CATA and EndDD Community Outreach

Ellen Hobbs Hirshman

Ellen Hobbs Hirshman

Attorney at Loucas Law
Ellen is an experienced Ohio trial attorney with a focus on medical malpractice and catastrophic injuries.She is a past President of the Cleveland Academy of Trial Attorneys and Chair of their Community Outreach Committee.
Ellen Hobbs Hirshman

On Tuesday, May 10, 2016, I traveled to Shaker Heights, Ohio to discuss the dangers of distracted driving with 235 Laurel School students.  The Cleveland Academy of Trail Attorneys CATA and its Community Outreach Committee partnered up with the Casey Feldman Foundation and the End Distracted Driving Program over 2 years ago because it is CATA’s mission to educate as many people as possible about the choices we make every day when driving.

Today’s presentation to these 7th-11th grade students was well received.  These students learned that although we may never have been in a car accident, if we drive distracted, we are merely lucky drivers.  The audience was also impressed with the concept that they can help change their friends’ behavior by engaging in discussions about their driving habits.  Also, as a passenger, you possess the power to affect another person’s driving behavior.  Two students assisted me in a “role playing” exercise where one student took on the role of the distracted driver, and the other student was the passenger, trying to effectively change the dangerous driving habits of her friend.

The demonstration was a wonderful illustration and reminder that we are confronted with these behaviors every day and it is time to stand up and choose to not permit someone to drive you distracted.  In the end, the students left with a lot of information and statistics to digest.  They promised to take the Family Safe Driving Agreement home to discuss with their families.

Over these past 2 years, CATA has been responsible for more than 20 presentations, and will continue to sponsor these presentations.  It is our belief that we can make a difference and change people’s attitudes toward driving and make them safe drivers, not just lucky drivers!