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Becoming a Safe Community
Getting Started 

If you are considering the Safe Communities accreditation, contact our staff at  We will assist you throughout the process and can also connect you with one of our 25 designated Safe Communities for additional consultation and support.

Becoming a safe community is a collaborative and inclusive process:
  1. Seek out a lead agency. This can be one agency or an already established group of people invested in safety in your community. If one does not currently exist in your community, a small leadership group of interested individuals can be established to lead the initiative. Currently, community coalitions are being led by community health departments, police and fire departments, chambers of commerce, and university injury or health and safety departments/centers and others.
  2. Meet with advocates and committed individuals to explore how the Safe Community accreditation will benefit your community.
  3. Conduct an audit of safety and injury prevention programs already offered in the community.
  4. Bring partners in and discuss working together to seek accreditation.  All sectors of the community MUST be represented in your community coalition. This includes, but is not limited to, municipalities, health care (hospitals/health departments), schools, park districts, emergency services, police, fire, chambers of commerce, local businesses, not for profits, safety and community advocates, senior services, homeless services and faith-based institutions
  5. Review the application and see what yours community currently offers, and also what is not currently available and how your efforts can help fill those gaps.
If your group has any questions during this collaboration process, please contact us as
Application Process
There are two Safe Community accreditation options, National and International.  Safe Communities America is the accrediting body for the National Accreditation and the International Safe Communities Support Center in the US.  For information on the International accreditation, visit the WHO Collaborating Center on Community Safety Promotion
If you are considering the National Safe Communities accreditation, contact our staff at  We will assist you throughout the process and can connect you with one of our 25 designated Safe Communities for additional support.
The application process may take anywhere from 9-12 months to complete.

Step 1: Letter of Intent

The Letter of Intent must be signed by the Mayor (or similar function) and contain the following information: 
  • Name of community.
  • Contact persons (name, title, address, email, phone number).
  • Address of lead organization.
  • Organization number/ tax number

The letter should be sent at least 6 months before the planned accreditation. Email an electronic version of your Letter of Intent to and mail a copy of the Letter of Intent to:

Safe Communities America
National Safety Council
Attention: Director
1121 Spring Lake Drive
Itasca, IL 60143
Application Fees

The application fee for the Safe Communities accreditation is $1,200. An invoice will be generated after you submit your Letter of Intent. This fee is non-refundable.

Step 2: Application

Throughout the application process, we recommend that you contact Safe Communities America staff for assistance. Communities seeking National accreditation must meet the following four Areas of Competency, established by the National Safety Council:
  1. Sustained collaboration
  2. Understanding of community data
  3. Community programs that address intentional and unintentional injuries in the community
  4. Understanding and applying evaluation methods

Send the completed application, in a PDF format, to

Step 3: Site Visit
After reviewing your application, the Safe Communities America Certifying Center site reviewers will schedule a site visit with the community. The site visit is an opportunity to highlight your community and its safety promotion and injury prevention programs.

Step 4: Designation Ceremony
Celebrate Your Success! The Safe Communities Designation brings international recognition to your community’s safety and injury prevention efforts. A Safe Communities America Certifying Center representative will be present to award your community this honor.

Maintaining membership in Safe Communities America
  • Annual Reports: Communities that are part of the Safe Communities America Network will be required to submit an Annual Report. Directions for the Annual Report will be communicated to members of the Safe Communities America Network.
  • After Five Years - the Re-designation Process: Communities are required to submit applications for re-designation five years after their entry to the network. A Safe Communities America representative will provide additional information.
  • Annual Safe Communities America Conference:
    It is recommended that at least on representative from the community attends the annual Safe Communities America Networking conference held in the Fall of every year.

For more information, please email

  CONTACT US: 1121 Spring Lake Drive Itasca, IL 60143-3201     1-800-621-7615  
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