Courtesy: European Cyclists' Federation. Source: John Pucher, City Cycling
The final day of the Velo-city Global 2012 conference in Vancouver, BC set the stage for a future where child-friendly streets are the new normal.
“We’re calling upon the United Nations and we call upon you, Ban Ki-moon, to give all children access to cycling,” said Bernhard Ensink, Secretary General of the European Cyclists’ Federation.
Linking to the Convention of the Rights of the Child, the Charter calls upon the UN and other institutions to consider cycling as a human right for children and “to include cycling as part of all sustainable transport policies and strategies.”
Across the globe, the number of kids that walk or cycle to school has decreased from 82% to 14% within the last 30 years. While some countries such as the Netherlands have high levels of children cycling to school (50%), others such as the US (1%), Canada (2%), the United Kingdom (2%) and Australia (2%) need to increase their efforts.
Addressing the audience during Velo-city Global, Dr. Paul Tranter, Geography Professor at the University of New South Wales said: “If we get it right for children, we’ll get it right for cycling and if we get it right for cycling, we’ll get it right for children,”
“At the end of the day, who can argue against safer cities for children?” he added.
ECF is calling upon institutions to sign the charter that can be found here: ecf.com/children-have-the-right-to-cycle
ABOUT VELO-CITY GLOBAL 2012
Velo-city Global is the world's premier international cycling planning conference. The four-day event offers delegates from around the world a chance to share best practices for creating and sustaining cycling-friendly cities where bicycles are valued as part of daily transport and recreation.
The Velo-city Global conference unites politicians, engineers, planners, architects, social marketers, academics, researchers, environmentalists, advocates, educators and industry representatives. Delegates join forces and foster international collaborations. The event also draws experts from related areas, such as health, economics and the environment.