Urban Environment Safety for Children: The Analysis of Current
Natalia E. Rakitina
Department of Public and Private Law, Faculty of Social and Humanitarian Studies, Komsomolsk-na-Amure State
University, 27 Lenin’s Street, Komsomolsk-on-Amur, Russian Federation
Keywords: Urban Environment Safety, Quality Rating Parameters, Urban Areas, Urban Environment Quality, “Smart
Abstract: The analysis of modern trends in the development of state politics concerning the creation of safe urban
environment for children and the analysis of “urban environment safety” elaboration parameters are carried
out herein. The system-based analysis of the Russian Federation legislation concerning urban environment
safety pointed out the investigation actuality for such current practices as rating application while assessing
the quality of the Russian urban environment. Legally approved methods of urban environment quality
evaluation with statistical indicators included are reviewed, urban environment status monitoring is carried
out, and its digitalization level is assessed herein. The analysis of the current Russian legislation in terms of
issues related to children safety ensuring in urban environment revealed insufficient elaboration of urban
environment evaluation parameters with regard to its safety for children. Considerable attention in ratings is
paid to the issues concerning public areas improvement. Key indicators of urban environment quality, not
fully describing its safety evaluation parameters for children, were developed. An innovative project
developed for implementation of global digitalization into municipal facilities requires significant resources-
related costs. The recognition of the child as the top priority for the state sets the objectives related to the
development of safe environment for next generations of the Russians to their proper development. The
author proposed some additions to the current list of indicators by means of which urban environment safety
level for children can be defined.
The amendments made to the constitution of the
Russian Federation in 2020 specified the child as the
top priority of the Russian state policy
(GARANT.RU-1, 2020). Urban environment is
around a child from birth till age of majority. While
adults intent to create safe living environment for
rising generations, riskogenics of urban living tends
to increase year on year (Le-van, 2015). Some
negative phenomena of a natural or antisocial
character are becoming a new turn of a social
historical development (such as ecological and
natural disasters, vi-rus pandemics, terrorism and
many others) (Vologdina et al., 2020). Cyberspace is
becoming a platform for cybercrimes because of a
high victimity degree of children being potential
victims. Adult and conscious parents develop certain
strategies aimed at the development of safe behaviour
of their own children (precrime situations designing,
intimidation with possible improbable consequences,
and etc.) (Newman, 2001). Safety of urban areas for
children shall become a target criterion in the process
of Russian urban environment evaluation (Rakitina
and Filipova, 2017).
The viewpoint of the state on providing safety for all
citizens (including children) is specified in the
National Security Strategy of the Russian Federation
(hereinafter referred to as the Strategy) (Consultant
Plus, 2015).
The Strategy contains some specific forms of
children safety provision. They are mostly related to
Rakitina, N.
Urban Environment Safety for Children: The Analysis of Current Legislation.
DOI: 10.5220/0010597507800785
In Proceedings of the International Scientific and Practical Conference on Sustainable Development of Regional Infrastructure (ISSDRI 2021), pages 780-785
ISBN: 978-989-758-519-7
2021 by SCITEPRESS Science and Technology Publications, Lda. All rights reserved
the health care and improvement of cultural and
educational levels of young citizens at the age of up
to 18 years, the development of child friendly justice
(the development of the maternity and child welfare
service; the development of palliative medicine, for
children as well; the development of public medical
rehabilitation and improvement of the health resort
treatment system, and for children as well; children
and young people upbringing in the spirit of
citizenship (Consultant Plus, 2015).
Structural components for provision of state and
public safety are as follows:
the rise of efficiency indicators for law
protection activity of the bodies and special
services, as well as public oversight
(supervisory) authorities;
the improvement of the national crime
prevention system primarily among under-age
persons and other violations of the law
(including monitoring and evaluation of law
enforcement practice efficiency);
the development and implementation of special
measures aimed at decrease of public relations
criminalization level.
In 2018 the Federation Council issued a resolution
“On Measures of Russian Government Related to the
Implementation of the Priority Project
“Establishment of a Comfortable Urban
Environment” in which competent state authorities
and municipal authorities were recommended “to
take required measures for ensurance of law and
public safety in urban environment” (the Federation
Council, 2018).
Each federal subject of the Russian Federation
shall develop its own state program of public safety
and security ensurance and counteracting to crime in
the region (Khabarovsk Krai Government, 2020).
The evaluation of such programs implementation
results for each year is included into annual summary
reports with detailed description of indicators related
to the growth of crimes amount and crime detection
statistics. Crime monitoring in the regions is carried
out by the General Prosecutor's Office of the Russian
Federation with publishing of data as per the key
indicators on web-portal of legal statistics. Each
subject of the Russian Federation takes its own place
in the rating as per the key indicators of recorded
crimes. Year by year dynamics is specified (Web-
portal of legal statistics, 2020).
There was a shift to childhood in the Russian
society during the last decade. The state and society
began to treat “childhood” as a significant part of the
civil society requiring special attention. A new stage
in the state policy was marked by development of
specific national programs beginning with “The
National Strategy of Actions for the Benefit of
Children for 2012-2017” and including some a certain
content for strategic directions of activities to fulfill
the Plan of Events performed within the framework
of the Childhood Decade (hereinafter referred to as
the Plan) (GARANT.RU-1, 2017) and a system of
statistical indicators characterizing the process of
their execution (The Russian Government-2, 2019).
The Plan of Events, to be performed within the
period of 2018-2020 (The Russian Government,
2018), contains a section “Children Safety
Ensurance”. Some directions are specified in the
recommendations related to anti-terrorism
security of tent type organizations providing
recreation and recovery of children, as well as
the places of mass events with children
participation holding in a natural environment;
development of children life safety culture
(behaviour in case of emergency);
improvement of children active tourism safety;
accessibility and safety of emergency exits in
educational establishments.
It is specified in the section devoted to the events
aimed at cultural development of children that the
state mass media must be engaged to facilitate the
covering of events related to strengthening of a family
institution, spiritual and moral traditions of family
relationships, as well as a patriotic education of
children and youth, moral values propaganda, healthy
lifestyle popularization and a propaganda of kids and
teenager’s life safety culture. The above mentioned
preventive function of such an education provides the
growth of knowledge level in the sphere of fire safety
and life safety in general.
The tenth section “Safe Information Space for
Children” shall be marked among the main events
within the framework of the Childhood Decade.
According to the Plan the performance of these events
shall be resulted in children media literacy
improvement, increasing number of educating
programs aimed at familiarization of parents and
teachers with the newest hardware and software
means for children protection against negative
information, increasing level of children and their
parents (representatives in law) awareness of risks
and threats existing in the information and
communication network (Tseveleva and Starinov,
Expected results on providing and protection of
children rights and interests are described in the 13th
Urban Environment Safety for Children: The Analysis of Current Legislation
section of the Plan. They include the decrease of
juvenile criminals proportion in the total amount of
teenagers (14 to 17 years old), minimization of
attempted suicides number and suicides committed
among teenagers, humanization of a criminal
prosecution practice for under-age persons (medium
and small offense severity), resocialization of under-
age persons who are to discharge from penal colonies
(Vector “Childhood”, 2020).
Reformation of the approach to arrangement of
urban environment which is safe for children moving
and staying is performed on a stage by stage basis in
Russia. Since 2017 a large scale work has been
carried out in Russia concerning provision of
accessible urban environment, as amended, including
events for the period of their performance till 2025
(GARANT.RU-2, 2020). Within the framework of
this program, objects and services accessibility maps
for category of people with different disabilities are
being created in municipal units. The fulfillment of
control over respecting the interests and providing
accessible and safe conditions for people with
different disabilities in all social urban objects
became the aim of municipal authorities. Urban
amenities plans also assume the creation of attraction
points for people, the establishment of accessible
public areas for leisure of children and adults.
Speaking about the integral evaluation of Russian
urban area safety (Hagmann, 2017) in general, paying
attention to cities rating evaluation is necessary. The
implementation of the monitoring program “The
Quality Index of Urban Environment” and the project
“Smart City” within the framework of the national
project “Housing and urban environment” became
1 The Program “Quality Index of Urban
Environment”. In November 2019 the Russian
Ministry of Construction published the results of
Russian cities indexing with regard to urban
environment quality. Evaluation procedure was
developed in accordance with the Russian President
Decree enumerating the list of indicators to assess the
efficiency of top officials activities, as well as the
activities of Russian federal subjects executive
authorities. One of the indicators is marked as “the
proportion of cities with a comfortable urban
environment” (The Russian Government-3, 2019).
Taking into account the large territory of Russia
“The Quality Index of Urban Environment” applies a
differentiated approach based on the size and the
climatic conditions to different cities. The safety of
urban environment is one of the six criteria for urban
environment quality evaluation. There may be the
following indicators having impact on urban
environment safety:
The proportion of apartment blocks considered as
unfit ones (maybe used to characterize the safety of
living conditions);
The proportion of solid and municipal wastes sent
for treatment and disposal (this indicator increase
proves the improvement of ecological situation; it
characterizes ecological safety of the environment);
The proportion of pedestrian deaths occurred a
result of road accidents (it characterizes the safety of
urban road traffic network with regard to pedestrian
The amount of traffic (it characterizes the number
of constant atmospheric emission sources and
subsequently has impact on ecological safety);
The level of urban environment accessibility for
people with different disabilities (it characterizes the
accessibility and safety of urban infrastructure
objects, public transport, public areas and pedestrian
The proportion of lighted parts of streets, lanes
and embankments (it characterizes the safety of
movement during night time);
The safety of movement near health care,
education, culture and sport institutions (it
characterizes the safety of children movement to the
objects of infrastructure);
The number of road accidents versus the number
of population (it characterizes the level of threat to
life and health of children because of various risks
caused by the imperfection of its infrastructure);
The proportion of the urban population provided
with potable water of a proper quality (the sanitation
safety of children).
2 The Project “Smart City”. The initial items of
the project were defined in 2015. The Russian
Ministry of Internal Affairs developed technical
requirements to the law enforcement segment of the
hardware and software complex “The Safety City”. In
May 2017 the new methodological recommendations
were sent to the regional departments of the ministry
(RU-BEZH, 2015).
Interdepartmental Commission for issues related
to the project implementation and development had
been working till September 23, 2017 as a part of the
Russian government. Systems for calling emergency
response services through the universal telephone
number 112” and the State Automated Information
SystemERA-GLONASS appeared alongside with
the development of the target directions for providing
the safety strategy (GARANT.RU-2, 2017).
The above mentioned safety systems were
combined as a single platform “The Smart City” with
ISSDRI 2021 - International Scientific and Practical Conference on Sustainable Development of Regional Infrastructure
the support of the Russian president in 2018. The
transformation of the pilot project was approved by
the order of the Ministry of Construction, Housing
and Utilities of the Russian Federation (hereinafter
referred to as the Russian Ministry of Construction)
No. 924/pr dd December 31, 2019 “On approval of
the evaluation of the process and efficiency of urban
facilities digital transformation in the Russian
Federation (City IQ)” (The Russian Ministry of
Construction, 2019). Under the ministry a working
group specializing in the project implementation
began its functioning; the group included the
representatives of all interested federal and regional
authorities, the representatives of housing and utilities
branches, IT-technologies developers, a group of
experts, the representatives of scientific society and
centers of competence, as well as a UN Deputy
Secretary General, the Executive Director of the
United Nations Human Settlements Program (UN
Habitat) Ms. Maimunah Mohd Sharif. Taganrog
became the first full-scale “smart city” upon the
results of the project startup in 2019 (RG.RU, 2020).
The “Smart City” standard includes items related
to the implementation of the following systems:
automatic photo and video recording of road
traffic offences;
management of urban parking areas;
intelligent management of urban public
intelligent traffic control (“smart traffic
safe and comfortable public transport waiting
roadway condition monitoring;
intelligent systems of ecological safety, and
etc. (The Russian Ministry of Construction,
The movement of Russia towards the global
digitalization of all public and economic processes
following the rapid development of IT-technologies
led to the occurrence of the “smart city” idea. It is
capable to control the communication systems of
municipal units and to facilitate all-round control over
events in urban are-as. The idea shall be implemented
in the direction from the West to the East of the
country. Of course, the issues related to the all-round
implementation of total control systems cause a lot of
discussions in the society (Dé R., 2016).
Implementing the global program of control over all
life support systems, the municipal facilities face the
problem of public danger level increase, if cyber
criminals are infiltrated into such a platform.
Financial expenses for development and
implementation became another limitation for the
project spreading. The current economical crisis,
because of relieving the consequences of the anti-
pandemic campaign 2019-2020 and a protract-ed
nature of limitations escaping, created sufficient
number of reasons to believe that the East of Russia
will not be able to see the efficiency of such digital
project implementation in the nearest future.
Therefore, nowadays urban environment safety
shall be specified and included into the current
program of the Russian urban environment safety
quality evaluation “The Quality Index of Urban
Environment” (Consultant Plus, 2019).
By 2024 the rise of the index average value of the
urban environment quality all over the Russian
Federation by one third (+30 %) is planned by the
Government (The Russian Government-1, 2019).
Therefore, the internal indicators of urban
environment safety shall increase. It means that the
number of cities having a comfortable environment
shall increase by one third (up to 60 %).
As an example, in 2019 the 13th place was the
result of work related to the development of a
comfortable urban environment (out of 84
participating federal subject) according to the data
provided by the press service of the governor and
Khabarovsk Krai government. Moscow region has
still the leading position (National projects of
Khabarovsk Krai, 2020). Meanwhile, the key
indicators demonstrating efforts related to the
development of a comfortable urban environment
were concentrated on the issues of public areas
improvement but without taking in-to consideration
such an important indicator of comfortability as the
urban areas safеty (Lebedeva, 2020).
The place in a rating of the recorded indicators of
crimes committed in Khabarovsk Krai for the period
of 2019 can be observed here. During a decadde the
rating place of Khabarovsk Krai among all Russian
regions has not been low than the 28th (with regard to
the total number of the recorded crimes at low
population density) (Web-portal of legal statistics,
2020). As the result, the environmental quality
increases according to the index but without taking
into account the criminogenic level of the region.
Urban Environment Safety for Children: The Analysis of Current Legislation
The Russian legislation has got a significant resource
in the form of developed state programs aimed at the
society development with children as the top priority.
The activities developed in the federal plans are
implemented directly in the federal subjects.
Requirements to ensuring infrastructure objects
accessibility for people with disabilities were
developed long ago, as well as the indicators of the
urban environment quality. However up to now no
specific indicators have been defined by means of
which the statistic indicators of the urban
environment safety for children could be taken into
account. But children are the main users of urban
areas (in case of leisure together with adults or by
their own mobility potential). The criminogenic level
of environment in cities shall be included as a
parameter alongside with some other ones.
The analysis of the legislation in the field of
providing urban environment safety for children
justified that Appendix No. 1 of the Russian
Federation Government Decree No. 510-r dd March
23rd, 2019 shall be amended. The list of indicators for
urban environment quantity index calculation shall be
supplemented as follows: “37 Number of crimes
committed towards under-age persons and ones
committed with their participation per year. The
calculation formula is the ratio be-tween the number
of crimes committed toward under-age persons and
the number of population (between 0-18 years old)
per year. According to the data provided by the
Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs. The indicator
characterizes the degree of urban environment safety
for children”. “38 The implementation degree of an
automatic photo-video recording system into the
perimeters of public places and building surrounding
areas. The calculation formula is the increase of
perimeters number equipped with automatic photo-
video recording systems in a reporting year versus the
number of perimeters equipped in the previous year”.
The existing indicators related to the efficiency in
holding activities aiming at safety provisions are
specified in the statistical annual reports of internal
affairs bodies and regional security departments
responsible for fulfillment of public safety programs
(except for road traffic and transport safety). At the
same time the de-crease in the number of road
accidents with participation of under-age persons is
interrelated with roadways and pedestrian ways
quantity improvement and taking additional measures
for regulating pedestrian movement around a city
(The Russian Government, 2018).
The important parameter having impact on public
areas safety is an outdoor surveillance providing a
recording of situation taking place inside parks,
public gardens and embankments. That is why the
provision of public areas with monitoring of their
current situation will not only help to detect street
crimes but can also be used as a preventive mean
against public disturbers.
Proposed parameters will help to specificate
urban environment quality indicators shifting the
emphasis to the safety of urban areas for children.
Chasing the leading positions in the rating of urban
environment quality, the efforts of municipal and
state authority representatives will focus on the target
indicator of urban environment quality that is its
safety for children.
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Urban Environment Safety for Children: The Analysis of Current Legislation