Like with any other property, there’s no way to create a foolproof plan that keeps your campus safe from harm. There are, however, essential safety tips to relay to campus guests to help make it a safer place. Let’s walk through some of the essentials.
Recent tragic news events have created new discussions about campus security. Although certain horrendous episodes may never be able to be deterred from happening again in the future, campus students and staff need to become as familiar as possible with safety precautions to help prevent such disasters and minimize both danger and damage in the event that they do occur.
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Campus property managers are rightly considering (and reconsidering) campus emergency phones as an effective way to fight and deter crime (learn the unique safety advantages and features of doing so here).
However in addition, it is also important to relay certain campus safety tips with the students, faculty and staff that utilize the campus. The youthful, relaxed, positive energy of academic campuses can often project a false sense of security and overall lack of crime. The best steps toward combating crime is to be aware of what it takes to protect yourself. As the property manager, you can share essential safety tips via email blasts, social media, bulletin boards and student meetings. Seek to relate the following:
Get familiar with the school’s campus safety office.
Have students know where the school’s campus safety office is located and to include its contact information in their phone. Additionally, urge them to know where any emergency phone stations are located so that they can summon help if they need it.
Be aware of your surroundings, especially at night.
Try to avoid walking alone — use the buddy system or call campus security for a ride. It’s good to have a phone app for emergencies, but stationary emergency phones are often a more effective option when addressing emergencies and deterring crime. Why? They act as security stations that provide immediate and reliable emergency communications solutions and provide location and safety help that cannot be duplicated with a cell phone.
Lock the door.
Living in a dorm room emits a more casual vibe, but you should always lock the door even if you are only gone for a few minutes. If you live on the first floor, draw your blinds and lock your windows. Designate a drawer or buy a safe for storing your valuables.
Look around you when getting into your car.
Keep your head up and be aware; don’t look distracted. Don’t walk in between cars — instead walk where you can be seen. Keep your finger on your key’s car alarm. Don’t approach a stranger who is loitering near or at your car. As you approach the car, check the backseat. Once in the car, lock your car doors immediately. Don’t linger. Take off as soon as it is safely possible.
Learn tips specific to parking lot safety in this blog post.
Stay as private as you can on social media.
When anyone can view your profile and posts, you open yourself up to the interests of criminals and predators. Don’t geotag your photos, and don’t post that you are not home. Disable location services and make your account private.
Plan your route ahead of time.
Although this is no guarantee of safety, it can increase your awareness and reduce your vulnerability, and, in turn, susceptibility to danger. Walk confidently- don’t look like you’re lost, even if you are. Don’t use headphones and don’t stare at your phone screen. Learn routes ahead of time: download a campus map and use the GPS, avoiding any less frequented paths. Know your way around. Know where all the emergency communications phones are located.
Take a self-defense class.
All you need to know are a few basic defense techniques — you don’t necessarily need a black belt (but it helps). Most schools or gyms offer classes with professional instructors. You may even get more out of it if you ask a friend to take the class with you.
Mace and pepper spray are especially effective when defending yourself. If possible to have on hand, whistles are also good to bring attention to your situation if you are in trouble — and hopefully scare off your attacker.
Keep emergency cash on hand.
Sometimes ATM machines and debit/credit cards can malfunction. Having cash in your wallet can help you when you may least expect it.
Of course, some may laugh at this advice being given for a college campus, but alcohol compromises your judgment and senses, and therefore makes you more vulnerable to trouble. Not being in control of yourself makes you more susceptible to danger.
These are pertinent tips that all campus frequenters should know and can make all the difference when it comes to their own campus safety. Of course, as the property manager, you are responsible for overall campus safety and must take some measures into your own hands. Property managers can combat campus crime and further promote campus safety with emergency help phones. These instruments promote protection, serve as a crime deterrent and provide emergency response when needed. To learn more about how Kings III can assist in upgrading safety measures in your parking lot as well as on your entire property, visit www.kingsiii.com.