Recently, Samford students and staff received the Annual Campus Security Report and Annual Fire Safety Report for 2021. These reports showed that many of the crimes on campus have declined in recent years.
Samford’s crime statistics have decreased since 2019 and 2020, except in the cases of burglaries, alcohol and drug violations.
“2021 was really the first time in almost two full seasons that anything happened as far as activities on and off campus,” said Samford police chief Tommy Taylor. “The more activities you have, no matter what the activity is, the higher your numbers are going to be.”
The report “ provides students, employees, and guests with information about crimes and other Clery-governed sexual misconduct that occurs on Samford University campus property,” as well as other important public locations off campus.
“One of the things that we have done in an effort to deal with these types of issues is to be more proactive in our approach with residential life, Greek life and athletics,” Taylor said. “We try to make the information as readily available to the campus at large. We have tried to be more proactive in our engagement and educational outreach to several groups. I’m hopeful that this will have an impact on our 2022 data.”
The Samford Department of Public Safety and Emergency Management (DPSEM) is located on Samford’s campus. The Annual Report states that, “The DPSEM has 19 members including a chief, command staff, patrol officers, dispatchers, and administrative support.”
“All of our officers are sworn, certified officers by the state of Alabama, and this campus is our city,” Taylor said. “We have a far stronger police presence than at some other agencies and schools. Here, we are extremely engaged, and I think that is key.”
Other measures are also being put into place to keep Samford’s campus as safe as possible. The message that campus security has been trying to put out is, “If you see something, say something.”
Taylor maintained that, no matter how many times a student, employee or contractor calls, the officers on campus will always respond. His hope for this is to encourage students to call anytime they feel a need to, which will aid officers in arriving at scenes more quickly.
Though the fall 2022 semester began a month ago, Chief Taylor mentioned small changes he has already noticed compared to previous semesters.
“So far this fall, we are getting more calls for service,” Taylor said. “We have officers responding to calls at a higher level. The more we teach and present in front of groups, the better our relationships are with the campus community. An increase in call volume leads to an increase in police presence, and that presence means an increase in engagement.”
To reach Samford campus police, call 205-726-2020.
Arts & Life Editor