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Volume 68, Issue 56, Tuesday, November 12, 2002

Opinion
 

Staff Editorial



EDITORIAL BOARD

Ed De La Garza        Josh Gajewski       Nikie Johnson
         Geronimo Rodriguez          Keenan Singleton



 

Calling all Cougars

When the campus police can't answer the call and you're scurrying to your car, don't think the guy hiding behind the bush will pass up the chance to jump on your vulnerability.

With only 15 students working as part of the campus's Cougar Patrol, the UH safety service isn't offering much safety, and some unlucky students may stumble into such a perilous situation.

Should fearful students blame the UH Police Department for the campus' inadequate patrol staff? Perhaps not.

But the UHPD can't solve this problem without the help of the UH administration; a bigger budget is a start.

The Student Government Association and other campus organizations will surely see eye-to-eye on this issue, and be the first to find ways for UH to better fund the UHPD.

And instead of leaving their posts to taxi students around campus, police officers can worry about the guy hiding in the midst of one of the campus's many shadows.

Want to be a part of Cougar Patrol? This is where you can step up. Just call 713-743-0595 and you will be on your way to keeping your fellow schoolmates safe. UHPD Lt. Roger Byars reported to The Daily Cougar that late-night shifts are difficult to fill, which leaves students no other choice but to walk alone to their lonely cars.

And maybe the administration should step in.

Spreading the word about filling the empty patrol slots is a start. It would be a shame to wait for a student to get mugged or even raped.

In the meantime, with only a handful of students jumping to be a part of the Cougar Patrol, the UH officials should answer this emergency call by improvising for its shortcomings.

More light posts, emergency call boxes and perhaps even long-range surveillance cameras designated to span the campus' parking lots should do the trick. The administration should set some short-term goals regarding safety and meet them.

Even police officers should heed the call and tactfully stop students walking alone. After verifying they belong on campus, it would be nice to let them hitch a ride.

These are just a few ideas to deal with the safety woes at hand. This issue should be addressed and handled in full by next semester. 

Safety, of all things, should be a top priority, and not one of the administration's notorious long-range projects.

Until UH officials work to build a larger UHPD and Cougar Patrol staff, stay safe: walk with a friend and carry a big stick.

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