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Saturday, March 2
The Indiana Daily Student


Safety administrators encourage students to communicate needs

Andy Stephenson, IUPD captain, checks in with officers Joshua Sung, left, and Briana Guy Friday at IUPD station. After almost 20 years on the force, Stephenson said blue lights have only been used four times for legitimate emergencies.

Representatives from a variety of public health and safety-related departments in the IU and Bloomington communities gathered Tuesday evening at the Indiana Memorial Union to encourage students to form a group called IU Public Safety 

The group would be dedicated to strengthening relationships and communication with safety 

One of the primary goals of the group is to connect student members to Public Safety and Institutional Assurance staff members who have expertise in topics like social justice, safety communication and law 

Mark Bruhn, associate vice president for PSIA said the group will be useful for safety administrators when they are discussing issues that require student input.

“What we need to find out from students is how to maximize their safety,” 
Bruhn said.

IU Police Department Capt. Andy Stephenson said IUPD wants to use student feedback regarding safety and social concerns to help them do their jobs better.

“Who better to tell us how to do our jobs than the students we serve?” 
Stephenson said.

Stephenson said there is also a strong social justice element to the IUPD’s initiatives to improve relationships with IU students. Complete transparency within the student community of IUPD and its operations is one of the topics Stephenson emphasized.

Lucas Letner, a student in the School of Public Health, said he came to the meeting because of his interest in making Americans care more about safety.

“America is too reactive of a nation, and I think we need to become more proactive,” Letner said.

Lloyd Graham, an assistant director at Residential Programs and Services for diversity initiatives, came to the meeting as a facilitator to provide information about his experiences with both students and IUPD.

“My goal with the work I do is to create a more inclusive campus climate,” 
Graham said.

Tracy James, communications manager for PSIA, said finding out what safety information students want and how they want to receive it is a high priority for PSIA.

“We try to provide information to students and staff to help them be safer,” James said, “That can include basic information about locking doors, active shooter scenarios and self-defense.”

James said students have recommended sending out a monthly newsletter that includes safety tips and crime information.

Working with IU Communications to broadcast a Snapchat story about earthquake preparedness is one of the ways PSIA is planning to engage more students in safety communication, and James said they plan to translate the story for international students.

“We want to find unique ways to share information with them that’s translated into their native tongue,” James said.

Students interested in joining IU Public Safety Partners can contact Tracy James at

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