NU to install more lights, add officers

Northwestern officials sent an e-mail Thursday night to students, faculty and staff on the Evanston Campus to reassure them of more security measures the administration is taking.

According to the e-mail, signed by Vice President for Business and Finance Eugene Sunshine, the university increased the number of officers patrolling near and on campus during nighttime hours. The Evanston Police Department also is patrolling areas where various robberies and assaults occurred.

The university also is upgrading lighting on campus with higher wattage bulbs and more fixtures on Emerson Street, near the Foster-Walker Complex and around 1835 Hinman dorm. Four new emergency telephones also will be installed west of Deering Library, near Swift Hall and Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, and along Arts Circle Drive. Associated Student Government officers and student group leaders helped to determine the locations of the phones in a “safety walk” the group took last week.

“We very much hope that the individuals responsible for the recent crimes are apprehended as quickly as possible and that these incidents, which are definitely unusual, will cease,” Sunshine wrote.

The changes come after nine incidents of attacks on students, including purse snatchings, robberies and assaults. These figures do not include the allegedly fabricated hate crime attack against Communication freshman Xander Saide.

University President Henry Bienen sent an e-mail to the NU community last Friday outlining recent attacks on and near campus and security methods administration officials are taking to combat the crimes. Sunshine said his e-mail to students Thursday night is intended to provide an update with more details.

“We believe information is what’s wanted,” Sunshine said.

ASG President Mike Fong said student groups and campus leaders have been doing a good job communicating the university’s new security plans to constituents. University officials also have been very proactive, he said.

“Between the hate crimes and safety issues,” Fong said, “students have become increasingly active in the community and are working with administrators to come up with feasible solutions.”

Tamara Kagel, ASG’s student services vice president, said the university has responded very quickly to requests and has increased need for security. The thousands of dollars spent on fortifying security shows that administrators are “willing to invest in safety,” she said.