The Northern Cheyenne Tribal Transportation Department has started a new campaign this month, as pow wow season begins, hoping to increase seat belt use across all American Indian reservations in the region.
In a media release, Janis Spear with the department says the theme of the education campaign is "cross your heart." She says when you wear a seat belt property, the shoulder strap crosses the center of the chest - over the heart. The theme is also a phrase some use when making a promise.
And Spear is hoping all American Indians can remember to keep that promise. She says seat belt use continues to be low on reservation roads when compared to other areas outside of reservations. Failure to buckle up has led to higher death rates among American Indians compared to other races.
Spear says "crossing your heart" is one of the simplest things we can do to save lives and stave off preventable injuries and deaths associated with not wearing a seat belt.