Leaders at SIU are continuing to work to keep students as safe as possible
CARBONDALE, Ill. (KFVS) - The University Police Department is trying to learn from previous campus shootings.
Southern Illinois University in Carbondale has regular training to prevent a shooting on it’s campus.
Tuesday, we spoke with the SIU Chief of Police Benjamin Newman.
“I lay awake at night thinking that very thing, is how do we prevent the next incident from occurring and certainly on our college campus,” Newman said.
Newman said he and his team are constantly going through active shooter training.
“Our preparedness efforts are based upon an active engaged community, and of course national standards. While SIU is prepared for emergencies, we know that prevention and awareness are the greatest impact on our campus safety,” Newman said. “So, we do provide training too, in identifying warning signs. Just a quick note, faculty and students and staff are encouraged to identify, and report troubling behavior.”
We also spoke to some students at SIU.
“I feel like we have a lot of staff that’s constantly walking around, DPS does a really good job at keeping us safe,” said SIU sophomore Joshua Bellows.
Bellows said the thought of an active shooter is in the back of his mind.
“I feel like it is something to be cognizant about, like at least know what to do, where to go if there is an active shooter on campus,” Bellows said.
SIU senior Charley McColpin said she does feel safe on campus.
“They have these little booths set up around that you can call emergency contacts and then they have the Saluki patrol--they kind of walk around campus daily,” McColpin said.
Chief Newman said University leaders meet regularly to assess threats and implement safety measures around campus. He said an active shooter threat could evolve quickly.
“I would remind everybody--visitors, campus, students and staff for sure--that if they see something, say something if you see any suspicious signs or signs of suspicious activity,” Newman said. “Alert local law enforcement--that just doesn’t apply to our campus at SIU, but be prepared to report and be an active participation in our safety measures on campus.”
Chief Newman shares his condolences with the Michigan State Community. He said SIU will help in any way to support a fellow campus community.
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