Yesterday Mayor Walsh went on WGBH radio and told pedestrians, cyclists, and all who use our sidewalks and streets, that “You’ve got to understand — cars are going to hit you…People need to be more cognizant of the fact that a car is a car.” Bostonians deserve so much better. The number of injuries on our roadways is rising, but victim blaming and excuse making is not going to get us the transportation network that we need, and it certainly isn’t going to make our streets safer.

When I walk the streets of this city, whether I’m in Dorchester, Roxbury, the South End, or the Fenway, I hear from residents that the city isn’t doing enough to reduce traffic, to make walking and cycling safer for everyone, and to transform our streets so that they enhance our great neighborhoods and communities. The Mayor’s instinct seems to be to justify the status quo by placing blame on those who get hurt – even as the numbers of injuries on our roadways are climbing year by year. His response is unacceptable. Our streets are designed and controlled by the city – the Mayor has the power to make changes that improve them. If he won’t embrace this challenge, then I will.

As your Mayor, I will put safety first. My Administration will take action, not just create a “plan” that sits on a shelf. You have my commitment to do the following:

  • Put people – whether they are in a car, a bus, walking, or on a bicycle – first when it comes to road design.
  • Invest in improved pedestrian infrastructure in every neighborhood in the city.
  • Expand Hubway to new neighborhoods so that everyone has access to a bicycle.
  • Expand separated bicycle facilities so that drivers and bicyclists both feel safer. Increase funding for transportation citywide.

It is unacceptable for Mayor Walsh to say that the city is doing all it can do. It is unacceptable for him to place the burden of crashes on people walking and biking. It is unacceptable for him to make excuses while more and more people are hurt on our roads.

Boston needs a Mayor who is going to demonstrate real leadership to create safer streets and implement Vision Zero – a campaign to end deaths on our streets. Mayor Walsh talks about this campaign a lot, but when you look at his actions, he’s falling far short.

When I’m Mayor, vulnerable road users won’t be blamed or dismissed – they will be listened to. Please join me in this effort. Because when we make our streets safer for all users, we build a better Boston.