Thursday, October 02, 2014
   
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YCIP’ers work to stop texting & driving

Students sign pledges during lunch break.

Janae Wiggins has seen people driving around town while texting on their cell phones.

“They clearly are not paying attention,” said the Gothenburg High School senior. “I think it’s scary to feel you’re not safe when it’s going on.”

As a result, and after borrowing an idea from the Future Business Leaders of America in Cozad, several members of Gothenburg’s Youth Community Improvement Program (YCIP) started their own campaign against texting and driving.

The students received money for a banner and bracelets from State Farm Insurance agent Heidi Bazata who sponsored the campaign.

For a couple of days last week during their lunch break, students were then asked to sign the banner.

Signers then received a bracelet, reminding them of their signed pledge not to text and drive.

YCIP’er and senior Jordyn Haake said she thought most everyone in high school signed the banner which will be hung in the Main Street area of the school.

During high school announcements, which are broadcast to classrooms, YCIP’ers included messages about the dangers of texting and driving.

Haake said she thought the campaign was important because driving requires one’s full attention.

“When you’re on the phone, you’re not attentive,” Haake said.

She noted that texting and driving is becoming more of a societal problem.

“It’s the way we communicate now,” junior and fellow YCIP’er Makayla Franzen said.

Both Franzen and Haake said they think texting and driving is difficult to do in the first place.

Wiggins wondered if the problem might be more prevalent in smaller communities like Gothenburg.

Without a lot of traffic, she said motorists might be more inclined to try it.

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