6-year-old lobbies Allentown City Council with important message

- A young Allentown girl is taking school bus safety into her own hands. She has lobbied a city council to get cameras on buses in order to catch drivers who don’t stop when the lights are flashing.

Don’t be fooled by her adorable face and personality. She’s articulate and outspoken. 

On a normal day, 6-year-old Olivia Clark-Ortiz is like an average kid. She loves playing with her toys.

“Super Girl’s cape is right here. I’ll put it on,” Olivia said. But, she is doing more than playing super heroes. She’s taking on the role of one.

“School bus cameras need to go on the bus and I vote yes,” she said as she spoke before Allentown City Council to try and gain their support in getting cameras on school buses.

“Every time cars pass the school bus, it makes me really angry and it feels like it’s really dangerous,” Olivia said before the council. Olivia is helping lead the cause alongside her mother, Amber. They’re fed up with watching drivers speed pass Olivia’s school bus when it’s stopped with flashing lights on and the stop sign arm out. 

“There’s three or four of us that stand in the middle of the street now to make sure that people don’t do that and we shouldn’t have to,” said Olivia’s mother, Amber Clark. Amber says she was excited when Olivia asked to address the council.

“She’s been witness to this and she lives this along with her friends on her bus and other buses every day,” said Amber. Amber has even recorded drivers passing school buses letting kids off.

“We wouldn’t be asking for cameras to help with enforcement if it wasn’t a problem,” she said. Olivia added, “This camera can catch cars that drive past. They can catch them.” Olivia seems to have won the support of the council.

“Everyone is supposed to stay safe so they can get off the bus, be safe, go home, do their homework and stuff like that,” Olivia said. She says she wasn’t nervous, but was happy when it was over.

“I felt like so excited that I got gummies at the end,” Olivia said.

Her mom says the school bus cameras legislation is awaiting some amendments before heading to the Senate floor for a final vote within two weeks.

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