Service changes have been implemented at UTM Campus Police Services alongside a newly launched program offered by the force.
Launched on November 9, the new WorkAlone program allows members of the UTM community to remain in contact with Campus Police through radios when they’re working alone or in an isolated area on campus.
“This program isn’t just for somebody who’s afraid of being assaulted,” said Robert Messacar, manager of the Campus Police Services at UTM, who also informed The Medium that the service is available 24/7 and students do not need to explain to campus police why they feel the need to use the service in order to take advantage of it.
“You say, ‘I would like the radio,’ and we’ll give you the radio. No questions asked,” said Messacar.
Eight radios are currently available to sign out for the program, a number that may increase depending on demand.
Also updated by Campus Police Services, the WalkSafer program is now available 24/7.
The safety program allows members of the UTM community to be escorted to their destination on campus by campus police staff free of charge.
“It’s definitely underutilized,” said Messacar of the WalkSafer service. “We don’t want people to think that if it’s not 3 o’clock in the morning, [they] shouldn’t be using this service,” said Messacar.
According to Messacar, Campus Police Services faces difficulties spreading the word about the WalkSafer program.
“We’re in an environment where it’s hard to tell people about things because everyone is so inundated with all the different information,” said Messacar. “Many times I give safety presentations and people would say this is the first time that [they’re] hearing about it.”
Also new are Campus Police vehicles purchased to act as patrol cars and assist with incidents on campus such as emergencies.
“If an ambulance for example comes on campus, then what will happen is that one officer will go to assist the person that needs the ambulance and the other officer will go to the entrance and bring the ambulance to where the person is,” said Messacar. “We want to get them to where they want to go as quickly as possible.”