1 See: https://www.who.int/violence_injury_ prevention/road_safety_status/2018/en/ 2 See: Khavi Bhalla et al ‘Effect of Road Safety Interventions on Traffic Injuries Globally’ 19th March 2018 https://www.icorsi.org/scientificpapers-international-sym 3 See: https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/ press-release/2018/01/09/road-deaths-andinjuries-hold-back-economic-growth-indeveloping-countries 4 See: http://thecommonwealth.org/chogm 5 See: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/ post2015/transformingourworld 6 See: http://www.worldbank.org/en/programs/ global-road-safety-facility 7 See: https://www.unece.org/unrstf/home.html
1.INTRODUCTION 1.1 Every year in Commonwealth countries around 212,000 road traffic fatalities are reported and millions more are seriously injured. Accounting for underreporting the WHO Global Status Report on Road Safety 20181 estimates that road deaths annually across the Commonwealth exceed 500,000. The WHO also confirms that today road traffic injuries are the leading worldwide cause of death for children and young people aged 5-29 years. This is a major challenge for the Commonwealth as over 60% of the populations of its countries are under 30 years old. 1.2 The road safety performance of the 53 Commonwealth member states is very diverse. Road crash fatality rates range from 3 to 35 per 100,000 population. This reflects the fact that the better performing countries have for the last thirty to forty years systematically applied policies to make roads, vehicles, and road users much safer. To narrow the wide performance gap between Commonwealth countries, it is essential for those with higher fatality rates to develop and consistently apply road safety countermeasures of their own2. The absence of such a concerted effort means that today the Commonwealth suffers a fatality rate of 20.9 per 100,000 population which is higher than the global average of 18.2 per 100,000 population. And, unfortunately, in nearly all Commonwealth countries death and injury rates are currently rising rather than falling. 1.3 This surely unacceptable given that road trauma is both predictable and preventable. In addition to the tragic loss of lives and health, it also results in huge social and economic losses that could be significantly reduced in all Commonwealth countries. According to the World Bank, on average a 10% reduction in road traffic deaths raises per capita real GDP by 3.6% 2
over a 24-year horizon3. For too long, however, road injury prevention has been overlooked as an issue of sustainable development. 1.4 Fortunately, this has recently changed as road safety is now recognised as a major issue of public health and sustainable development. Significantly, road injury prevention has been included in the United Nations (UN) 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030)4. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for ‘Good Health and Well Being’ and for ‘Sustainable Cities and Communities’ both refer to road safety and have specific targets for road injury prevention (targets 3.6 & 11.2)5. These important commitments are, of course, integrated with other transport related SDGs to improve air quality, reduce carbon emissions and encourage more sustainable forms of human mobility. There have also been efforts to increase investment in capacity building in road injury prevention though two funding mechanisms, the World Bank Global Road Safety Facility6 and the recently established UN Road Safety Trust Fund7. 1.5 These initiatives represent the strongest ever global mandate for action to reduce the number of people being killed and seriously injured on the world’s roads. However, to date the Commonwealth has not fully engaged with the issue despite the negative impact that road trauma has on the citizens and economies of every single one of its member countries. It would, therefore, be highly appropriate for road safety to be included on the agenda of the next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) to be held in Kigali Rwanda, on 22-27th June 2020.
I am proud to serve as the Patron of the Commonwealth Road Safety Initiative (CRSI). The purpose of the CRSI is to raise the profile of road safety on the agenda of the Commonwealth and encourage stronger action by its 53 members countries to reduce traffic deaths and serious injuries. Every year over 210,000 people are killed in road crashes in Commonwealth countries and many more experience life changing injuries. Children and young people, accounting for over 60% of the population of the Commonwealth, are especially at risk. Based on the Commonwealthâ€™s current priorities for youth, health, and sustainable development, the CRSI aims to halve the number of people killed or seriously injured in a new decade of action for road safety to 2030. Bringing together experts and practitioners from across the Commonwealth, the Initiative will encourage implementation of effective, evidence based, policies that can save lives.
Even though the road safety performance of many Commonwealth country differs widely, they all face a common challenge to prevent a rising tide of road crash injury. As demand for road transport increases the task of improving road safety becomes ever more urgent. We need a combination of safer roads, safer road users, and safer vehicles, all managed together in a road transport system that is safer and sustainable by design. And with road traffic injuries now the leading cause of death for children and young adults aged 5-29 years, I strongly believe that road safety must be also become a major priority in child and adolescent health. We know that most traffic deaths and serious injuries are predictable and preventable. The Commonwealth is a unique forum that is well placed to share expertise and to foster partnerships for road injury prevention. That is why I believe the Commonwealth in the decade ahead can and should become a world leader in road safety. HRH PRINCE MICHAEL OF KENT GCVO 3
2.AGENDA 2030, THE 3.SETTING A COMMONWEALTH, COMMONWEALTH AND ROAD SAFETY TARGET FOR ROAD CASUALTY REDUCTION 2.1 Since their adoption in 2015, the Commonwealth has strongly supported the SDGs and Agenda 2030. At the 2018 CHOGM in London, a Communique ‘Towards a Common Future8’ was adopted that “reiterated their commitment to achieving the healthrelated goals of Agenda 2030, particularly Goal 3”. The Communique also highlighted the importance of the Commonwealth’s emphasis on youth; and the parallel Youth Forum called on member states “to adequately address emerging issues” of health and well-being in its Declaration9. The Communique also reaffirmed the Commonwealth’s proud history “acting to strengthen good governance and the rule of law”. These commitments are all highly relevant to the promotion of effective road injury prevention in Commonwealth countries.
2.2 Given this established mandate, it would now seem appropriate and timely for the Commonwealth to include improving road safety in its work promoting health, youth, good governance, and sustainable development. What are the arguments in favour? Firstly, action to encourage Commonwealth countries to adopt effective road safety policies and projects will help reduce death and serious injury on their roads especially among children and young people. Secondly, the Commonwealth can demonstrate global leadership in promoting partnerships that encourage best practices in road injury prevention. 2.3 On 19-20 February 2020, the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety will be held in Stockholm, Sweden10 to assess current progress in road safety and set new priorities for 2030. This will be followed by a UN General Assembly debate ‘On Improving Global Road Safety’ that will adopt a resolution based on the outcome of the Stockholm conference11. Together, these important events will provide a new framework for action in the decade ahead and give Commonwealth countries a powerful platform to show their commitment to collaboration on road safety. This could be done, for example, by setting a Commonwealth target for road casualty reduction.
3.1 Setting ambitious casualty reduction targets has long been recognized as an effective policy to improve road safety. A growing body of research from the early 1990s and 2000s showed that countries with targets have generally performed better than those without. This evidence is well summarized in the United Nations (UN) report ‘Improving Global Road Safety – Setting Regional and National Road Traffic Casualty Reduction Targets’ published by the UN Regional Commissions in 201012. The UN identified several reasons why road safety targets have proved to be beneficial: • Setting targets communicates the importance of road safety. • Targets motivate stakeholders and increase accountability for achieving results. • Targets convey the message that the Government is serious about reducing road casualties. • Sub-national targets widen the sense of ownership by creating greater accountability, establishing more partnerships and generating more action. • Targets raise media and public awareness and motivate politicians to support policy changes and to provide resources. 3.2 Target setting has also become increasingly viewed as an essential element of the ‘Safe System’ approach to road injury prevention. For example, in 201613 the International Transport Forum (ITF) published ‘Zero Road Deaths and Serious Injuries: Leading A Paradigm Shift to a Safe System’ which called for ‘Vision Zero’ goals to be underpinned with concrete operational targets. This combination of aspirational ‘top down’ and empirical ‘bottom up’ target setting, encourages the use of safety performance indicators to track intermediate outcomes in support of the overall casualty reduction goal. It is associated with ‘Management by Objectives’ model of public policy decision making and the expectation that targets should be SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time limited. As the ITF’s 2016 report strongly emphasized “for short interim
targets to be effective in demonstrating the legitimacy of a larger vision it is critical that they are realistic and achievable”. It is also important to stress that setting targets is not in conflict with the ambition to achieve a ‘Vision Zero’ world entirely free from road traffic fatalities and serious injuries. Target setting provides a benchmark for progress but should not be viewed as the final goal. 3.3 Over the last decade the UN has used voluntary aspirational targets for injury prevention as part of an unprecedented effort to improve global road safety. The first global ministerial conference on road safety was held in Moscow 19-20 November 200914 and the following year a Decade of Action for Road Safety was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly with the goal to “stabilize and then reduce” the predicted increase in road traffic fatalities15. This was further strengthened when the SDGs were unanimously adopted in by Heads of Government in New York in September 2015 with a target (3.6) to halve the number of global traffic deaths and injuries by 2020. This was subsequently endorsed by the 2nd Global High-Level Conference on Road Safety held in Brasilia on 18-19 November 201516 and by the UN General Assembly on 15 April 201617. 3.4 To support this global agenda, the WHO has issued ‘Save LIVES: a road safety technical package’ which contains an evidence-based inventory of priority interventions based on Speed management, Leadership, Infrastructure design and improvement, Vehicle safety standards, Enforcement of traffic laws and post-crash Survival18. The WHO strongly asserts that if countries take decisive action to implement their recommendations significant injury reduction will follow. Unfortunately, however, the latest WHO’s Global Status Report on Road Safety shows that many countries worldwide have yet to implement effective road safety polices and legislation. To serve as a catalyst for action to overcome this, the WHO has also facilitated the adoption of 12 voluntary global performance targets for road safety risk factors19 which were welcomed by the UN General Assembly in April 201820. They provide a global framework of safety performance indicators that together could contribute to a substantial reduction in road deaths and serious injuries by 2030. 3.5 Action of this kind is urgently needed because the current road safety performance of UN Member States is not sufficient for SDG 3.6 to be achieved by 2020. The WHO’s Global Status Report on Road Safety 2018 shows that the number of road traffic deaths continues to climb, reaching 1.35 million in 201621. At best it can be said that the rates of death relative to the size of the world’s population has stabilized in recent years. This does confirm, however, that the Decade of Action has so far at least accomplished 50% of its mission.
Stabilising road traffic deaths in the context of rising levels of population and motorisation represents a significant achievement. Sadly, however, the reduction half of the Decade’s task remains unfinished business. It is, therefore, likely that the 3rd Global Ministerial Meeting will propose an extension of the target to 2030. This target has already been adopted by the European Union, following a Meeting of Transport Ministers held in Valetta during the Maltese Presidency of the European Council in 2017 and then included in the European Commission’s new 2030 road safety strategy announced in May 201822. 3.6 It would, therefore, be a powerful demonstration of commitment to road injury prevention if the Commonwealth were to endorse its own target to halve road deaths and serious injuries by 2030. At the 2018 CHOGM in London, the Commonwealth adopted a target to halve incidence of malaria by 2023 and to accelerate global efforts to achieve a 90% reduction by 2030. This, of course, is a very worthwhile action consistent with the Commonwealth’s agenda for public health. But it also serves as a precedent for a similar commitment to a casualty reduction target for road safety that could be adopted at the next CHOGM in Kigali, Rwanda. To halve road deaths and serious injuries in the decade ahead would be ambitious but achievable for Commonwealth countries, contributing to the achievement of the health-related goals of Agenda 2030, particularly Goal 3.
8 See: http://thecommonwealth.org/sites/default/files/inline/ CHOGM_2018_Communique.pdf 9 See: http://thecommonwealth.org/sites/default/files/inline/ CYF_2018_Declaration.pdf 10 See: www.roadsafetysweden.com 11 See previous UN General Assembly resolution on road safety adopted in April 2018: https://www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc. asp?symbol=A/RES/72/271&referer=/english/&Lang=E 12 Improving Global Road Safety: Setting Regional and National Road Traffic Casualty Reduction Targets - Report and Recommendations. UNECE http://www.unece.org/index.php?id=17593 13 Zero Road Deaths and Serious Injuries. ITF 2016 http://www.itf-oecd. org/zero-road-deaths 14 http://www.who.int/roadsafety/ministerial_conference/en/ 15 https://www.who.int/roadsafety/about/resolutions/A-RES-62-244_ EN.pdf?ua=1 16 http://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/road_traffic/ Brasilia_Declaration/en/ 17 http://www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/ RES/70/260 18 See: https://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/publications/ road_traffic/save-lives-package/en/ 19 https://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/road_ traffic/12GlobalRoadSafetyTargets.pdf?ua=1 20 https://www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/ RES/72/271&referer=/english/&Lang=E 21 See: https://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/road_safety_ status/2018/en/ 22 https://eur-lex.europa.eu/resource.html?uri=cellar%3A0e8b694e59b5-11e8-ab41-01aa75ed71a1.0003.02/DOC_1&format=PDF
4.PROMOTING COMMONWEALTH COLLABORATION ON ROAD SAFETY
highlighted in the 2018 CHOGM Communique when the leader’s “further affirmed the Commonwealth’s convening power as an enabler of experience sharing”. The opportunity now is to unlock this potential and to stimulate stronger engagement with road safety recognizing that some Commonwealth countries have exemplary experience in effective road injury reduction.
4.2 The Commonwealth has a justified reputation in promoting effective collaboration and this was
4.3 To encourage such collaboration on road safety it will be necessary, however, to obtain recognition of the issue by the Commonwealth itself. This will be best secured by including the subject on the agenda of the next CHOGM to be hosted by the Government of Rwanda in June 2020. Given the Commonwealth’s existing commitment to Agenda 2030 and to Goal 3 for Health in particular, it would be entirely appropriate for road safety to be included in this part of the Kigali CHOGM’s deliberations. The Heads of Government would then be able to take note of the recommendations of the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety and the subsequent UN General Assembly resolution to be adopted in April 2020. These declarations can provide a well-grounded policy context for the Commonwealth’s own recognition of the importance of reducing road deaths and serious injuries by its member states. This would then ensure that road safety is given the recognition it deserves in the Commonwealth’s existing work promoting health, youth, and sustainable development.
5.YOUTH, THE COMMONWEALTH AND ROAD SAFETY
speed enforcement to protect vulnerable road users, and effective road safety education & training. Such initiatives are also closely linked to other priorities in sustainable transport such as improving air quality, reducing carbon emissions, and promoting healthy lifestyles. Neglect of these issues are estimated to result in the deaths worldwide of 350,000 children and adolescents each year24.
4.1 Among Commonwealth countries there is considerable road safety expertise and greater scope than ever before to encourage implementation of the policy measures supported by the WHO, the World Bank and the UN. With road safety now included in Agenda 2030 there are potential partnerships involving civil society, parliamentarians, local government, the police and rescue services, the private sector, universities, and youth organisations, that can support the efforts of Commonwealth member states to reduce their number of traffic fatalities and serious injuries. It is also important to recall that Agenda 2030 has a specific goal for implementation with an SDG target 17 to mobilize multi-stakeholder partnerships.
5.1 Given that road crashes are now the leading cause of death of children and young people worldwide, it is important that improving road safety be included in the Commonwealth’s Youth Programme. Unfortunately, however, the subject was not mentioned in the Communique of the 9th Commonwealth Youth Ministers Meeting held in Kampala, Uganda in 2017, or in the 11th Commonwealth Youth Forum Declaration during the London CHOGM in 2018. 5.2 There is a strong agenda of potential youth programmes for road safety, for example, by supporting the safe routes to school campaign of the Child Health & Mobility Initiative23, better road design & 6
5.3 The Commonwealth can play a leading role in tackling this tragic waste of young lives. To ensure that this happens it would be valuable to discuss safe and sustainable transport at the next Commonwealth Youth Forum and at the Commonwealth Youth Minister’s meeting to be held in Jamaica in 2021. During the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety in Stockholm in 2020, a global youth assembly will be organised by Youth for Road Safety25. There is, therefore, a great opportunity for Commonwealth Youth organisations to contribute to this important event and then to deliver a strong message to the Kigali CHOGM about the need for action to make the Commonwealth’s transport systems safe, clean, and sustainable.
6.COMMONWEALTH LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND ROAD SAFETY 6.1 Road safety and sustainable transport issues are major concerns of local government and cities across the world where growing urbanisation is a major challenge. This was clearly recognised in Agenda 2030 which includes a target 11.2 that calls for “access to safe, affordable, accessible and sustainable transport systems for all, improving road safety, notably by expanding public transport, with special attention to the needs of those in vulnerable situations, women, children, persons with disabilities and older persons”.
through the exchange of best practice in promoting safer and more sustainable transport. At its most recent bi-annual conference held in Valetta in Malta in November 2017, there was a strong commitment to promoting SDG related partnerships and road safety is an obvious candidate for this approach29. It would, therefore, be timely to include road injury prevention among the issues to be discussed at the next meeting CLGF meeting to be held in Asia in 2020.
6.2 Strongly reinforcing SDG 11.2 was the adoption of the New Urban Agenda (NUA)26 at the United Nations Habitat III conference, held in Quito, Ecuador in October 2016. The NUA, inter alia, calls on governments to “adopt, implement and enforce policies and measures to actively protect and promote pedestrian safety and cycling mobility” and measures that “to improve road safety and integrate it into sustainable mobility and transport infrastructure planning and design. Accompanied by awareness raising initiatives, and the promotion of a safe system approach called for in the United Nations Decade of Action for road safety, with special attention to the needs of all women and girls, as well as children and youth, older persons and persons with disabilities, and those in vulnerable situations.” 6.3 In support of the NUA, around the world many cities and local government bodies are promoting innovative approaches to sustainable transport which prioritise road injury prevention especially for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and children. For example, the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety27 is supporting a range of city-based projects promoting speed enforcement, traffic calming, motorcycle helmet use, and better public transport. Shifting the priority focus from cars to pedestrians is also a common theme through improved street design28. As with projects relating to youth, there are strong synergies with sustainable transport projects promoting clean and safe mobility that are highly applicable to all Commonwealth countries. 6.4 Given the Commonwealth Local Government Forum’s (CLGF) existing support for the SDGs and the NUA there is considerable scope to include road safety within their work strengthening local government
23 See: www.childhealthinitiative.org 24 See: https://www.childhealthinitiative.org/blog/2018/may/call-forurgent-action-as-fatal-disconnect-in-global-health-policies-fails-childvictims-of-road-traffic 25 See: www.youthforroadsafety.org 26 See: http://habitat3.org/the-new-urban-agenda 27 See: https://www.bloomberg.org/program/public-health/roadsafety/ 28 See: https://nacto.org/2016/10/13/nacto-global-designing-citiesinitiative-release-global-street-design-guide/ 29 See: http://www.clgf.org.uk/
7.COMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENTARIANS AND ROAD SAFETY 7.1 Political leadership is a vital ingredient to successful road safety policies and Parliamentarians across the Commonwealth have a crucial role to play. They can help to formulate effective national road safety policies and legislation; they can support adequate levels of funding for road injury prevention; they can ensure accountability of governments and public authorities to meet road safety targets; and they can engage with the community to help make roads safe for all those they were elected to serve. 7.2 Many Commonwealth countries today still lack essential basics of road safety legislation such as laws requiring use of seat belts & motorcycle helmets, to prevent drink driving, and speeding. Minimum safety standards are also required for both used and new vehicles. Better road design and management is beneficial
for all, but especially important for vulnerable road users, including pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists that now account for over half of global road traffic deaths. 7.3 To improve the quality and effectiveness of road safety polices and legislation across Commonwealth countries, there is scope for bringing together parliamentarians, and parliamentary staff to exchange best practices. The task of implementing effective road safety policies and laws is complex and many countries have important experience to share. This would be a natural role for the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association which could take a lead in organising workshops on legislative topics related to road safety and focussing on safe and sustainable transport as a theme for a future session at its annual conference.
8.COMMONWEALTH RESEARCH COLLABORATION ON ROAD SAFETY 8.1 Good evidence-based policy making is essential for effective road injury prevention. This requires reliable data collection, research and analysis. Commonwealth countries need to assess the characteristics of their own road safety performance and then develop road safety action plans related to their own priorities. Accurate injury surveillance systems and using internationally recognised definitions (such as the rule counting a road fatality as a person dying within 30 days of the incident) are essential to avoid under reporting and thereby ensure that the true costs of road trauma are understood. In this way, effective policy measures can be chosen, adequately resourced, and successfully implemented. 8
8.2 Around the Commonwealth there is a large community of world class road safety researchers and professional practitioners. Some of the worldâ€™s leading universities and research laboratories working on road injury prevention are based in Commonwealth countries. These could form the basis of a Commonwealth network of road safety collaboration centres. These can promote shared research and skills training. Capacity building in management systems for safe and sustainable transport is an urgent necessity around the world and the Commonwealth has the potential to be a leader in this field. But to maximise this valuable resource requires recognition by the Commonwealth of both the road safety challenges it faces and the expertise it has available to tackle the issue.
9.THE PRIVATE SECTOR AND COMMONWEALTH ROAD SAFETY 9.1 Road injury prevention is a shared responsibility and cannot be achieved by government action alone. The private sector is both a major provider and user of transport and, therefore, has the potential to significantly contribute to reducing levels of death and injury on the road. 9.2 Improving occupational road safety, including when travelling to and from work, can contribute significantly to achieving national road injury prevention targets. The importance of a safe working environment is also recognised in Agenda 2030 in SDG 8.8. For many businesses, driving for work purposes is the greatest risk faced by their employees. Both to meet their duty of care to their workforce and to promote their company’s productivity, there is a strong imperative to reduce the occurrence of crashes through implementing effective road safety management systems such as ISO 3900130, and focus on improved fleet safety management. Evidence shows that investment in such road safety initiatives
10.ROAD SAFETY AND THE 2020 CHOGM 10.1 Good governance is a prerequisite of effective road injury prevention. Key features of good governance are transparency, accountability, and promotion of the rule of law. These are all necessary attributes for successful implementation of programmes to reduce road trauma. Transparent use of accurate road injury data, for example, that can be shared with affected communities, is essential to the development and implementation of effective road safety counter measures. 10.2 Promoting compliance with road traffic rules is also a critical feature of the safe system approach. These include requirements that are preconditions for access to road networks such as driver & vehicle licensing, and inspection & maintenance, as well as ‘rules of the road’ such as respecting speed limits, wearing seat belts & motorcycle helmets, and avoiding impaired or distracted
typically results in cost savings through improved productivity, decreased insurance premiums, vehicle maintenance, fleet damage and loss of staff availability due to crash related injuries. This is good business practice but will also contribute to better road safety outcomes that can benefit countries across the Commonwealth. 9.3 Many companies based in Commonwealth countries are already leaders in promoting best practice in road safety management and will actively support the achievement of a target to halve road deaths and serious injuries by 2030. Such companies are familiar with the ‘Management by Objectives’ methodology and could readily apply such a target to their own business operations. It would, therefore, be greatly welcomed if the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council could endorse the target and encourage private sector engagement in a partnership approach to road injury prevention.
driving; However, the effectiveness of road traffic law is highly dependent on the quality of enforcement, which can be seriously undermined by corruption. Unfortunately, this is a common problem among road traffic police in many countries who may, often as a result of poor employment conditions and lack of training, accept bribes to overlook traffic offences. This undermines public trust and effective enforcement of road safety rules. 10.3 In 2016, the Commonwealth hosted an anticorruption conference in London and has assisted governments to tackle systemic corruption by supporting the sharing of best practices, training and capacitybuilding and policy research. These activities are another way in which the Commonwealth is supporting Agenda 2030 which includes a target to “substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all its forms” in SDG 16. There are effective ways to promote anti-corruption among authorities responsible for applying road traffic rules and it would, therefore, be beneficial for this to be recognised as a relevant aspect of the Commonwealth’s work, especially as good governance and the rule of law are expected to be among the major themes of the next CHOGM. 30 See: https://www.iso.org/standard/44958.html
31 See: http://thecommonwealth.org/about-us 32 See: http://www.towardszerofoundation.org/ about/
11.ROAD SAFETY AND THE 2020 CHOGM 11.1 To mobilize the potential action and partnerships described in this memorandum will require high level commitment by the Commonwealth at their biannual leader’s meeting. That is why it is so important for road safety to be included among the topics discussed at the next CHOGM in Kigali, Rwanda. The preparation of the draft Heads of Government declaration is managed by the Commonwealth Secretariat but based on the expressed wishes of its member states. This preparatory process starts in September with key issues being identified by the Commonwealth Secretariat for inclusion on the 2020 CHOGM agenda. It is imperative, therefore, that member states that are concerned about road safety request its inclusion – as a subject relevant especially to SDG Goal 3 - as early as possible before the Kigali meeting. 11.2 Once on the agenda, it will facilitate the adoption of specific recommendations on road safety in the Communique from the Kigali CHOGM. Just a few sentences would encourage the creation of new
partnerships for road safety building on commitment and expertise already available within Commonwealth countries. By recognising road safety at the next CHOGM there is no suggestion that this will result in a dilution of effort from existing areas of Commonwealth action; rather it will help attract new resources and energy to Commonwealth collaboration in this hitherto largely unrecognised burden affecting so many people, particularly the young who represent the future of all Commonwealth countries. 11.3 It is also vital and valuable that Commonwealth countries play a full part in next year’s 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety and at the UN General Assembly debate ‘On Improving Global Road Safety’. These important events provide an opportunity for the Commonwealth to demonstrate leadership and commitment to the road safety related SDGs and in doing so send a powerful message to the rest of the world that death and injury on our roads is an unacceptable price to pay for our essential mobility.
12.THE ROLE OF THE COMMONWEALTH ROAD SAFETY INITIATIVE & CONCLUSION 12.1 The Commonwealth Road Safety Initiative (CRSI), is hosted by the Towards Zero Foundation (a UK registered charity) under the patronage of His Royal Highness, Prince Michael of Kent GCVO. The CRSI has brought together a distinguished panel of experts – see below - to develop a framework for Commonwealth action on road safety aiming to halve road deaths and serious injuries by 2030. 12.2 The CSRI schedule of activities is as follows: • Launch of the CRSI expert report at the Royal Society for Arts in London on 9th December 2020; • Host a High-Level Side Event on 20th February 2020 at the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety in Stockholm for Ministers and delegations from Commonwealth countries; • Host a Side Event for Commonwealth Missions to the UN during the General Assembly debate ‘On Improving Global Road Safety’ due to be held in April 2020; • Host a CRSI side event at the Kigali CHOGM in June 2020 in association with the University of Global Health Equity, Rwanda. 12.3 The Commonwealth has a great opportunity to reduce road deaths and serious injuries among its member countries and also play a leading role in global road safety. To encourage this, the CRSI would like to highlight the following: • Commonwealth countries have a shared challenge to
• • •
reduce road deaths and serious injuries; Road traffic crashes are the leading global cause of death of children and young people; Road safety is now a recognised priority within Agenda 2030 goals for Health and Cities; The WHO, the World Bank, and the UN have developed policy recommendations and new investment mechanisms to promote capacity building and effective road injury prevention.
12.4 The CRSI is, therefore, hoping to encourage likeminded Commonwealth member states: • To play a prominent role in next year’s 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety & the UN General Assembly debate ‘On Improving Global Road Safety’; • To support the inclusion of road safety on the agenda of the next CHOGM in Rwanda in June 2020; • To set a Commonwealth target to halve road deaths and serious injuries by 2030; • To encourage new multi-stakeholder partnerships in Commonwealth collaboration that share expertise and best practice in effective road injury prevention; • To support the inclusion of road safety on the agenda of the next Commonwealth Local Government Forum to be held in Asia in 2020; • To support the inclusion of road safety on the agenda of the next Commonwealth Youth Minister’s meeting to be held in Jamaica in 2021. 11
United Republic of Tanzania
Papua New Guinea
Trinidad and Tobago
Antigua and Barbuda
Kiribati United Kingdom 14
4.4 3.1 2.8
Estimated death rates for the 45 Commonwealth countries, ranging from less than 3 to more than 35 per 100,000 population.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THE CRSI CONTACT: Ms Jessica Truong, CRSI Coordinator by email at email@example.com
WEBSITE www.commonwealthrsi.org SOCIAL twitter.com/commonwealthrsi facebook.com/commonwealthrsi instagram.com/commonwealthrsi 15
Putting Road Safety on the Commonwealth Agenda