phoenix, AZ). They join successful programs already in place with local hospital partners in Chicago, Cincinnati, Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Orange Country, CA, and San Antonio.
“At Toyota, we are strongly committed to the belief that driver and passenger safety is a universal need and something everyone should have access to,” said Latondra Newton, Chief Corporate Social Responsibility Officer of Toyota Motor North America Inc. “That is why we partnered with Cincinnati Children’s to create Buckle Up for Life and now expand to even more cities.  We consider today to be both a celebration of all we have achieved and a call to action for the tremendous amount of work still to be done.”
Buckle Up for Life Pledge
The Buckle Up for Life pledge is a national call to action inviting the public to take a pledge to Buckle Up for Life and share the safety with loved ones. Visit the Buckle Up for Life website, or join the more than 170 million members of the Causes community at to take the pledge. 
"With North Shore-LIJ, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and Toyota partnering together, we are finding a solution to the problem of poor car seat safety to better protect our children,” said Congressman Steve Israel, Representative for the 3rd District of New York. “I'm proud to join with Cohen Children's Medical Center, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and Toyota as they introduce Buckle Up for Life right here in New York. This innovative partnership will help save lives by educating our communities about the importance of wearing a safety belt and proper car seat installation."

[iii]NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts (2008 Data) — Research Note

Buckle Up for Life is a national, community-based injury prevention program, created in 2004 in a partnership between trauma specialists at Cincinnati Children’s and Toyota. The program’s main goal is to help save lives by educating communities about the number one cause of death of children under the age of 12 in the U.S.
Buckle Up for Life works with local hospitals, churches and other trusted community partners in cities across the United States to address the economic, cultural and language barriers around motor vehicle safety. Over a six-week period, the program’s medical experts and trained specialists work closely with participants of all ages and backgrounds to deliver vital safety information in an engaging, culturally-sensitive and memorable way. To date, the program has donated more than 40,000 child car seats to families in need and has made a significant impact, including tripling the proper use of child car seats among program participants in one city.
Through an expanded multi-year, multi-million dollar commitment from Toyota in 2013, Buckle Up for Life will continue to expand to new cities each year while leading a national movement to help elevate the conversation about this critical issue. To take the Buckle Up for Life pledge, learn more about the program and find child passenger safety resources, please visit
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center ranks third in the nation among all Honor Roll hospitals in U.S. News and World Report’s 2013 Best Children’s Hospitals ranking. It is ranked #1 for cancer and in the top 10 for nine of 10 pediatric specialties.
Cincinnati Children’s, a non-profit organization, is one of the top two recipients of pediatric research grants from the National Institutes of Health, and a research and teaching affiliate of the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.
The medical center is internationally recognized for improving child health and transforming delivery of care through fully integrated, globally recognized research, education and innovation.
Additional information can be found at Connect on the Cincinnati Children’s blog, via Facebook and on Twitter.
Cohen Children’s Medical Center, part of the North Shore-LIJ Health System, opened in 1983. Designed for children only, this 164-bed hospital is a regional, tertiary care facility that includes Long Island’s only pediatric trauma unit. The hospital is recognized by US News & World Report magazine as one of the nation’s top children’s hospitals.
More information about Cohen Children’s Medical Center and its commitment to keeping its community safe and healthy can be found at
About Toyota
Toyota (NYSE: TM) established operations in the United States in 1957 and currently operates 10 manufacturing plants.  Toyota directly employs over 31,000 in the United States and its investment here is currently valued at more than $19.5 billion, including sales and manufacturing operations, research and development, financial services and design.
Toyota is committed to being a good corporate citizen in the communities where it does business and believes in supporting programs with long-term sustainable results. Toyota supports numerous organizations across the country, focusing on education, the environment and safety. To date, Toyota has contributed $700 million to nonprofits in the United States.
For more information on Toyota's commitment to improving communities nationwide, visit   

Michelle Pinto (Cohen Children’s Medical Center)
[email protected]
Jennifer Vasquez (Edelman)
[email protected]


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