LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Help promote campus safety by increasing number, visibility of Blue Lights
Since we are in the winter months, it tends to get dark outside very quickly. It is already pitch black out by 6 p.m. With this darkness comes the fear of students walking around campus at night.
I can’t speak for every other student here at Central Michigan University, but I can speak for myself and many other girls: It is terrifying to walk alone at night.
I know that CMU has “blue lights” around campus for emergencies that connects you to the CMU Police Department, but throughout my time here so far, I believe we need to increase the number and accessibility of blue lights.
As I was walking home from the Charles V. Park Library one night last week with my roommate, we decided to pay close attention to the number of blue lights we saw along our walk. We were shocked to realize that on our walk from the library to the Towers residence halls, we only saw two blue lights. This is about a 10-minute walk across campus.
If we want to ensure the safety of the students here at CMU, I would hope to see more blue lights around campus.
CMU’s website lists the locations of blue lights around campus. I found out there are only 26 blue lights to cover a campus that is 480 acres. That is only about one light for every 18 acres. So, statistically speaking, if you felt threatened while walking alone, you would have to run quite a bit to find a blue light. Also, you would most likely be lugging around a heavy backpack that would make it harder to run the long distance.
The locations of the already existing lights are hard to see. Most of them are on the back sides of buildings and not out in the open for easy access. The new lights should be placed right next to the sidewalks with a brighter light that makes them more visible.
If these lights are easier to see for students walking across campus, it would make all of us feel a lot safer walking around at night. With all of the money we pay to go to school here, we earn the right to feel safe walking around campus.
To make this happen, students should come together to let the school know that we don’t feel safe walking around campus. CMU police could help us by installing more blue lights around campus in more visible locations.
This is a simple project that could be pricey but won’t take long at all to complete. In the long run, the benefits of the feeling of safety for the students who live here outweigh the issue of money. I hope you will all come together with me to demand change on this issue.