Public Safety issues annual security report

By Christina Flood
October 22, 2009

Students, faculty, staff, families and prospective students all deserve to be informed about the crime statistics and campus security policies at their college.

Murder, sex offenses, robbery, assault and drug and liquor violations are just a few of the crimes that Cabrini College’s Public Safety and Fire Safety Report covers each year.

The crime statistics are one of the most important aspects of the report, and one of the most prominent crimes on college campuses are alcohol violations.

The 2008 report, which was released this month, discloses that alcohol violations and arrests were the highest Cabrini has seen in over three years.

There were 250 alcohol violations reported and 32 arrests for alcohol in 2008. Six people on campus were arrested due to use or possession of illegal drugs, while another 23 were in violation of drug laws.

Burglary is the third highest statistic the security report covers. Down from 21 burglaries in 2007, nine were reported this past year.

Lillian Burroughs, director of Public Safety, believes that numbers have risen due to Public Safety’s improved collaboration with residence life as well as other college departments.

“It should be a true representation of what happens on campus,” said Burroughs of the security report.

There are many colleges that try to conceal the crimes that occur on their campuses because they want to maintain a good reputation and leave a good impression on perspective students. Students and parents are likely to be less interested in a school if the college’s crime statistics are high.

The annual report, put together by Burroughs, is not only made to educate the Cabrini College community, but also because it is a federal requirement that all colleges and universities accurately report on crime statistics and security.

New to the security report is the fire safety section, which was included because it is now required due to the Higher Education Opportunity Act. Conducted by Public Safety, residence halls now have fire drills each month.

Each semester, resident assistants inspect rooms to see that all fire safety guidelines are being followed.

Sex offenses are one of the most difficult statistics to document on a college campus. It is for the student to decide whether or not they want to report a sex offense and therefore the number may be lower than documented.

In 2008, there were three sex offenses on this campus which is up from one person in 2006.

Not only do crimes result in consequences for the students, but for Cabrini as well because the crimes become statistics for the school.

“This report is a true indication that we have crime that happens, but we don’t sweep it under the carpet,” Burroughs said.

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Christina Flood

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