BAGUIO CITY – The City Council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance promoting crime and security awareness in all learning institutions and campuses in the city.
The ordinance, authored by Councilor Leandro B. Yangot, Jr., stated upon the effectivity of the local legislative measure, each eligible campus shall begin to collect this year and every year thereafter, prepare, publish and distribute through appropriate publications, to all current students, employees and to any applicant for enrolment or employment upon request, an annual security report containing information with respect to the campus security policies and campus crime statistics of the institution.
The information shall include a state of current campus policies regarding procedures and facilities for students and a report on criminal actions or emergencies occurring on the campus, including policies concerning the institution’s response to such reports; a statement of current policies concerning security and access to campus facilities, including dormitories inside the campus, and security considerations used in the maintenance of said facilities; a statement of current polices on campus law enforcement, including the enforcement authority of security personnel, including their work relationship with national and local agencies, and policies which encourage accurate and prompt reporting of all crimes to the police; a description of programs designed to inform students and employees about the prevention of crimes; statistics showing the occurrence on campuses to wit, murder, rape, physical injuries, robbery and sexual harassment, and a statement of policies regarding the possession, use and sale of alcohol, beverages and enforcement of underage drinking laws.
Under the proposed ordinance, the Office of the City Mayor shall review such statistics and task the Committee on Education of the City Council, in coordination with the representatives of the institutions of the higher education, to identify exemplary campus security policies, procedures and practices which have been proven to be effective in the reduction of campus crimes.
Yangot pointed out no institution shall deny to an alleged victim of any crime or violence, the result of any disciplinary proceedings conducted by the institution against the perpetrators with respect to such crime.
He added the proposal seeks to establish a program that would provide adequate and updated information for students, parents or guardians as well as the community, of all the learning institutions on their safety and security policies and procedures.
According to him, in some schools in the city, incidents of bullying, fraternity wars, deaths, physical harm and incapacity inflicted to members and non-members continue to hound the public, more so, the families victimized by either fraternity-related violence or any other cause.
Yangot emphasized it has been the policy of the local government to provide a safe and healthy environment for its constituents taking into consideration all the sectors in the community which include, among others, the learning institutions whether private or private.
By Dexter A. See