FIUPD Can Do More To Make Our Campus Safe

Jocelyn Carrasquillo/Contributing Writer

Here I am, a third-year student at FIU, just now learning that, since 2016, FIU has had an increase in reported cases of rape, drug arrests and stalking, among others.  

This shocking news made me realize that FIU isn’t really doing all it can to make the Modesto Maidique Campus a safe learning environment.

The Florida International University Police Department is required to publish an annual security and fire safety report; within the report for 2019, we can see that the different protective measures FIUPD has for its students is simply not enough. 

The report shows that on-campus housing does have safety measures – each student has a key to enter the front doors of the building and their personal living unit. Police officers also patrol the halls, with a Resident Assistant on duty each night.

While there are emergency call boxes around campus for students, faculty and staff use in dire situations, that’s not enough. If I’m calling FIUPD from a location near the Wellness and Recreation Center, the chance that an officer will reach the emergency call box location in time to help in a high-stakes situation is small. How can I have a sense of trust in a system for safety if I don’t see effort from FIUPD to ensure safety?

We also simply don’t see enough police officers patrolling FIU grounds at MMC to create a sense of safety for its people. While I go to MMC four days a week, I might see a police officer once a week as I walk between classes, libraries and work. A show of authority creates a sense of safety to decrease dangerous events. 

While there are benefits to having police officers concealed around campus, there are also benefits to having them visible. Criminals would be discouraged if they saw police officers patrolling the area; FIU could showcase their strong PD to ensure lower crime rates. 

FIU also offers countless programs to teach students, faculty and staff to stay safe from offenders, thefts and other dangers, but they can’t be effective if FIU doesn’t advertise them more to their population.

I have not once heard of the Rape Aggression Defense training offered by the FIUPD to all female students, faculty and staff. Nor have I heard of the Operation Book Stamp solution to prevent book thefts. FIU can make these programs more known to students and staff by promoting them in orientations or in-class visits in first-year classes alongside the Sexual Assault Prevention Training required for undergraduates.

I’m not trying to be Batman and stop crime on campus by myself, but I at least want to learn how to protect myself.



The opinions presented within this page do not represent the views of PantherNOW Editorial Board. These views are separate from editorials and reflect individual perspectives of contributing writers and/or members of the University community.

Featured photo from FIU Flickr.

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