Campus Safety Initiatives
Evanston Campus Safety Initiatives and Updates - Email from Dean of Students Burgie Howard (Wednesday, November 16, 2011)
Dear Northwestern Students,
As most students are well aware, the University community has experienced a disquieting increase in robberies in recent weeks in the areas adjacent to and on the southern and western parts of our Evanston campus. These thefts have largely targeted students carrying smart phones or other forms of portable electronics. Last week, an announcement (Evanston Campus Community Alert and Safety Tips) went out to the entire community outlining the current situation and tips for how to respond to crime related issues. The purpose of this message is to update the campus population on the University's efforts to address these concerns since they surfaced late last month.
Additional police resources have been deployed and officers have been on foot and in vehicles along the perimeter of campus in hopes of monitoring groups of juveniles or other groups heading to campus that may be intent on criminal activity. In addition to those officers:
• Two unarmed Community Service Officers (CSO's) are patrolling the interior of campus utilizing 3 wheel Segway type vehicles.
• Two unarmed Security Officers are stationed in marked security vehicles for periods of static patrol along streets adjacent to campus where our students frequently travel.
• A Problem Solving Team (one police sergeant and three police officers) that have been working 7PM until 3AM since the first night of orientation will be patrolling mostly on foot near the south end of campus. They will have a vehicle for their use nearby in case they need to respond to another area.
• Finally, some resources from the Chicago campus and day shift personnel have been redeployed to the Evanston campus to patrol perimeter areas and respond quickly to any crimes against persons occurring on or near campus.
All of the above additional patrol resources are working from 6PM until 2AM nightly and are scheduled to be in place until November 23, 2011 when the Northwestern University Police Department will review their effectiveness and make adjustments as necessary.
Campus & Off-Campus Lighting
The University has been upgrading and repairing existing on-campus lighting, so that walks and pathways are visible.
• Additionally the University has been upgrading the exterior lighting on all University owned properties west of Sheridan road to ensure that as much light as possible is available to pedestrians as they use the campus or walk to their residences. If students should ever notice that a University light fixture is not working, they should immediately report the problem to Facilities Management at (847) 491-5201 (Call 456 from any campus phone) or call the NUPD Non-emergency number (847) 491-3456.
• The University has been working closely with the Evanston City Manager's Office, and the 5th Ward Alderman to improve and upgrade the City-owned lighting West of Sheridan Road. These upgrades are ongoing, and we are working with the City to ensure that these lighting improvements happen first in areas where a significant number of student residents live.
• The administration has also worked closely with ASG and City officials to make recommendations for future improvements. If you have lighting or safety concerns for areas in Evanston, simply place a call to Evanston's 3-1-1 call center to pose your question or to initiate a work order.
Now that campus construction is winding down for the season, all Campus Shuttles should be running as scheduled. Students are encouraged to use the GPS shuttle tracker as a resource.
• The other option for shuttle service updates is to call the phone message board at (847) 467-5284, which is updated with information if the shuttle is running more than 10 minutes behind or there is an emergency re-route. For Twitter users, Transportation Services tweets the most serious shuttle disruptions at @NU_SHUTTLES.
• Given that student safety is a priority concern for the University, an additional stop has been added, at student suggestion, at Ridge/Simpson. This new stop will be implemented this weekend, starting with the Friday evening routes on the Evanston Loop and the Intercampus Shuttle on Monday. Although a shuttle stop sign will not be in place for this weekend the students should be able to wave the bus down for service.
If students ever have any issues, concerns, or comments regarding the shuttle service, they should contact Transportation Services at email@example.com
SafeRide services continue to operate on campus between 7pm- 3am seven days a week during the academic year. SafeRide is a safety service – not a taxi, but the staff and drivers will do all that they can to ensure that students get to their residences and destinations safely.
• Please visit the SafeRide site to familiarize yourself with the service and regulations for use. Safe Ride may be reached by calling (847) 491-7000. Twitter users may follow SafeRide updates at twitter.com/#!/saferidewait
Lastly, if you ever have a safety concern on campus, do not hesitate to contact the police by call 911 or utilize a campus “Blue Light” emergency phone, which connects directly to University Police. The safety of Northwestern's students, faculty and staff is our top priority and we need everyone to exhibit personal care for your safety, and those around you, and we encourage students to take advantage of these resources as they travel the campus and surrounding community.
Evanston Campus Community Alert and Safety Tips - Email from Dean of Students Burgie Howard (Wednesday, November 9, 2011)
Dear Northwestern Students,
As you are aware, the Northwestern University Police (UP) has issued an alert to the Northwestern University Evanston campus community to be aware of incidents of robbery in the areas on and near campus as well as public transportation stations and stops. Offenders have been targeting individuals using or possessing smart phones while walking on or near the campus. Potential robbers often pose questions to targets; such as asking for the time, or seeking directions in order to get them to stop and reveal property. They also sometimes watch for individuals wearing earbuds as they believe they are connected to iPhones or other smartphones. Some robberies have occurred in areas near or on public transit where the frequent train stops can allow for a quick getaway.
UP asks all community members to be aware of this crime pattern. Here are some tips that may help you to avoid becoming a victim:
• When walking or using public transportation keep alert and aware of your surroundings.
• Try to walk on well-lit and well-traveled streets when going to yourdestination. Avoid shortcuts and alleys.
• Do not walk with headphones on, as you may not hear subjects approaching you.
• Try to keep smartphones and other valuables out of sight.
• If you see something that makes you uncomfortable, trust your instincts and cross the street, change directions or go to a public place.
• Even if the person does not approach you, if you believe they are suspicious, report it to the police. You may prevent someone else from being robbed.
• If a robber confronts you, cooperate and give up any items demanded. Attempt to inconspicuously look at the robber to provide police with a good description including sex, race, height, weight, build, complexion, hair color/style, and clothing - including hats and jackets. Compare the robber to your own height and weight to estimate the size of your attacker. If a weapon is displayed, describe the weapon as well. We understand that the shock of the situation may not allow you to remember everything, but do your best to try to remember these details.
• At the first opportunity, call 911 or utilize a campus "Blue Light" emergency phone, which connects directly to University Police.
• Don't hesitate or be afraid to call the police. If you have to ask yourself if you should call the police..., you should call the police. If you think you might be at risk, the police are the ones who can get to you the fastest and help you. Your safety is their first priority.
• Cooperate with the police — if you are robbed, or see someone else being robbed, report it to the police immediately. Remember you may be helping to prevent the robbery of a fellow student, and help the police apprehend suspects or recover property.
If you have any questions or can provide any information regarding these types of incidents, please contact UP at 847-491-3456. Thank you for your attention to this issue.