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PR- 037-08
February 3, 2008


The following is the text of Mayor Bloomberg's weekly radio address as prepared for delivery on 1010 WINS News Radio for Sunday, February 3, 2008

"Good morning. This is Mayor Mike Bloomberg.

"Whether you're two, 92, or somewhere in between, New York is the greatest city in the world. And today, I'd like to discuss a couple of ways we're making it even greater for some of our oldest and youngest residents. Let's start with our seniors. New York is already a fantastic city for seniors - we've got first-rate services, a mass transit system that makes getting around town affordable and easy, and a vibrant spirit that keeps all of us young at heart. But there's still a lot we can do to make the city more accessible to older New Yorkers, and now's the time to start - because over the next 20 years, the percentage of New Yorkers over the age of 60 is expected to nearly double.

"This year we're launching a major effort called the All Ages Project to completely re-envision what it means to grow older in New York. In the months ahead, we'll ask ourselves how we can improve the delivery of senior services, how we can encourage activities that promote healthy aging, and how we can make our parks and streets safer and more accessible for older New Yorkers.

"On Tuesday, we began to answer that last question by kicking off a new program to improve safety at intersections and areas that are especially problematic for seniors. According to the most recent data, the traffic fatality rate in New York City is only about one-quarter of the national average. And last year, traffic and pedestrian fatalities in our city dropped to their lowest levels since records started being kept in 1910. But even though the overall number of fatalities continues to decline, nearly 40 percent of the fatal accidents that do happen involve older New Yorkers.

"To help keep our seniors safe, and to give all of us more confidence crossing the street, the Department of Transportation is making improvements to hundreds of intersections in 25 neighborhoods across the city. We've already begun work in Brighton Beach, where we've re-timed traffic lights at key locations to give pedestrians some extra time to cross. And, we'll be making safety enhancements in many other communities with high concentrations of seniors, including Flushing, the Lower East Side, University Heights in the Bronx, and Staten Island.

"As we work to make the city better for older New Yorkers, we're also going to help some of our youngest residents by expanding the successful Nurse Family Partnership, which is dramatically improving the health of infants and mothers across our city. The Nurse Family Partnership posts experienced nurses in poor communities to help first-time mothers during pregnancy and the first two years of their babies' lives. It has already improved the health of infants in Jamaica, Harlem, Central Brooklyn, and the South Bronx. Now, we're taking the Nurse Family Partnership to the next level by extending its reach to all five boroughs, and more than doubling the number of sites with new locations in East New York, Astoria, the Rockaways, Coney Island, Staten Island, and the Lower East Side. Providing services in these neighborhoods will allow us to help more than 1,000 new families this year. Anyone who is interested in finding out more about the Nurse Family Partnership can call 3-1-1.

"New York City is a financial hub, a cultural capital, a media mecca, and a center for world-class sports and entertainment. But at the end of the day, we're also the place where kids grow up, and grandparents grow old. That's why we're going to keep working to make New York an even better city for the oldest and youngest among us. I know from experience that when New Yorkers work together, there's no challenge we can't meet. And the Giants are going to prove that again today when they take the field in Arizona.

"This is Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Thanks for listening, and Let's Go Giants!"


Stu Loeser   (212) 788-2958

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