Security issues are factors that put lives of people at risks. The University of Southern California is an institution that was hit by cases of deaths related to poor security measures. For this reason, security measures need to be formulated and effectively implemented in order to facilitate for smooth running of activities. These measures need to be developed based on the various factors that exist within such an institution and have potential to cause harm within the institution. These measures should be guided be effective policies that facilitate for sustainable security within the university that takes into considerations all the factors important in the institution.
Campus security is a very important aspect in a particular university. This aspect is mandatory for the institution’s activities since it involves safeguarding the lives of students in school. Campus safety encompasses the safety of every individual associated with the institution; from staff, students, visitors and all the other people within the campus' premises. It is the responsibility of that particular university to make sure personal safety and security is well maintained and ensures that the environment is conducive for the university activities.
Universities are characterized by large population of students and with changing times, the population dynamics has been changing on a very great scale. Increased diversity of students, as well as new traditions, have greatly influenced the nature of security in universities especially in America, which the country characterized by highest rates of immigration from across the entire globe. These changes are very important and necessitate for more measures by security agents within this institution. There is great need for both reactive as well as proactive measures that create conducive environments for students and other people as well as be effectively responsive to security issues in universities (Major Issues Campus Security Officers Will Face Today, 2014). The nature of the university population is usually characterized by diverse people from very different walks of life from within the country and beyond.
This diverse nature also applies to the relevant authorities in the institution. This diversity creates much dynamism in terms of behaviours, characters actions, and this becomes the great challenge to security agencies around campus premises (Ball, 2014). This results in too much effort in security protection. These challenges are also expansive in nature. It has changed security systems from, security officers who act behind scenes to ones that take part in other multiple roles that creates more contact with students in campuses making it easier and also increase control over situations (11 Components of a Secure School Front Entrance, 2014).
Some of the issues that relate to lack of security in campuses include; diversity in culture, which has a lot of cases involving discriminations between people belonging to different, cultures (Major Issues Campus Security Officers Will Face Today, 2014). This factor is. As a result, in the diversity in the university population. Most of the staff, visitors and the students come from completely different backgrounds with different beliefs and traditions. These differences sometimes lead to discriminations (Ball, 2014). This results to lots of security issues that require effective, proactive as well as reactive measures by security officers with university premises.
Gender discrimination is also another security issue that is found within campuses. Sexual identities sometimes result to conflicts that result from discrimination (11 Components of a Secure School Front Entrance, 2014). There have also been changes in gender identification over the years with more extensions such as populations of lesbians, gays, transgendered and bisexuals. All these groups fall under gender and are present in campus premises. For this reason, these diverse natures of gender identification result to challenge characterized with some forms of conflicts and discrimination which put security at risk. It is, therefore, important for security agents to have knowledge and experience necessary to handle such situations given the fact that gender issues have great sensitivity and require great considerations in security policy development and implementation.
Use of drugs and alcohol is another security issue that is very common in university. Alcohol and drugs are always present in campuses, and they create lots of problems. Use of drugs and excessive consumption of alcohol catalysis actions of violence and puts the safety of other people at great risks. Drugs and alcohol have been one of the biggest security problems in universities, because of the fact that these substances are very available, common and highly used by university student. Their use and consumption have been one of the hardest things for university security. With prevention strategies for use of drugs and heavy consumption of alcohol in place, student still abuses them (Major Issues Campus Security Officers Will Face Today, 2014).
It is therefore very important for security officers in campuses to have good knowledge on the management of those under influence in order to have effective precautionary measures on how to handle these situations and develop a more conducive environment in terms of safety. Another security issue in campuses is abuse (Major Issues Campus Security Officers Will Face Today, 2014). This aspect involves situations such as assaults on other students, verbal abuse, bullying, rape, cyber bulling involving social media, emails and text messages and also stalking. These factors are very common in university and are all attributes of the interactions between students, staff as well as the visitors. It is an aspect that creates a lot of security issues in campuses and lack of enough contact by security officers with the students has created lots of security issues (Major Issues Campus Security Officers Will Face Today, 2014).
These are all factors that are very common in these institutions and are involved in the many cases of security issues characterized by universities in the country and across the globe. It is, therefore, very important for security agencies within the campus to have proper knowledge and experience about these factors and be able to handle them in the most sustainable manner. Security policies are very important because the develop security action plans for the protection of students, faculty, visitors and staff from insecurity in the institutions (Ball, 2014). Together with university laws, security policies would guide security officers on the most appropriate action, either proactive or reactive on handling the security issues in university, taking considerations of the diverse nature of the population in terms of race, culture and traditions (Major Issues Campus Security Officers Will Face Today, 2014).
Protection in universities has become a very complex task. This is because of the lack of control of security issues as a result of the dynamism in actions, characters and behaviours of visitors, students and staff and this is attributed to the diverse nature of the population.
The university of southern California is an example of a university that has been affected by issues of insecurity, and this has resulted to the deaths of three students; Xinran Ji, Ying Wu and Ming qu. Their deaths were a clear indicator of security discrepancies and the lack of proper security measures that would have prevented these cases from happening. They were cases of homicides that shocked the whole school and put the campus security on the spotlight. Loopholes in the security sector in the campus may have resulted to the cases. Some of the possible loopholes include; lack of proper management of the institution’s entrance. The entrance is one significant point that controls the movement of items, materials and also people inside and outside the university. Poor management of the entrance through lack of proper manning and poor security checks reduce the effectiveness of prevention of security issues in the university.
Weapons can easily pass through and into the institutions, and they could be used for causing harm (11 Components of a Secure School Front Entrance, 2014). Drugs can also be easily brought in from outside and into the institution and could have created the influence for violence that resulted to the death cases in the university. People from outside the campus with unclear motive should also easily pass through and exerted their unclear influence that might have resulted to the insecurity cases. Another security discrepancy involves lack of proper surveillance that is very important for monitoring activities taking place within university premises. Surveillance involves use of cameras at strategic points in the institution that captures activities taking place. Regular patrols by security officers are another form of surveillance. Lack of proper surveillance makes it very easy for people to commit crimes involving security issues; this is because of the fat that they do it because they know that they can easily get away with it. Surveillance increases the visibility by security officials.
Surveillance keeps an eye on conditions in the university and lack of it reduces the effectiveness of security measures because of lack of evidence as well as proactive chances of enhancing security in the university. Another discrepancy exists where there are no clear records of the people within the university premises. This lack of record reduces the control of security officers over security issues whereby culprits can easily escape due to lack of proper records. All these create a very high chance for the occurrence of security issues that could have led to the deaths of the three students in the university. From the above information it is clear that security is a very important aspect for an institution and in this case the university of southern California which is an institution characterised by a great number of people from different walks of life.
All the security issues explained above require proper awareness on their nature, as well as sensitivity in the causing harm. The need for measures involving security is, therefore, greatly required for the university of southern California in order to prevent and to control security issues in the university with the aim of reducing cases such as the one experienced. One factor to consider in the quest to develop solutions is the importance of the security officers. These officers play a major role in the upholding of security in the institution. They should therefore be trained well and enough to keep track of the diverse nature of university settings and also be able to take necessary proactive as well as reactive measures as far as security is concerned (Ball, 2014).
These officers need to incorporate other aspects outside their training in the process. This includes, becoming more involved with the institution’s activities so that they can have clear understanding of activities, behaviours and characteristics of students. They should also have the capacity in terms of authority, knowledge and experience in maintaining a secure environment in the institution (Ball, 2014).
Another solution to the problem of security would include the proper control access points to the institution with the collection of information of the people coming in and out. Having this record would be instrumental in reactive responses to security issues. This would also control the access to the institution of other people other than the students and stuff. This would control the time that visitors are within the premises and would help reduce insecurity cases from outside sources. Access control can also be done through having a strong perimeter fence surrounding the institution that would help keep outsiders out of the institution. Having a strong perimeter fence would facilitate for proper entry into the institution that would be through visible areas under good surveillance.
Another solution related to the perimeter fencing would be the reduction of access points. This is very important because reducing them increase security by reducing chances of entry by people from outside would cause insecurities in the institution. This would reduce cases of forced entry and would raise the level of security in the university. the management of visitors is also another factor to consider in the process of securing the intuition from harm (Lashley, 2008, p. 198). Visitors should always be registered once they enter the premises. This is important for monitoring and effective identification in case of anything. this is a form of security management that is very important and would be effective in increasing the security levels of the institution and would cater for the security of the visitors as well as the students and staff within the university.
Use of surveillance cameras within the institution would also be an effective solution. This is because the cameras provide better sight of the activities taking place within the organisation. Having cameras reduce security risks because people get the feeling of being watched and recorded. Surveillance also increases responsiveness to security issues because of easy detection. Another solution would be the installation of emergency call boxes within the premises that would facilitate for quick emergency response as a result of a clear channel of communication. Having these boxes readily available would be important for security tightening through warning. Another solution would be the increase in awareness to the students and the staff on the importance and the need for security measures (Lashley, 2008, p. 200).
They should have knowledge of the effective security measures and responses that would help in the prevention as well as the control of security issues within the university. Other solutions include electronic systems that control the access to various parts of the institution. This would involve the use of electronic verification for easy access and would help limit entry by people from outside or unauthorized persons in those particular premises (Ball, 2014).
The implementation of the necessary measures is very important. This implementation need to be guided by policies that the institution must develop and formulate for security measures within the premises. These policies involve statements of actions that would be guided by the institution’s laws as well as laws from the public. Formulation of these policies is very important and should result to the development of efficient policies that would provide maximum desired results at low costs. The policies should be effective in addressing the necessary policy issues regarding security and propose for the adoption of the best available options to be used in the prevention as well as the mitigation of security problems (Muller, Young and Vogt, 2007, p.96). Together with the development of capacity through use of technology in the form of state of the art equipments, the lives of students in the university of southern California would be protected from any form of harm.
The involvement of the students, as well as the staff, would be a very significant step towards the solution of the security problem in the institution. The staff and students are among the stakeholders in the institution. Their consideration in policy formulation in the form of their points of view would greatly help. This aspect would make the management of the security problem a bottom up approach that solves the problem from the root. Since they are the ones directly affected by insecurity, having the knowledge of the security issues within the institution as provided by them would be very important. This would very much help in the policy formulation because it would result to the development of efficient policies that are cost effective.
Stakeholder considerations important in taking into account all the factors associated and influencing the problem at stake and results to more flexibility in tackling problems in the university setting characterized by lots of dynamism. The process of stakeholder involvement also creates a sense of involvement in the whole project, and this is important because it would facilitate for better cooperation that would lead to the better result. At the same time, it would provide the necessary information to them on the measures addressed, and the policy formulated on how the security issue will handle (Ball, 2014).
This is because the lives of people are at stake. Because of poor security, three students lost their lives in the institution. This was a clear indicator of the existence of discrepancies in the institution’s security. Some of the discrepancies that exist in such a situation includes; poor surveillance as a result of lack of technology necessary for the monitoring of the premises (Ball, 2014). Lack of proper management of access points is also another form of discrepancy that does not effectively regulate the entry and exit of people into and out of the institution. Another discrepancy involves the lack of proper polices aimed at the prevention and the control of security issues. All this factors if absent, result to security risks that may put the lives of people within the institution at risk. In addition to the discrepancies, there are factors that lead to the development of security issues within such an institution.
They include the use of drugs and alcohol which catalyses violence and may result to insecurity, cases of assault in the form of bullying, rape and verbal assaults. Another factor is gender discrimination that leads to risk of harm (Lashley, 2008, p. 195). All these factors are significant and proper knowledge about them would help in the reduction of risk of harms associated with insecurities. However, there are important security measures that need to be taken in order to safeguard the lives of the people within the university. These factors range from technological to policy factors, and all play a very important role in safeguarding the lives of people.
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