NSC Awards First International Safe Community Designation to USC
On Sept. 15, the National Safety Council's Safe Communities America welcomed the University of Southern California into the International Safe Community network. This designation recognizes the university's efforts in addressing the leading safety concerns facing its students, faculty, staff, and area residents. USC, the first university to receive this designation, is better positioned to prevent injuries and deaths campus-wide through a collaborative approach.
"We recognize our duties and responsibilities as employees of USC and members of the Trojan family to be vigilant in our quest to sustain a healthy, safe and productive environment for the greater USC community," said Charles E. Lane, associate senior vice president for career and protective services at the university.
Referencing USC-specific injury data, the task force created through this initiative is working to create and improve programs to cover all risk areas. Levels of the university--including administration, faculty, students, facilities, and fire protection, and law enforcement services--that may not have worked together closely in the past came together to develop the safety plan, which has been certified by the World Health Organization’s Collaborating Center for Community Safety Promotion.
"USC will be a leader in the Safe Communities America movement as more universities understand the value this designation provides. USC now has a process to address safety concerns through many perspectives in the future," said Donna Stein-Harris, director of the NSC Safe Communities America initiative.
USC was awarded the International Safe Community designation based on six criteria:
- A cross-sectional partnership responsible for the promotion of community safety
- Long-term sustainable programs for all genders, ages, environments and situations
- Programs targeting high-risk groups and environments
- Programs documenting the frequency and causes of injuries
- Evaluation measures to assess programs and the effects of change
- Ongoing participation in national and international Safe Communities networks
"The cooperative efforts to make the community safer at USC have been impressive. It is exciting to add institutions of higher education into the network of Safe Communities," said Janet Froetscher, NSC president and CEO.
USC is the eleventh community in the United States and the first in California to become an International Safe Community. The designation process was overseen by the Safe Communities Canada Certifying Center. The National Safety Council served as a mentor to USC throughout the application process as an Affiliate Safe Communities America Support Center. For more information, visit www.safecommunitiesamerica.org.