In response to the growing number of School Crossing Patrol (SCP) cuts taking place across Britain, a mother from Weymouth is extending her local campaign into a nationwide initiative.
Despite a petition carrying 10,000 names, Helen Toft says she has failed to convince Dorset County Council to reverse its decision to cut its SCP service.
But Ms Toft remains determined, saying: “I am now trying to take the campaign to a higher level by joining up all the points of protest around the country and encouraging everyone to make as much noise as possible.
“If the forests can be saved by 500,000 people protesting then the children should also be given that amount of support.”
Ms Toft has had an article about her campaign published in the Observer, and she expects another one to appear in the Sunday Telegraph.
Ms Toft added: “I have recently registered the campaign with ’38 Degrees’ which is the organisation responsible for co-ordinating the forests protests into an avalanche of public opinion. I want to do the same for the lollipop people.
“I would like to find an MP willing to take a Private Members’ Bill to the House of Commons to try and get the SCP service made into a statutory one rather than a concessionary one, but it is early days.”
James Gibson, press & PR officer for Road Safety GB, said: "In some areas change is unfortunately inevitable because of the spending cuts and Ms Toft is right to raise her concerns. Local authorities are faced with the challenge of how to prioritise any change to services.
"Road Safety GB supports the use of school crossing patrols where they can be demonstrated to serve road safety interests. Patrols play an important role in communities across the UK, helping thousands of children and adults cross safely every school day.
"Decisions to remove them should only be taken with due consideration of the implications for children’s safety and the possible effect on mode of travel to school.
"We also applaud Ms Toft’s ambition to make the service statutory."
Click here to visit Helen Toft’s blog.