May is Building Safety Month, and NCARB is joining the International Code Council (ICC) in celebrating the important role that building safety professionals play in protecting the public’s health, safety, and welfare.

Architects and building safety professionals are frequent collaborators, working together to ensure that buildings meet local safety, sustainability, and accessibility standards. Whether you’re already licensed or working toward earning your license, engaging with your local building safety professionals can help you do your best work. Here’s how you can partner with code officials and other building safety professionals near you:

  1. Get to Know Your Codes
    First, get to know both your local building codes and recommended international standards. Building codes can vary by state, county, and even city, so it’s crucial that you’re familiar with your local building codes. But adopting international standards can take time at the local level, so keep a close eye on the ICC to stay in tune with evolving best practices. Not sure where to get started? Review NCARB’s roundup of building code resources.
  2. Meet With Your Building Safety Professional
    Don’t just interact with your local code official when applying for permits or conducting inspections—seek out your code experts in your community to foster a collaborative, informative partnership. Ask your building safety professional about common mistakes and get expert advice on how to avoid them.
  3. Follow Hazard-Resistant, Sustainable Building Codes
    According to the ICC, approximately 65% of counties, cities, and towns across the United States have not adopted modern building codes—but that doesn’t mean you can’t go above and beyond to uphold sustainable, hazard-resistant standards in your work. By holding yourself to even stricter, more resilient codes (as long as they don’t conflict with your locally enforced codes), you can protect your community against future risks, like natural disasters.
  4. Advocate for Better Codes
    If you’re in the 65%, it’s time to engage with your local legislators, city manager, or mayor to advocate for the adoption of modern safety standards. The ICC has a suite of resources that you can use to encourage your community to embrace building safety.

Interested in learning more about partnering with building safety professionals? Visit the ICC’s website to get started.