I wrote this post as part of my participation in a blog tour for Latina Mom Bloggers on behalf of the Allstate Foundation and received compensation to thank me for taking the time to participate. However, all opinions expressed are my own.
Recently I attended the Allstate Teleconference conducted by The Allstate Foundation. The focus was on a national survey specifically on Hispanic teen drivers and parents. Now I have a 5 year old and a 1 year old so I have some time ahead of me before I actually need to begin worrying about them becoming teen drivers. However, I would be lying if I told you that it doesn’t already cross my mind and bring me concern when I think about it. Part of me has even thought that maybe I won’t encourage them to drive until they are 18 years old, that way their maturity level will be higher. Yet with Allstate I have already learned that this delay in their driving can actually do more harm than good to them as drivers and I will get more into this fact in a bit.
The Allstate Foundation’s research revealed that there is a lack of resources available for parents in Spanish and they set out to change that, which they did! Allstate created the Vamos Hispanic Resources site and you can check it out at http://www.AllstateFoundation.org/vamos-espanol or you can get the same valuable resources in English at http://www.AllstateFoundation.org/vamos!
The 2014 Vamos Infographic shows some very important and interesting facts. For instance, 7 out of 10 Hispanic parents are unaware that car crashes are the #1 killer of teen drivers. Also, 17% of Hispanic teens have a full license in comparison to 40% of white teen drivers who do. See the full Infographic below!
So one of the biggest things I learned at the Allstate Teleconference with Jorge Monsivais who is an Allstate Agent and a father of a teenage driver is the importance of the Graduated driver. This is a drivers licensing system that is used to slowly expose teens to the driving experience and phase them into full driving privileges. Since laws vary by state, the licensing process can be confusing for parents and teens. Therefore, The Allstate Foundation created videos to help make it easier to understand in a visual, fun way.
The most eye-opening thing that I learned about the Graduating Driver’s license is that if you wait for your teen to turn 18 years old before allowing them to get their license then they will completely miss out on the Graduated license, which truly can be a life-saving process. Since the Graduated license was developed to safely transition teen drivers slowly into independent driving, rather than just giving them a license and then saying, “Adios! You’re on your own now,” you can see the importance in not having our children skip this critical learning phase. This is why I have now thrown out the thought of having my children wait until they are 18 years old to get their licenses.
Allstate has also developed a Parent-Teen Driving Agreement, which does an excellent job of opening up the conversation about safe and responsible driving with our teens. It is also tailored per state, so that it applies your specific state laws within the agreement.
The Allstate Foundation’s website has endless resources for you and your teen’s benefit. I encourage all of my readers to go and check it out and please feel free to leave me any questions or comments below too!