Bing Announces Partnership to Improve Safety in Detroit

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DETROIT – Detroit Mayor Dave Bing announced today that Detroit’s corporate community is supporting his Active and Safe Campaign with an $8 million contribution that will be used to replace the entire fleet of 23 ambulances for the Detroit Fire Department’s Emergency Medical Services Division and provide 100 new patrol cars for the Detroit Police Department.

 Bing was joined at today’s news conference by Roger Penske, founder and chairman of Penske Corp., and by other members of contributing corporations and foundations who are working in conjunction with the Downtown Detroit Partnership. Their efforts support the Active and Safe Campaign, which Mayor Bing launched with a goal of raising $60 million to support Detroit’s recreation centers and to provide the latest equipment, technology and training for Detroit’s first responders.

Eight corporate donors are giving a total of $8 million to acquire the new public safety vehicles. The donors are: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan; Chrysler Group LLC; Ford Motor Co.; General Motors Co.; Quicken Loans Inc.; The Kresge Foundation; Penske Corp.; and Platinum Equity LLC. In addition, FirstMerit Bank will serve as the financial partner in this collaborative project.

“I am delighted that Detroit’s corporate community has once again stepped up to improve not only public safety, but the lives and well-being of Detroit’s citizens,” Bing said. “This is an unprecedented collaboration between the business community and the Mayor’s Office to provide the highest level of emergency services to the people of Detroit.”

Corporate leaders wanted to show their support for Mayor Bing, the Active and Safe Campaign, and Detroit’s neighborhoods, Penske said.  “This is a great day for the City of Detroit. Through the extraordinary efforts of local business leaders and the Downtown Detroit Partnership, we are pleased to help Mayor Bing and the Police and Fire departments bring new police cruisers and EMS units to the streets of Detroit. These vehicles will enhance the visibility of the Police and Fire Departments’ efforts in the city and improve the safety and security of our neighborhoods.”

“This generous contribution from Detroit’s corporate leaders is a gift to the residents of Detroit, as well as to our EMS Division,” said Detroit Fire Commissioner Donald Austin. “After years of challenges with aging EMS units that rotate in and out of service, a brand new fleet of ambulances will allow us to provide a higher level of emergency services to Detroit’s citizens.”

Detroit Police Chief Chester L. Logan said an additional 100 police cars will greatly enhance the efforts of DPD officers who patrol the city’s streets. “Having access to 100 new vehicles will make our police force more responsive to citizens and will help lift the morale of our officers,” Logan said.  “We are grateful to the corporate leaders who made this possible.”   

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