Advocates Applauds Michigan Governor Granholm

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Jeremy Gunderson
June 23, 2006 (202) 408-1711 x27

ADVOCATES FOR HIGHWAY AND AUTO SAFETY (ADVOCATES)
APPLAUDS GOVERNOR GRANHOLM FOR VETOING LEGISLATION REPEALING MICHIGAN'S ALL RIDER MOTORCYCLE HELMET LAW


Washington, DC - Following days of speculation and hints of her intent, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm today laid to rest a dangerous piece of legislation that would have lifted 37-year-old all-rider motorcycle helmet use requirements throughout the state. The Michigan legislature sent the bill to the governor's desk when the Assembly passed it on June 7 by a vote of 66 to 37. An identical Senate version was passed in 2005.

"We thank Governor Granholm for her strong political leadership in vetoing SB 297. Any pushback she receives from motorcyclists against helmet laws is more than compensated by the lives and costs to the state she has saved today," said Judith Lee Stone, president of Advocates.

An intense lobbying effort by local and national groups in favor of keeping the law helped bolster Granholm's decision to veto SB 297. Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety spearheaded a letter to Granholm urging her to veto the bill, signed by numerous leaders of medical, public health and safety and safety organizations, auto manufacturers and the insurance industry.
SB 297 would have made wearing a motorcycle helmet optional for those 21 and over. Such laws that exist in the majority of states are virtually unenforceable. Every state that has chosen to repeal its all-rider helmet law has experienced a dramatic drop in helmet use accompanied by a tragic increase in deaths and brain injuries. Since 1969, Michigan's all-rider motorcycle helmet law has resulted in fewer per-capita motorcycle injuries and deaths than in states without such a law.

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Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety is a coalition of consumer, health, safety and insurance companies working together to advance highway and auto safety.

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