Making safety the priority

There are many important factors toward gaining a healthy college lifestyle: diet and exercise, sleep, stress management, academics, social life—the list goes on. But above all, we believe the safety of students needs to be the highest priority. Is it?

On Aug. 23, Keene Police Department made 43 arrests involving unlawful possession of drugs and or alcohol and resists of arrest.

Emma Contic / Graphics Editor

Emma Contic / Graphics Editor

Compare this to records from the month of July where most Keene State College students were not living in the Keene area. Police made 22 arrests for alcohol related incidents. Of course, when the population increases, it is more likely there will be an expansion of police activity.

According to a statement made by Campus Safety Director Amanda Warman, the first Thursday night of the year drew a large crowd  of safety and law enforcement on and off-campus.

According to Warman, on Labor Day weekend KPD was called for 20 arrests. These arrests dealt with drug and alcohol misconduct.

Though Campus Safety was involved and most concerned with on–campus related issues, which KSC students were most in danger? Were they students in residential halls or students walking the streets? Are students more bound to participate in illegal activity off-campus than when on KSC grounds?

When Campus Safety called KPD for back-up, were their services taken away from someone in imminent danger to deal with someone drinking underage? Did the underage drinking and partying take KPD away from a potentially more threatening situation off-campus?

What about the girl walking by herself at 3 a.m.?

Or the couple arguing on the corner of a street?

We ask these questions because we want to know where the focus lies.

The Equinox is not accusing Campus Safety or KPD of not doing their jobs. KPD has added two to three shifts to their schedule since the summer—an increase in police presence when KSC students return in the fall. We thank KPD for these efforts.

On the contrary, we are concerned about issues that merely result in a slap on the wrist versus circumstances that may leave a student in severe danger, such as the gunman on campus that occurred just last year. Reports of underage drinking are staggering. But how do they compare to the severity of intentional or uncontrollable violence?

It is the Equinox’s hope that KPD and even Campus Safety pay just as close attention to, if not more, the girl walking home alone on a dark, quiet Keene street.

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