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Biker of the week: Jean Andre Vallery of the Bicycle Messenger Emergency Fund

I ran into Jean Andre Vallery at Interbike back in 2007. A really interesting guy and dedicated to the BMEF. He set up this organization to give money to injured bike couriers who are demanded upon to perform a crucial service for the business community and aren’t given proper health insurance coverage.

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picture by Richard Masoner
Here is a Q and A I did with him a few weeks back.

Name, Age, Where you currently reside.
Jean Andre Vallery, 56, Jacumba, Ca. USA

What bike(s) do you own?
Litespeed Firenze, GT mountain bike, GT bowery Fixed gear, Trek 720?
touring,

Were you a courier? If so tell us a bit about working on a bicycle?
Yes, started my own company in Sarasota Florida. Loved making new customers and riding all day.
Company closed.

What is the BMEF and how did you get involved?
A 501 c3 that gives 300$ cash to any on the job injured bicycle messenger
worldwide, I was diagnosed with cancer and wanted to help and pay it forward.

How does the BMEF raise money? Has there been a lot of involvement from the
messenger community?
Donations, www.bicyclemessenger.org/help/userdonations.php

Who has received assistance from the BMEF? any memorable specific stories?
bicyclemessenger.org/help/userrequests.php these are requests but
some didn’t qualify.

Why are so many bike couriers not insured.
I haven’t a clue except the courier company’s that hire don’t classify
messengers as employees.

How has the messenger community responded to the BMEF?
Good, but could be better communication about the BMEF on the street.

Has this rise in popularity of messenger style racing, fashion, world and
national events helped bring attention to the working conditions of bike
messengers?
NO!!

Are there other organizations for couriers? How can couriers get more
organized? Any chance for a union?
Other BMA’s worldwide, register to help at the bmef,
http://bicyclemessenger.org/help/register.php

What kind of challenges have you faced with the BMEF and from couriers?
All kinds, too numerous to list

What is the current state of the BMEF and what are future plans?
http://bicyclemessenger.org/help/statusreports.php

How do people donate?
http://www.bicyclemessenger.org/help/donateform.php

Anything you wished I’d asked you?
Yes, I/ we need a international famous celebrity to be a spokesperson for
us. To stand up for us. Please whoever reads this we need assistance.

bmef4-copy

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