If your off-campus party gets out of hand this weekend, you might hear a Penn administrator knocking on the door.
After an increase in hospital transports and several reported instances of off-campus violence this semester, including the incident that resulted in Penn football wide receiver Cam Countryman , a College junior, being charged with simple assault, the Division of Public Safety is forming a task force to reduce off-campus violence and excessive alcohol consumption.
Starting this weekend, administrators from the Campus Environment Task Force — including coaches from Penn Athletics, staff from the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and members of other University departments — will ride along with Penn Police officers as they patrol off-campus areas.
Officers from the Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement will also be working with Penn Police and patrolling off-campus over the weekends, Vice President for Public Safety Maureen Rush said. A representative from the BLCE did not respond to a request for comment on Wednesday.
The purpose of the ride alongs is to give administrators first-hand insight into issues the task force hopes to address — including fights between students, excessive alcohol transports and people wandering home while drunk.
“As we continue to look at these issues, I think it’s important that [administrators] be able to see it firsthand,” Rush said.
Rush said that members of the task force are from Penn departments that work with students on daily basis. She noted that Penn Athletics is involved because student athletes have been involved in recent incidents.
If officers riding with administrators see house parties getting too loud or too full, they might approach the house to try to speak to a host.
“When houses come to our attention,” Rush said, “they’re going to get a knock on the door and they’ll get educated.”
Officers will be carrying pamphlets with information about liquor crimes, advice on how to be good neighbors when throwing a party and a reminder about Penn’s medical amnesty policy — that students in need of medical attention won’t get in trouble if they call for help.
Rush emphasized that this initiative is about education, and that students need to acknowledge that relaxation is more than drinking. “It doesn’t have to be all about alcohol,” Rush said.Comments powered by Disqus
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