April 07, 2014

2014 Spring Safety Update

To: The Campus Community
From: Marlon C. Lynch, Associate Vice President for Safety, Security, and Civic Affairs & Chief of Police
Subject: Fall Safety Update
Date: April 7, 2014

As we progress through this academic year, I would like to update you on some of our new and ongoing initiatives to improve safety on campus and in our surrounding communities.

Last year marked an all-time low in violent crime numbers in the University’s patrol area. While this trend continues in a downward direction, please remember that spring often brings an increase in criminal activity on campus and throughout Chicago. We encourage you to stay alert and be aware of your surroundings at all times. As the weather improves, you will notice the University’s Police Department patrolling the area by bike. The UCPD bike patrol allows for more flexible and environmentally sustainable travel throughout campus and the surrounding community. Spring weather also results in more members of our community using bicycles to travel on and around campus. When riding your bike, please remember your helmet. This academic year has seen an increase in the number of bicycle accidents on or near campus. In some of these accidents, the riders were not wearing helmets and required medical attention as a result. Always stay alert and avoid distractions like headphones or cell phones while riding your bike and remember to obey all traffic lights and signs. Install multiple reflectors on your bicycle and wear brightly colored clothing, a reflective vest, or flashing light so you are visible to motorists at night.

The University will be increasing the number of security officers posted near several University residential properties both on and off campus over the next several weeks. The new security posts are primarily at or near University residence halls and while schedules will vary based on location, most will be staffed between 4 p.m. and 2 a.m.

To further enhance our presence in the campus community, the UCPD opened a field office at 1411 E. 53rd Street. This office supports officers on patrol, provides direct crime prevention services to the growing business district on 53rd Street, and serves as a location for community policing meetings.

Lastly, the Department of Safety & Security recently launched a new website to improve the way we share information and engage with the campus community. It is our hope that the new site will make it easier to find important updates and learn about the services we provide. Visit the new website at safety-security.uchicago.edu for more information.

If you have any specific safety or security concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me. I wish you a safe and productive spring.