By Laura-Jean Null
Within the past month, there have been multiple crimes happen along the outside of East Stroudsburg’s campus. It is clear that some students do not feel safe walking around a dark campus at night and Resident Advisors are aware of this.
Resident Advisor at Linden Hall, Darian Cruz said, “I think lighting is always a good thing, especially in the wake of recent incidents on campus.
Students should make sure to always walk with people at night on campus or anywhere.”
Additionally, if students are walking alone or do not feel safe, the University Police Department does offer a safe-ride program. An officer will pick you up or walk with you to your location to make sure you get back safe. If we look at the most recent Police Blotter from Oct. 26, 2017, there was a stalking/harassment incident, indecent assault; unwanted sexual advances, multiple thefts, a robbery and multiple drug or alcohol incidents.
Junior Michaella Rinaldi said, “With everything going on around the world and teaching us about safety at night, more lighting would be vital to help us feel safer.”
She continued, “Living over at the UA’s, we lose light after Hawthorn and it’s dark around our building and the parking lots, and it’s the safest place at night.”
Lighting is becoming a safety issue for some students and as safety reports are being sent out, more students are becoming aware of threats that occur on campus.
In most recent events, an email was sent out to ESU students, staff and facility.
According to the University,
“Stroud Area Regional Police (SARP) are investigating the report of gun shots coming from the area of South Courtland Street reported on Tuesday, Oct. 31, 2017 at about 11:50 PM.”
For those who are unaware, South Courtland is about a four-minute car ride away from campus. The point to be made is the proximity of these crimes is something to be noted and changes need to be made.
For some students, the street lights are not the issue. Instead, it’s the blue safety lights that are.
Resident Advisor at Laurel Hall said, “Overall, the lighting on the campus isn’t too bad, but the main concern is if the blue light stands actually work. That concerns me, especially if I was ever in a scary situation.”
Resident Advisor in Minsi Hall, Jack Smith discussed that when he was a freshman, he needed to use one of the blue lights on campus. In one occurrence, his roommate was really sick and his car would not start.
Smith reported they waited 15 minutes and started walking before a police car pulled up. If this was a different scenario with an emergency that needed immediate response, matters could have been worse.
Blue lights need to be updated, checked, notified to the public and response times need to be monitored. Sometimes, the fact of the matter is we cannot stop terrible people from making terrible decisions.
There can always be consequences after someone comes forward or the police find the culprit who committed a crime. However, ESU needs to act before, not just after.
For example, a number of factors can play into someone being mugged on campus. What if ESU took out those simple factors. More police circling the campus at night is one option and adding more lighting is a reasonable option.
Especially to the areas that are not the center of campus.
Resident Advisor at the University Apartments, Shakiya Thompson said, “When you get to the UA’s, it’s dark and dim. So, I would feel safer if there was more lights around the areas…’
Additionally, Thompson also said, “There should be more lights on the fine arts paths.”
As a campus, we need to be more aware of our surroundings. However, a little more light would help us see the potential threats that lie out there.
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