Campus safety issues addressed

Shane Finneran

The San Diego Community College District’s facilities office will conduct a “formal assessment of need” related to campus safety, said Vice President of Instruction Mary Benard at City College’s Academic Senate meeting on Nov. 8.

Benard said the appraisal will examine safety elements such as the adequacy of lighting, the availability of panic buttons, and the logistics of a buddy system for people who don’t want to walk around campus alone.

After the meeting, in an email interview, Benard said the assessment will take place “throughout the balance of this academic year.”

According to Benard, campus police were considering having officers on bicycles during select hours to increase their mobility and profile. She also said administrators are gauging the need for a campus closure policy.

“Without an official closure policy, the police officers cannot close the campus during evening hours and over holidays,” Benard said.

Closing the campus could give police more authority to clear members of the public from sensitive areas when necessary.

Benard further suggested students voice safety-related comments and concerns to Denise Whisenhunt, dean of student affairs, while faculty and staff can communicate with Benard or Jerry Davis, vice president of administrative services.