HATTIESBURG - Administrators
and safety personnel at The University of Southern Mississippi continue
to strive to make the university's campus a safe and secure environment
for students, faculty and staff, and to help meet that goal, the
university is providing valuable personal safety information on
the Internet and in brochure form.
The information on the Southern Miss Web site and
in the brochure, titled "Maintaining a Safe and Secure Campus
Environment," shows how to use the campus police escort service
and contains information about the university's alcohol and firearm
policies. It also has telephone numbers for alcohol and drug-abuse
issues, among others. Included also are statistics of crimes committed
in the previous three years on campus and in areas immediately surrounding
"This information is an invaluable resource for
members of the university community who either want to take precautionary
safety measurers or are faced with situations that require assistance
from our security personnel, said Vrita Delaine, assistant to the
vice president for student affairs at Southern Miss.
University officials, including University Police
Department staff, joined together to produce this year's brochure.
Colleges and universities that participate in federal student financial
aid programs are required by law to produce such a document, following
the passage of the Jeanne Clery Act.
Jeanne Clery was a Lehigh University student who was
raped and killed in her dorm room in 1986. Her parents sought to
make public previous crimes that had been committed on the school's
campus - but had not been reported - as a way to help students become
more security conscious. The Clerys joined with other campus crime
victims to persuade Congress to pass the act, which was originally
known as the "Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act of 1990."
"There is information in the brochure that all
students and employees of the university need to know," said
Linda Parish of the University Police Department, who assists annually
in the production of the brochure.
Parish said the brochure also includes important emergency
phone numbers, as well as information about services available from
the Rape Crisis Center, area medical clinics and counseling services.
University Police safety programs, including the escort service,
are also covered in the brochure, along with information about the
popular RAD (Rape Aggression Defense) classes.
The brochure also contains information on how to access
statistics about registered sex offenders on the Internet through
the Mississippi Sex Offender Registry at www.dps.state.ms.us.
A copy of the brochure may be obtained from the Office
of Student Affairs in the R.C. Cook University Union, Room 219,
or at the University Police Department, located on the first floor
of Bond Hall. To access the brochure on the Southern Miss Web site,
go to www.usm.edu, click on the "publications" link, and
then click on the "Safety Compliance Brochure" link.