Oklahoma Certified Healthy Communities
Purpose of Oklahoma Certified Healthy Communities
House Bill 2774 created the “Oklahoma Certified Healthy Communities Act” which establishes a voluntary certification program for communities that promote wellness, encourage the adoption of healthy behaviors and establishes safe and supportive environments. This annual certification process recognizes Oklahoma communities for their outstanding efforts and achievements in actively creating healthier communities.
Reasons to Apply to be a Certified Healthy Community
- Create a healthier Oklahoma
- Community collaboration over shared health concerns
- Community recognition as a healthy place to live, work, learn and play
- Provides a town with guidelines for how to become a healthy community
- Helps a community make connections about how policies and ordinances impact health
Communities of all sizes are encouraged to apply to be an Oklahoma Certified Healthy Community. For the purpose of this application a community is defined as, “a city or town that has a governing body that allows it to make decisions and set ordinances.”
Communities will only be allowed to submit one application annually and are encouraged to collaborate with local community coalitions, city planners, city council and local health care providers before completing application process. A community coalition, made up of several members would be an ideal group to apply for the Oklahoma Certified Healthy Communities status.
Communities will be Certified in One of Five Categories Based on the 2010 Census:
- Rural: population less than 4,300
- Small: population between 4,300 – 13,999
- Medium: population between 14,000 -29,999
- Large: population between 30,000 - 79,999
- Metro: population of 80,000 or more
Each application will be reviewed by the Oklahoma Certified Healthy Communities staff. Applicants will not be competing with other communities in their population category; however, population size will determine the required number of points that must be met in each category of the application. Based on size of the community and the number of points earned in each of the four application categories, communities will be awarded a basic, merit or excellence certification.
Tips for Completing Applications
- Print a copy of the criteria first for review
- Do not start the application process until you are ready to complete and submit (you will not be able to save the application)
- Before submitting the application be sure to print a copy for your records
- Submitted applications are final
- Criteria checked must be met at the time of submission
- All city-owned/operated properties must be smoke free indoors (no smoking rooms)
- All city-owned/operated properties are tobacco free indoors and out
- Community farmer’s markets, corner stores and grocery stores accept (WIC) Women, Infants and Children, (SNAP) Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or Senior Nutrition Vouchers
- Active Safe Routes to School or Walking School Bus program
- Community promotion of public transit and/or van transport for health related services or needs (i.e. Doctor’s offices, Senior Centers, Assisted Living Centers, pharmacies or grocery stores, etc.)
- Community is engaged in a local community needs assessment addressing public health issues
- Community investment in safe, alcohol-free activities for prom and graduation
To review and print the 2012 criteria click here.
If you have any questions or need more information please call Victoria Gaddis at 405-271-9444 ext. 56433. The web-based application is no longer available for 2012, but you can start getting ready for 2013!