About Safe Citizen

Prepare Today for a Safer Tomorrow

From natural disasters to catastrophic accidents to terrorist attacks, emergencies and disasters fill our world. While many find it uncomfortable to consider such difficult situations, ignoring their existence can increase the likelihood that they will occur and the consequences that follow. There’s no benefit in ignoring risks and hoping you can figure things out after disaster strikes. But there are plenty of benefits to emergency preparedness.

Safe Citizen Day 2021 

Safe Citizen Day, September 18, 2021, is a time to invest in creating a safer environment for everyone – our friends and families, our neighborhoods and communities, our schools and businesses and everything in-between. 

Our Vision: creating safer environments that provide for increased preparedness, decreased violence and reduced injury – thereby improving community health and well-being. 

Our Mission: engage individuals and communities through actions which collectively moves us toward a safer place for us all to live and work.

An Idea from Dr. James Pruden

The Safe Citizen Day concept is the idea of Dr. James Pruden, former director of Emergency Preparedness at St. Joseph’s Health, who has been a leader in the emergency preparedness world for several decades.

“Proper planning and prevention can reduce the catastrophic impact of a disasters or serious events on entire communities, particularly vulnerable populations.”   Dr. James Pruden

On September 11, 2001, like so many who responded to the terrorist attacks, Jim was struck by the amazing response to the event and how the months and years of training played such an integral role in minutes, hours and days that followed.  Jim also noted there were thousands of everyday people who were caught up in the event – as well as  other emergency events that have followed in recent years.  Jim’s thoughts immediately moved to what he knows best – training and preparedness.  Asking – why not preparedness for the community – to help make everyone safer.   Why not designate a day where everyone in the community could engage in emergency preparedness to help improve the odds and outcomes associated with unplanned events? Small steps in the right direction… that would add up to big results.

With the help of his medical colleagues, Jim brought the endeavor forward to St. Joseph’s Health CEO Kevin Slavin – who quickly jumped in and endorsed the concept – noting the important role clinicians and response teams could play in its success.  The initiative quickly grew as others joined in – including the Paterson Fire Department, Paterson Police Department, Paterson Board of Education, Paterson Boys & Girls Club, and the North Jersey Chapter of the American Red Cross. 

Now, we are ready to launch the first Safe Citizen Day on September 18, 2021 – on the 20th Anniversary of September 11. 

Saturday, September 18, 2021
60 Temple Street, Paterson