CCCSH has worked for over twenty years to address a variety of unintentional injury issues causing injury, disability and death for far too many of California’s children. Besides the pain, suffering and cost of broken limbs and damaged internal organs and skin, unintentional injury is the number one cause of brain injury and a significant cost to California’s tax payers. A severe brain injury is tragic and costly. A disability can result in more than $5 million in emergency services, and the on-going costs for healthcare, treatment and follow up care costs. Unintentional injury is an important issue for the individuals suffering injury and their families, and to society as a whole.

CCCSH is a 501(c)(3) non-profit lead by a Board of Directors and staffed by leaders from the public policy firm Sacramento Advocacy.

Early in 1990’s California’s Department of Health Care Services, under the leadership of Dr. Alex Kelter, Barb Alberson, Roger Trent and Steve Wertz, to name a few, brought together more than 50 experts in the field of unintentional injury, to help the state develop a strategic plan addressing many of the issues and causes of unintentional injury. CCCSH, under the leadership of Brad Wenger, President of the Association of CA Life and Health Insurance Companies, Robert Haskel and Michele Townsend of Pacific Life, Billy Weiss at the Southern CA Injury Prevention Research Center at the UCLA School of Public Health, Barbara Cappa representing the Junior Leagues of California, Steve Barrow, President & CEO Advocates for Health, Economics and Development, Nadina Riggsbee, founder of the Drowning Prevention Foundation, Marsha Kerr, with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, Liz McClatchy, President of the Safety Center, Jack Walsh, who has represented issues around safe cribs and the Keeping Kids Safe organization and various other members representing the PTA, education, ski safety, and others.

In order to affect public policy change, CCCSH has brought together representatives from public health, the healthcare system, law enforcement, fire departments, safety organizations, children’s advocates and the insurance industry, to prioritize and implement the goals and objectives in the state’s strategic plan. As you will see by reviewing the list of accomplishments below, much has been accomplished over the last two decades, but there is much more to be done.

But, California is a large and complex state. More than 38 million people live here, spread over more than 158,000 square miles, with 58 independent counties, 478 cities and literally thousands of special districts, fire districts, school districts and other entities with a stake in the unintentional injury issue. California is the most culturally diverse state in the United States, and is home to more than 50 different ethnic populations. Addressing and reducing injury, disability and death from unintentional injuries involving vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, falls, burns, drowning, suffocation, poisoning and other accidents is an ongoing and daunting task.

Below is a brief overview of a current priority project under construction at CCCSH.

It has been more than a decade since California had a comprehensive strategic plan setting goals for reducing unintentional injuries. CCCSH has taken up the challenge and will host a year-long project to gather experts in this issue area, policy experts, policymakers, funders and others, to develop an updated injury prevention strategic plan to reduce and eliminate unintentional injuries in California.

Priority steps toward developing a 2014-2020 California Strategic Plan for Unintentional Injuries:

  • Add additional experts and leaders to the CCCSH Board of Directors. CCCSH Co-chairs Brad Wenger and Steve Barrow, working with CCCSH staff, will lead this Board effort.
  • Identify and convene unintentional injury experts, leaders and affiliates with a stake in this broad and important issue area.
  • Seek supporting funding and resources to create sustainable support for the project and spin off project, such as communications, data collection, research, policy development and compiling a Strategic Plan report and report card.
  • Host a statewide conference on May 14 and 15, 2014 in Sacramento to provide a setting to help frame the updated strategic plan and increase the active participation of stakeholders in the project.
  • Convene an inclusive drafting team to pen the Strategic Plan contents.

CCCSH will also be active in ongoing issues and efforts to support known solutions and best practices addressing unintentional injury, and working to make sure the issues are represented at the “public policy tables” that will impact our efforts.


AB 3087 (Speier) Kids’ Plates: This bill, co-sponsored by CCCSH, established the “Kids’ Plate” vehicle license plate to provide funding for children’s safety and injury prevention programs through the sale of plates that include symbols of a hand, a heart, a plus sign and a star. Signed into law.

AB 2942 (Archie Hudson) Buckets: This measure, supported by CCCSH, requires manufacturers of 5 gallon buckets to display a warning label of the potential for child drownings. Signed into law.

AB 2268 (Caldera) Bicycle Helmets: This CCCSH sponsored bill requires children under the age of 18 to wear safety helmets when riding bicycles. Signed into law.

AB 1856 (Speier) Flotation Devices: This measure, supported by CCCSH, requires children 6 years old and younger to wear flotation devices while on board a vessel that is underway. Signed into law.

AB 3760 (Speier) Crib Safety: This measure, co-sponsored with CCCSH member the Danny Foundation, establishes safety standards for cribs sold in California. Signed into law.

Swimming Pool Safety: CCCSH and the Drowning Prevention Foundation co-sponsored a petition to the Building Standards Commission requesting that they update the building code to incorporate drowning prevention strategies in the construction of residential swimming pools. Adopted.

AB 3305 (Setencich/Speier) Pool Safety: This measure, sponsored by CCCSH, established the Swimming Pool Safety Act, requiring new pools built after January 1, 1998 to have one of five specified safety devices in order to prevent toddler drowning. Signed into law.

SB 1329 (Leslie) Teen Driving: This measure, supported by CCCSH, established the Graduated Drivers’ License program which restricts the driving privileges of new teen drivers for the first six months of their driving. Signed into law.

SB 567 (Speier) Booster Seats: This CCCSH sponsored bill increased the age at which a child is required to be restrained in a booster seat from 4 to 6 years of age, and increased weight requirements for this provision from 40 pounds to 60 pounds. This measure also increased fines for violating this provision. Signed into law.

SB 255 (Speier) Children in Vehicles: This measure, co-sponsored with the “Kids in Cars” organization, makes it illegal to leave young children unattended in a vehicle. Signed into law.

SB 1924 (O’Connell) Helmets: This CCCSH co-sponsored bill requires youth under 18 to wear an approved helmet when skateboarding, riding a scooter or using rollerblades.

AB 1697 (Pavley) Rear Seat Requirement: This measure requires children under the age of six or less than 60 pounds to be in a child seat restraint in the rear seat of the vehicle with some specified exceptions. Signed into law.

Baby Bath Seats: Monitored the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s regulatory oversight of baby bath seats. Misuse of baby bath seats have resulted in over 100 infant deaths nationally. CCCSH, the Drowning Prevention Foundation and the Danny Foundation submitted letters in support of the Commission’s regulatory hearings. Signed.

SB 12 (Escutia) School Nutrition: This CCCSH supported bill prohibits the sale of certain unhealthy beverages and food items at all middle, junior high, and high schools, commencing July 1, 2007. The bill also stated that it was the intent of the Legislature that the governing board of a school district annually review its compliance with certain nutrition standards. Signed into law.

AB 2977 (Mullin) Swimming Pool and Spa Safety Act: Sponsored by CCCSH, this measure provided that whenever a building permit is issued for a new swimming pool at a private, single family home, the pool shall be equipped with at least one of 7 drowning prevention safety features instead of 6. Signed.

SB 793 (Harman) Public Swimming Pools: Requires lifeguards at public swimming pools to possess, as minimal qualifications, current certificates from the Red Cross or YMCA lifeguard training programs or equivalent qualifications, and to have been trained to administer first aid. Signed into law.

SB 183 (Lowenthal) Carbon Monoxide Detectors: This measure, co-sponsored by CCCSH, requires all owners of residential units to install carbon monoxide detectors. Signed.

SB 107 (Alquist) Wave Pools: This measure, supported by CCCSH, enacted the Wave Pool Safety Act. It requires wave pool operators to provide US Coast Guard-approved life vests for use by non-swimmers and any patron who requests one, and requires children under 48 inches in height to wear a life jacket. It also equires certain children to wear the vest in order to gain access to the pool, and requires an audible signal to be given before a breaking wave action occurs. Signed into law.

SB 193 (Evans) Booster Seat Bill: This bill, sponsored by CCCSH, extends the age a child must be retrained in a booster seat while riding in a motor vehicle from 6 to 8 years of age.