Kelly Ann Cosentino, in front of donated billboard signs in Miami. Courtesy: Carter Outdoor Advertising Company.
I must announce that I am now in college, but I am not giving up! Before I left for school, I spent a week working on the Florida Senate floor as a "Page". It was exciting and I had a chance to watch debates over Florida gun laws, students came forward in support of stronger legislation. But I was there to learn, and to see if I could get a strong new piece of child-safety legislation passed. I have been working on the new law for one year and I have gotten some support from the Florida senators. For example, I received good support from Florida Senator Baxley, a child safety advocate, a man worthy of great respect. Now, there is a child safety committee considering whether they will introduce the bill to the Senators. I want this bill passed into law, making the penalties harsher, because children forgotten in the back seat of cars is not a problem that is going away.
In 2018 we hit a record number of deaths- 51 children died an agonizing end to the beginning of their childhood. Florida is the second worst state for child deaths, after Texas. But California, a much larger state with warm climate also, has very few deaths in comparison. Why? I believe they take child safety seriously. I know the good people and government officials here in Florida also care, but there is a short circuit somewhere. I have tried for five years to get the State of Florida to promote this issue more- in their driver license handbooks, the schools (I even wrote a curriculum), other traffic agencies. I just can't get enough movement. Well I am in school now, and as of today, 837 children have died this year (2019) from heat stroke since 1998! This will be another bad year. One lost child is painful, how about loosing 51 in just one year? We need state campaigns, advertising on TV and Radio. Especially during the summer months. I can only do so much. I got the support of Mayor Regalado, even found a wonderful company, Carter Outdoor Advertising, to put up two beautiful bill boards. But we need a lot more. This blog is getting too long so- To be continued.. Meanwhile, please spread the word- "Look before you lock". Save a life TODAY. Thank you.