The MSU Safety Network has been established to monitor current programs for effectiveness and identify new programs that are needed to improve the risks related to the safety and health and quality of life of students, faculty, and staff. A major function of the network is to provide a forum through which safety and health functions can be coordinated throughout the University.
The designation of MSU as a Safe Community started in 2008 when the President of the MSU Student Section of the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) attended the National Safety Congress and got information about the safe communities program. She brought the information back to the ASSE Student Section where it was considered something that the University should consider pursuing. In 2010 a proposal was written and staffed with the University administration proposing that the University pursue the designation.
After reviewing the proposal, the administration decided to proceed with achieving the designation and in October 2011, the MSU Safe Communities Task Force was formed and the first meeting held to gather information and start putting together the application. In May 2012 the application was forwarded to the Safe Communities America Support and Certifying Center and in October 2012, an on-site review team spent two days on-campus verifying the application and meeting with individuals. On December 7, 2012 the University was designated the 3rd university and the1st Public University in the world to receive this honor.
It also needs to be stressed that MSU did not get this designation just because we formed a task force and put together an application. This designation comes from the daily and hourly work done by everyone on the campus that has to do with safety and health in some way.
On Friday, December 7, 2012, MSU became the first public university and only the third university in the world to be formally designated an International Safe Community by the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre on Community Safety Promotion. MSU joins a network of more than 200 communities around the world that have met the organization's standards to promote safety and health initiatives. About 150 community members, staff, faculty, and students, participated in the prestigious ceremony that was held in the Murray Room at the CFSB Center in conjunction with the Murray-Calloway County Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting.
The Chamber of Commerce Director, Lance Armstrong, made introductory remarks and introduced David Fender, co-chair of the MSU Safe Community Task Force who emceed the event. Donna Stein Harris, the National Safety Council representative lauded MSU's remarkable efforts and achievement in maintaining a vibrant and healthy community and presented the university with a Safe Community plaque commemorating the occasion and MSU's membership in the Safe Communities America, International Safe Communities and the Pan-America Safe Communities.
President Randy Dunn recognized the honor bestowed upon the university and reaffirmed its commitment to Safe Communities and to the continued improvement of safety and health at MSU. Donna Stein-Harris and Randy Dunn signed the Safe Communities Agreement that induces MSU to "implement an ongoing programme of injury control. [The] initiative will cover the whole community including people in all age groups, all environments and all situations." Steven L. Beshear, Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, sent a video message recognizing MSU for this achievement and Steve Sparrow the Coordinator of Kentucky Safety and Prevention and Alliance Network, read a proclamation by the Governor declaring Friday, December 7, 2012 as Safe Community Day in Kentucky.
Governor's Proclamation (pdf)
Governor Beshear speaking via video
President Dunn and Donna Stein-Harris Signing the Safe Communities Agreement
President Randy Dunn, Debora Biggs, Safe Communities Reviewer, David Fender, Co-chair of MSU Safe Communities Task Force, Genia McKee, Coordinator, Kentucky Safe Communities, Don Robertson, Co-chair of MSU Safe Communities Task Force, Donna Stein-Harris, National Safety Council, Melissa Kopecky, ASSE President that started the effort, Steve Sparrow, Program Coordinator, KY Safety and Prevention Alignment Network