2018 Child Endangerment Report



Additional Research Needed To understand the ever-evolving complexities of the issue of drunk driving child endangerment, additional research is needed. Some suggested areas of future research include: • The correlation between all-offender interlocks and rates of child endangerment, • Additional research on the impact of general deterrence laws, such as sobriety checkpoints and primary seat belt laws, on child endangerment, • More research on the impact of drugged driving • More research on the efficacy of Leandra’s Law Making Child Endangerment a National Priority Since the original panel convened in 2002, motor vehicle crashes continue to outrank all other injuries and diseases as the major cause of death for children ages 1 and above. The Centers for Disease Control found that one in five deaths of child passengers are caused by drunk drivers and most often (64 percent of time), they are passengers in the impaired driver’s vehicle. In 2016 alone, 214 children were killed in drunk driving crashes. Fifty-four percent were passengers of vehicles with alcohol- impaired drivers, and 46 percent of these children were unrestrained. MADD and other safety advocates must remain vigilant in efforts to save the lives of children endangered by drinking and drugged drivers, propelling this issue to the status of a national priority. It is this panel’s conclusion that this may be accomplished through the efforts and recommendations outlined in this report. MADD’s Position Statement on Child Endangerment Mothers Against Drunk Driving supports the enhancement of sanctions against convicted drunk drivers when the offender was driving with a minor child in the vehicle. MADD also supports amendments to State Family Codes indicating that evidence of driving while intoxicated with children in the vehicle is considered against the “best interest of the child” in suits affecting the parent-child relationship.


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