What York University Has Done To Improve Safety In Recent Years

Janet K. Morrison, Vice-Provost Students recently met with college council presidents to discuss safety at York.

Janet Morisson, the new VP Students, sent this e-mail letter to all the college council presidents talking about improvements that the campus has made:


The safety and security of all members of the York University learning community is our first priority.  As you may be aware, we are a community of 55,000 students, faculty and staff and as a result faces the same kind of challenges as any small city -- including safety. We track crimes against persons annually, which includes sexual assaults, and look at them in context within our immediate area and the City of Toronto. In the recent annual per capita comparison the incidents per 1,000 population were as follows: 

Ø        City of Toronto - 11 
Ø        31 Division - 14 (the immediate York University area) 
Ø        York University -  2 

This represents a 15% decrease year over year at York. We feel this is definitely a step in the right direction.   

You also asked about what steps the University has and is taking to make our campus safer.  Three years ago, the President commissioned a comprehensive safety audit conducted by METRAC (Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children). There were over 100 recommendations in the report which the University is currently implementing including: 

Financial Investment:

·In 2011, York invested approximately $9.5 million in safety and security related expenses. As we continue to implement the METRAC recommendations, this figure will continue to grow, reflecting our ongoing commitment to safety.

Security Enhancements:

·The University recently hired 10 new security officials and new security supervisors, augmenting its security force by 30%. 
·York is committed to improved lighting on campus. In the last two years the University has spent over $400,000 improving lighting in key areas.
·York has over 600 CCTV cameras located across campus.
·York has over 220 emergency “blue” phones on campus. 
·Safety phones have been installed in classrooms with direct lines to the Security Control Centre.
·25 prominently located LCD emergency messaging screens are now in place on the Keele campus. A program is now underway to install the screens at all York’s residences and in 25 other locations.
·The expansion of York’s emergency messaging system, including the installation of a public address mass notification system. 

Safety & Security Planning 

· A Sexual Assault Initiatives Committee was established last year to bring together key groups offering services to victims and to coordinate victim support.
· A Management Safety Committee (MSC) chaired by Gary Brewer,
· Vice-President Finance & Administration was established in August 2010. Comprised of 20 senior administrators and managers, the MSC oversees the implementation of the METRAC audit’s recommendations. 
· In November 2010, York’s Community Safety Council (CSC), was established. The CSC’s

Posted by Andrew Bundas on July 20, 2012