The Neighbourhood Road Safety Initiative
One of the British Government s road safety targets is to reduce the number of children killed or seriously injured in road traffic accidents by 50 per cent by 2010. An important part of the strategy for achieving this is to tackle the significantly higher incidence of road traffic casualties in disadvantaged communities. Children from disadvantaged backgrounds are five times more likely to be killed on the roads as pedestrians than their peers from the highest socio-economic group. There is also an inequalities gradient for men aged 20 to 64 years where it has been estimated that annually there would be 600 fewer deaths nationally if all had the same accident probabilities as Social Class I.
The Government s Public Service Agreement (PSA) for the Department for Transport (DfT) states that road safety strategy targets should tackle the significantly higher incidence of road traffic injury among disadvantaged communities. Therefore, local authorities have a clear mandate to ensure that the needs of all sections of the community are met and that they provide services that are appropriate and accessible to the whole community. There are other policy initiatives that require closer working with the local community targeted at deprived communities such as democratic renewal, partnership working through Local Strategic Partnerships, and Best Value.