In 2005 Yuba College reported one case of aggravated assault, 15 burglaries, two cases of illegal weapons possession, three drug law violations and three liquor law violations. It is unknown whether a bomb threat that was called in to Marysville’s campus from a Colorado based number was listed among these crimes.
Clear Lake campus reported three arson cases, and Woodland Community College reported three burglaries. Students can check the crime statistics for their campus through the link provided on the YCCD website to the Department of Education’s Campus Security Statistics.
To prevent crimes, the Yuba Community College District has staffed its police department with eight armed officers, who patrol the Marysville and Woodland campuses. YCCD police load their guns with real bullets instead rubber bullets as suggested by those opposed to arming the officers last year.
In a Prospector article that ran last year about arming YCCD police, Police Chief Wilkinson is quoted as saying, “The Yuba Community College District is a crisis-prone district and not a crisis-prepared district.”
As Woodland Community College transitions into a separately accredited institution, the safety of the students, faculty and staff ranks high among its priorities. The college is also located next to the Yolo County Jail where a prisoner escaped in August of this year.
The Yolo County Sheriff’s department immediately contacted the YCCD police, and Officer Paul Corbin assisted in a campus-wide search. The escapee was found shortly thereafter hiding around fenced construction.
The morning after the escapee incident, the President of WCC, Angela Fairchilds, sent out an email to inform the campus of what had happened. She explained that the escapee was a female prisoner who was being held in the minimum security section of the Yolo County Jail.
Fairchilds stated, “I know that I feel more secure in having our own police to help protect the campus community.” With the police car parked prominently in the front of the campus, officers are seen at varying hours patrolling the buildings and parking lots. Although the parking lot is well lit, Fairchilds said that YCCD police officers can escort students, faculty and staff to their cars after dark. The same option is available to students, faculty and staff at Yuba College.
This year WCC reported a theft at the construction site of the campus’s new Learning Resource Center. Rod Perry, the Director of Maintenance and Operations, estimated the cost for replacing the copper core cabling, including labor and materials, to be around $45000-50000. The contractor’s insurance company will cover the loss; however, the damage will delay the construction.
YCCD’s Police Chief Wilkinson could not be reached for comment regarding the ongoing investigation into the LRC theft.
Other precautions WCC’s faculty and staff participate in to improve safety on campus include CPR and fire extinguisher training.
This year Woodland’s Safety Committee is chaired by Stacey Cook, Dean of Student Services. Members include 10 others, from the college’s faculty and staff.
Woodland’s Safety Committee and Fairchilds have stressed that the call boxes located on the campus parking lot will be reinstated by December 2006.
WCC’s Safety Committee has also established that it would like to formulate an Emergency Response Plan. In case of an emergency, faculty, staff and students will be able to reference the plan quickly and figure what they should do in different emergency situations.
Safety Committee member Loretta Richard said, “Like the boy scouts, we too need to be prepared.” She explained that Woodland’s Emergency Response Plan would most likely be modeled after plans that are posted near doorways on Butte Community College’s campus.
Other safety plans include forming an emergency phone list, on which people who are CPR certified will be listed. There has also been talk of purchasing a defibrillator machine. Because these machines are used to deliver shocks to a patient whose heart has stopped beating, only those who have obtained certification for use of that particular machine will be authorized to use it.
While neither Yuba nor Woodland Community College has a college nurse, the WCC Safety Committee reports that one is currently being sought.
When discussing the nurse on campus during Woodland’s Safety Committee meeting on November 1 Cook said, “I don’t know the plans beyond this semester. We may contract with other health care providers, but nothing is confirmed yet.”
In the meantime several first aid kits will be purchased and distributed around the campus to provide band aids when needed.
If a student, faculty or staff member is suffering from an injury beyond the healing power of a band aid, he or she will be referred elsewhere for proper medical attention.