Alex Wittman did a great job in bringing awareness to the attempted assault that occurred on campus Oct. 23. The first step toward change is awareness. This type of information is what social workers need to make a difference in the lives of others. Unfortunately, one of our colleagues had to suffer psychological trauma caused by the perpetrator. However, she was able to escape, but what if she hadn’t? What if…? No one wants to think about that.
Would we as a campus community frantically be trying to figure out what we could have done to prevent this? Probably…this brings me to the point of this letter. There is something we can do. We can do our utmost to provide the best possible solution.
The Clery Act of 1990, named after Jeanne Clery, a 19 year old who was raped and murdered on her campus in 1986, provided a standard model that universities were required to use when reporting annual crime statistics on campuses. The act also provided a recommendation for improving safety on campuses.
One recommendation was the implementations of a mobile duress system which would provide campus-wide protection to students, faculty and staff. The system would tie in to the infrastructure of the campus security system already in place, and would provide heightened security for our community. This is why social work students in Dr. Matthews’ Social Work 320 class (Ali Ruttle, Terri Baldwin and Liz Seager) have been advocating to enhance campus security with a mobile duress system. Thank you for allowing us to share this valuable information with the campus community.
Ferris social work student