Nation’s Top Doc Wants Your Ideas: How Can Walking Be Safe and Convenient?
Walking is the most common form of physical activity and one of the most beneficial. It’s gentle, low-impact, and can improve physical and mental health. It’s good for the economy, the environment and for the health of the public in general. If Americans walked more, it could help reverse the national epidemic of chronic disease.
Yet many people live in communities where walking isn’t convenient, safe or accessible. Sidewalks may be broken or non-existent. Parks may be hard to get to using public transit. Neighborhoods may be too violent for people to feel safe walking by themselves.
The U.S. Surgeon General is developing a Call to Action on Walking and Walkable Environments and is seeking comments and suggestions from people and organizations across the country. On behalf of Convergence Partnership, Prevention Institute and PolicyLink have submitted recommendations. We urge you to look at our ideas (click here) and then to submit your own by going to this link. Among other points, we suggest that the Surgeon General’s plan:
- Prioritize the walking needs of low-income Americans and communities of color that are disproportionately affected by chronic diseases associated with inadequate physical activity.
- Promote investment in infrastructure that makes it safe and convenient for people to walk in their communities.
- Foster involvement and create collaboration among many stakeholders at local, state and national levels.
Let’s help make our communities places where it’s easy, safe and pleasant to walk.