Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Tennessee is in danger of losing a key funding piece that matches funds, enabling MADD TN to offer free victim services. Nationwide, over 10,000 people are killed--and 300,000 people are injured--in drunk driving crashes each year. In 2015, according to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, TITAN, there were 8,278 impaired driving related crashes resulting in 375 deaths and 5,764 injuries. All of these crashes are 100% preventable.
"Our MADD TN license plates are rolling billboards raising awareness about impaired driving and thousands of dollars to help MADD's efforts in Tennessee," noted volunteer Norris Skelley of Cookeville, Tennessee. Norris and his wife, Aline, were two of the chief volunteers that campaigned to get the MADD TN plate that went into production in 1997.
If MADD TN fails to maintain a minimum of 500 plates in circulation by June 30, 2016 the plate will be retired and the organization will lose over $15,000 of annual funding, as well as the awareness that it creates. Currently, MADD TN needs approximately 70 plates to be purchased. The MADD plate costs $35, with $30.75 going towards MADD's efforts to make Tennessee roadways safer.
MADD volunteers are urging concerned citizens across the state to step forward and make a MADD dash to their county clerk's office to purchase a plate that will support MADD Tennessee's work to save lives and serve victims.
State Program Director Kate Ritchie said, "I am very thankful to our faithful Tennessee volunteers and supporters, who made the license plate initiative possible and who are now reaching out to their family and friends to keep the MADD TN plate. Their dedication is inspiring. With 95 counties in Tennessee, we would exceed our goal if one person from each county purchased a plate. It's proof that one person can make a change.