I spent three days this week as active living expert Mark Fenton’s assistant, doing presentations and walkabouts in three different Chicago Southland suburbs. I want to leave you with this one of many, many profound takeaways from Mark’s work:
There is no cholera epidemic in America as there is in Haiti because we made policy-level decisions to ensure clean water and effective sewage removal for every home in our communities.
The epidemic facing us—soon to supplant tobacco as our most serious health risk—is inactivity. And just as cholera, dysentery, typhoid, etc. cluster and spread without adequate water and sewer infrastructure, so are the diseases of inactivity—including heart disease and Type II diabetes in CHILDREN, for god’s sake—spreading in Illinois communities without connecting sidewalks and trails.
It’s well past the time to have a different conversation about trails for Illinois.