Who we are, what we do and why
PEDS is a small advocacy group with a very big impact. We’ve done an amazing job inspiring transportation agencies to expand their safety toolkits and allocate more funding to sidewalks and safe crossings.
The goal: making communities in Georgia safe, inviting and accessible to everyone who walks.
Our proudest accomplishments include:
- Making innovative and effective crosswalk treatments mainstream
- Providing workshops and toolkits that have helped hundreds of transportation professionals learn how to design for pedestrian safety
- Making safe crossings at bus stops a local, regional and state priority
- Increasing the number of drivers who stop for people in crosswalks
We partner with others to make change happen.
We’re all in this together. We work with transportation agencies, neighborhood organizations and others to bring about pedestrian-friendly policies, plans, and street designs.
We also collaborate with police officers and the media to promote increased compliance with speed limits and crosswalk laws.
Passion, purpose, persistence and patience have been the cornerstones of our progress.
When PEDS was founded in 1996, pedestrians were not on Atlanta’s radar screen. Speeding drivers put kids at risk. And few drivers stopped for pedestrians in crosswalks.
Sally Flocks, PEDS founder and CEO, had been unable to drive for most of her adult life. She grew up in California, where drivers stop for pedestrians in crosswalks and police officers ticket those who don’t. Not so here. Sally decided Atlanta could do better – and she could do something to make that happen.
It’s hard to imagine, but Sally flunked her driver’s exam on her sixteenth birthday. She learned an important lesson: pedestrians have the right of way in crosswalks. She assumed drivers here failed to understand crosswalk laws. Hence our full name: Pedestrians Educating Drivers on Safety.
We quickly outgrew that, as bad road design breeds bad driving. Put differently, teaching drivers who has the right of way is just the tip of the iceberg.
Even more important: teaching transportation professionals how to design streets for people who walk.
Evolving from a lone, sometimes caustic voice for change, PEDS has become a strong voice for walkers throughout the region and state. We’ve also matured into a well-respected resource for elected officials, neighborhood organizations, local, regional and state transportation professionals and others.
Advocacy is a marathon, not a sprint.
Our progress has been gratifying. Yet without doubt, conditions for people who walk still need improvement.
Many streets lack sidewalks. And far too many that do exist need to be repaired or replaced. And due to wide, high-speed roads that lack safe crossings, the Atlanta region remains one of the nation’s deadliest places to walk.
Like you, we’re dedicated to increasing community health and quality of life. By walking more and inspiring changes that create more walkable places, all of us can make that vision a reality.
Your support makes advocacy happen.
Everybody walks. And everybody wants their community to be a safe, inviting place to walk. We’re here to help, and you can count on us to never, ever give up.
Your contributions sustain our efforts to make the Atlanta region a place where pedestrians can thrive. Join the revolution!