Palmerston North safe community status

Palmerston North is recognised by the Pan Pacific Safe Communities Network as an international safe community.

Our city was first awarded the safe community status in March 2014. At that time, Palmerston North became the 26th safe community in New Zealand and the 333rd in the world.

In March 2019, following the end of the five-year accreditation period, Palmerston North applied for and earned reaccreditation from the certifying centre, Safe Communities Foundation New Zealand.

As an accredited safe community, we are accountable to the Pan Pacific Safe Communities Network for regular updates and reports on our efforts to make Palmerston North a safer place for residents. We also join a global network of around 60 countries to achieve Pan Pacific safe community accreditation.

What is a safe community?

The World Health Organization views the safe communities approach as an important means of delivering evidence-based violence and injury prevention strategies at the local level.

The Pan Pacific Safe Communities Network defines a safe community as an attractive place to live, work and visit.

A safe community is a liveable community, where people can go about their daily activities in an environment without fear, risk of harm or injury. Perceptions of community safety, real or perceived, impact on the way people feel and interact in their community. Community safety is not only about reducing and preventing injury and crime. It is about building strong, cohesive, vibrant, participatory communities.

To gain accreditation, communities must demonstrate that they go above and beyond what is required by law to protect and promote the safety and well-being of their citizens.

Making Palmerston North safer

Palmerston North's reaccreditation as an international safe community in 2019 affirms our commitment to being a connected and safe city. Since our first accreditation in 2014, our city has made great strides in promoting safety throughout the whole community. The Palmerston North safe community programme is strategically focused on six key priorities:

  1. collaboration
  2. road safety
  3. injury prevention
  4. crime prevention
  5. alcohol and other drug harm reduction
  6. resilience

The programme includes a wide range of safety initiatives, including:

  • Māngai Atawhai and Safe City Angels monitoring the central business district
  • a cycle skills programme and Junior Road Safety Park to promote road safety
  • falls and injury sessions and strength and balance classes for senior citizens
  • installation of a network of safety cameras and LED lights
  • several connection events such as the community-led Raleigh Street Reserve revitalisation which included upgrade to community facilities and a traffic-calming road mural
  • Placemaking initiatives to make public spaces safer and more vibrant.

Work with us

Strengthening coordination, resource sharing and continued support for safety among community organisations and our residents is one of our key priorities.

If you have any ideas or projects that can contribute to making our city safer and more connected, please get in touch with us to discuss how we can support you. Email: