Rural Women New Zealand (RWNZ) and insurance company NZI have launched the NZI Rural Women NZ Business Awards for 2021.
"The latest call by Lake Rerewhakaaitu School principal Rick Whalley is the right one to keep our rural children and families safe - speed limits past rural schools should be the same as for their urban counterparts," says RWNZ education convenor Malvina Dick.
"RWNZ has long held the view that speed limits past rural schools are too high because it puts our children and families at risk of serious injury or even worse, death," she said.
Dick says that while the government's Road to Zero Strategy with its upper limit of 60km/h past rural schools is a start, that speed limit is too fast.
RWNZ is also calling for signs on buses warning passing drivers to travel at 20km if the bus is stationary and that all rural school buses have flashing lights which are activated by the driver when the bus is slowing to drop off or pick up children.
"However, first, on behalf of our rural communities, we would like the government to ensure that the speed limits around rural schools have an upper limit of 30-40km.
"Rural children deserve to be safe from injury or death on their way to and from school."