Fostering regional road safety collaboration
Last month EASST partnered with the World Health Organisation (WHO) Europe to host a one-and-a-half-day event in Tbilisi, Georgia, bringing together EASST Partners – leaders of key road safety NGOs across Eastern Europe, South Caucasus and Central Asia – with government officials and traffic police representatives working on road safety in their countries.
The event offered an opportunity for regional dialogue and discussion ahead of the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety in Stockholm in February 2020, and gave participants the opportunity to establish national and regional priorities as well as looking at potential for collaboration to improve road safety policy, implementation and enforcement across the region over the next decade, with all participants endorsing the Towards Zero Foundation 50 by 30 campaign to reduce road fatalities globally by 50% by 2030.
The facilitated discussion ensured that participants will be able to maximise the opportunities presented by the Stockholm conference – with discussions aimed at developing a shared agenda and looking at how to ensure the maximum regional and country input and benefit is achieved.
On opening the meeting, Jonathon Passmore of WHO Europe said:
“There are still great challenges to making roads safer in this part of the world … There will be some big decisions in road safety made over the coming months and we want to make sure the views from our sub-region are represented.”
Serghei Diaconu, EASST Regional Director, former Chief of the Road Police in Moldova, and former Deputy Minister for Internal Affairs in Moldova led an open discussion on the priorities and challenges of road policing in the region such as better cooperation between police and other agencies, training programmes for police officers, and better IT solutions (for example, for average speed camera enforcement), and how these needs can be addressed.
EASST partners Irina Potyakina, Belarusian Auto Moto Touring Club, and Oksana Romanhuka, Impact NGO Ukraine, facilitated the final discussion of the event looking at the current situation in the region in relation to the UN Global Road Safety Performance Targets including priority areas and case studies from EASST Partners with the aim of identifying areas of success as well as key areas for future development and support.
The discussions presented several areas for continued collaboration between EASST partners, WHO and national governments. Looking forward to the Ministerial Conference in Stockholm next year, we hope to build on these commitments with a shared vision towards eliminating road-related casualties from our region’s roads through building capacity and prioritising a safe system approach.