On Oct. 1, the University Police sent out a notice to campus in an email, “Lafayette City Police responded to a report of an armed robbery at an apartment complex on Tulane Ave”.
This is within a few blocks of campus, but outside of the jurisdiction of the university police.
The email goes on to read, “the resident stated someone entered his apartment while he was sleeping, punched him in the face, and stole his cell phone and money from his wallet. There was no sign of forced entry, and the victim believes he may have left his apartment door unlocked.”
At the bottom of the report is an additional message, “This information is being provided in an effort to comply with the federal Jeanne Clery Act.”
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette puts out an Annual Security Report every October, in accordance with the Clery Act of 1990.
The university’s webpage on the subject reads “The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act is the landmark federal law that requires colleges and universities across the United States to disclose information about crime on and around their campuses.”
This means that institutions of higher education are required to make crime and fire incidents publically available through the U.S. Department of Education, which has a webpage for looking up and comparing these statistics.
As part of keeping people on campus informed of these events and the Act, incidents are reported to the community at large through some means.
The university’s webpage on the report says that it “includes statistics for the previous three years concerning reported crimes that occurred on campus, in certain off-campus buildings or property owned or controlled by the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and on public property within, or immediately adjacent to and accessible from the campus.”
The same webpage says that “the report also includes institutional policies concerning campus security, such as policies concerning alcohol and drug use, crime prevention, the reporting of crimes, sexual assault and other matters including fire safety.”
These statistics are currently available for 2016, 2017 and 2018 on the Department of Education’s database.
This Act allows for members of the university to be more informed about what is happening near the campuses they work and learn at, both through posts and notices by the University Police and through making the information available for research.
Before this law was passed, specific information could be significantly more difficult to get access to. One could look for such statistics for the cities that institutions were in, but not around the campuses specifically.
This allows one to focus on the situations closest to the institutions in question, showing if the crimes were close to campus or distant to it.
This Act is responsible for many of the efforts to keep the campus community more informed about crimes on and near campus.