Student Security Petition

Two weeks One week from today at 1:30pm at Belmont and Western is the court date for the man who was arrested on campus and charged with sexual assault for his actions in the second floor women’s rest room.

Two things you should know:

1) Some of our students are planning a show of support for the victim, meeting in the lobby of HWC at 11:30 on Tuesday, November 1st before heading over to the courtroom, and I believe all are invited and welcome; and

2) Some of our students have put together a petition (which you can print out by clicking HERE) in light of what occurred and requested that I share it with other faculty so that anyone interested may share it with their students.

Should you decide to inform students of it (I did) and should any students sign it, you may drop it off in my mailbox on the 10th floor (in the Humanities office in room 1014, or you can shove it under my office door (1036), if I’m not there) and I’ll make sure that the organizing students receive the signed petitions.

In case you missed the story in the school paper, the petition gives the following as background:

On September 8, 2011, at approximately 7:20pm at Harold Washington College on the second floor, a man who was unaffiliated with HWC entered the women’s bathroom and attempted to sexually assault a female student.  The man attempted to climb under the occupied stall door at which timethe woman began screaming. The man then stood between the woman and the exit, naked from the waist down.  The woman screamed until the man exited the bathroom; the man was apprehended ten minutes later in the men’s bathroom, also on the second floor.

The petition’s signatories are identified as “concerned students who urge our leaders to act now to improve security protocols in our college,” collectively making four requests toward that end:

1. Email blasts are to be sent to all students detailing any and all criminal incidents that occur within or around the HWC campus. 

2. The “Security Policies and Crime Statistics Report” link on the HWC website will be updated as crimes occur, without an update lapse of more than a month. 

3. A full disclosure of security team functions, duties, obligations, and responsibilities is to be provided to students at HWC, either accessible via the HWC website or in conjunction with student safety seminars or events. 

4. Student safety seminars or events are to be performed each and every semester to ensure that all students are aware of potential safety hazards as well as the best practices for avoiding, combating, and reporting crimes that may occur on campus.

They seem to me to be reasonable requests, and I love the thoughtful and active approach that our students are taking to advocate for themselves and each other.

With the obvious exception of the impetus for it all, it seems to me to be good stuff all around.

UPDATE: Sorry about the screw-up. If you want more info (and belong to Facebook), you can find it HERE.