As the Fall Semester draws to a close, the day light hours get shorter and shorter. Most of us have our college courses during the day and possibly would not even think about our Personal Safety. Everyone should be thinking about their safety at all times. Most people think “It’s day light. I’m Okay”. No, you are not! There are all sorts of things to think about for your safety especially as a female. If being loaded down with books, folders, pencils, and a purse you are a possible target. Walking, texting and not paying attention to the surroundings you are a possible target. Take into consideration that so many people make themselves vulnerable without really knowing it. Slight cues that some attackers pick up on could cost you your life. Be aware of your surroundings, walk with your head held high and with confidence.
Here are some steps to take so you can protect yourself:
1. Walk with friends in well lit areas. Take a different route every day.
2. If you are by yourself walking to the car, check under the car at a distance for someone hiding before going to the driver’s door. Check the back seat area before getting in to make sure no one is hiding there.
3. Carry around campus only what you need. Leave your personal belongings in the trunk of your car. Don’t leave expensive items where someone can see them and break into your vehicle.
4. Carry your car keys like a weapon between your fingers. You could do some real damage to someones eyes or up under the jaw.
5. Wear comfortable clothes and shoes. You may have to run away and if you are wearing high heels and a short skirt, the attacker has a better chance of catching you.
6. If you are attacked, do everything you can to prevent the assailant from taking you to a secluded area.
7. If you are attacked hit your attacker in a vulnerable spot such as the groin, the eyes, knees or throat. Yell “FIRE” instead of “HELP”. There is a better chance that people will show up.
8. Take a self defense class. Check the local paper in the community section. Also check the phone book under self defense.
9. Let people know where you are, what time you will be home, how long you will be, call when you get to your destination and call when you are leaving.
10. If you do not feel safe, call the campus police for an escort. They will be more than happy to help. The emergency call boxes are patched through the campus office and through to the Yuba County Sheriff’s Department. They know exactly which call box you are calling from.
At a recent forum, Officer John Osbourn of the Yuba College campus police department stated they are now implementing IP address cameras around the campus. This will help them see what is going on without having to leave the campus station. Registered sex offenders taking classes on campus must register each and every semester within 5-10 days with the campus police through the Sex Offender Program. Just this Fall Semester alone 4 or 5 people were arrested for failing to register with the campus police.
This article was featured in the Prospector Winter 2011 Print Edition.