Campus security needs attention
October 4, 2007
In the wake of another alleged violent crime occurring on campus this semester, safety has become an issue at UW-River Falls once again. If the latest allegations—the details of which have not yet been released by the River Falls Police Department—are true, within the last calendar year UWRF will have seen two sexual assaults and one peeping tom added to its list of deviant crimes. While we are lucky that this number isn’t much higher; students and campus administration could be doing more to remedy the problem.
It has been nearly four years since WCCO visited UWRF to conduct an undercover study to expose problems with dorm security. While the initial visit prompted administration to administer changes that improved the situation, more could still be done to make UWRF safer, not only in the dorms, but in other places on campus.
While safety on the path between the South Fork Suites and Ramer Field could be partially remedied by adding some emergency call boxes and better lighting, students also need to use a little common sense. UWRF administrators and Public Safety are adamant that you should never travel the path by yourself late at night, and they’re right. If you can’t find someone to walk with you on that path, the choice is simple, take a different, safer route, even if it is a longer one. A little extra exercise is a much better alternative than being the victim of a crime.
Common sense is also the problem in regards to safety in the dorms. Students are constantly allowing tailgaters into dorms. This was found to be true in the WCCO follow-up report on dorm safety a year after their original report, when their undercover cameraman was allowed access to every single dorm by overly trusting students. While students who allow tailgaters into dorms are being nice, they are also taking an unnecessary risk that could cost them, or someone else, dearly at some point. Next time you are going to allow a tailgater into your dorm, you should ask yourself if you want to take the chance of allowing a sexual predator into the building.
Another step administration could take would be to close off exterior access to all side and back doors to the dorms and filter everyone through a main entrance that either has a security camera or guard. While students might be slightly inconvenienced by having to walk an extra 100 feet this would likely deter any deviants from entering the dorms.
If these steps, or some extra alternate measures were taken, maybe UWRF could get the number of crimes of perversion on campus just a little closer to where, ideally, it should be: zero.