NORTH PHILADELPHIA - The conversation around safety, on and off campus at Temple, continued Thursday, as the university gave an update on new safety measures.
Safety has been on the minds of students, their families and university staff after several off-campus shootings near the North Philadelphia campus this school year. Officials are trying to address concerns with a first of its kind campus safety briefing,
"The safety of our community includes students, employees, faculty, staff and our neighbors here, in North Philadelphia, is hands-down our number one priority," Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Ken Kaiser stated.
Just Tuesday, a 21-year-old man was shot more than eight times on North 9th Street, just off Temple’s campus.
Kaiser is the COO at Temple. He acknowledges the university has faced challenges in the past six to seven months, but they are addressing those issues, beginning with a new program to add to the already existing 1,000 plus cameras on campus he says are monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
"We’ve started a grant program with landlords in our patrol area where we are reimbursing $2,500 for lighting improvements and camera improvements and new cameras," Kaiser explained.
Temple freshman Ally Ryder commends what Temple is doing. "I appreciate Temple trying to step up in the way of security. I think the security that probably makes me feel most safe on campus is the bike police because they’re the most mobile out there. You can actually see them."
Sophomore Kimberlee Cliver disagrees. "I don’t think they do enough. I think there could be more police presence off-campus, like on the corners. That’s where all the students are. They’re typically just on campus and at nighttime. Students aren’t really here."
Kaiser says other programs will soon launch with nearby landlords, including a ratings system.
"Require landlords to meet certain criteria to be included on the Temple website and so it would be transparent for families and they would know what these landlords have done to keep their properties safe and clean," Kaiser added.
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