WHO offers 'safe' tick

People will have another reason to come to Marlborough later this year when it gets official recognition from the World Health Organisation as a safe community.

The project began last year when a series of community meetings were held in Blenheim to highlight the work that needed to be done to make the region a safer place.

Transport safety, workplace and learning environment, alcohol and drugs, rural and outdoor safety, safe homes and community and family violence were the six key safety concerns identified in the community.

Six people were appointed to drive each of the key safety issues.

The project, named Safe and Sound @ the Top, is expected to get World Health Organisation (WHO) safe community accreditation by the end of the year.

Seven criteria need to be met in order for a region to qualify as a WHO Safe Community, including programmes that target high-risk groups and environments and programmes that promote safety for vulnerable groups.

Safer Communities co-ordinator Paul Johnson, who is also lead liaison contact for the WHO Safe and Sound @ the Top project, is stepping down from both roles at the end of the month, the Marlborough Safer Communities newsletter says. Mr Johnson could not be contacted yesterday.

The Marlborough Express