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McGill Reporter
January 22, 2004 - Volume 36 Number 09
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To the editor,

I'm writing to you as a concerned McGill student deeply affected by recent violence on our campus. Thursday, January 8th, a serious physical assault occurred on a close friend of mine outside of Gert's Bar in the Shatner Building. As of today, Saturday the 10th, he has required two serious surgeries to repair damage sustained to an eye. Where were our campus security forces? How and why has our student union spent thousands on indoor lighting, tv's, couches and computers (all relatively unnecessary "renovations") without ensuring proper security for McGill's students inside and outside their own student union building. By having a single security guard or video camera stationed outside of the Shatner building, this tragedy may have been prevented. The physical altercations which occur outside of Gert's each and every week, every year, could be documented and something could be done about the violence plaguing our campus bar. On the first Thursday night of our return to school, a young man's life has been forever changed by the careless action of another young person who, due to the lack of security on campus, has gone unidentified. The McGill community needs and deserves proper protection, from unwanted outsiders and even sometimes from ourselves.

Jessica Trisko
Honours BA U3

Kate Rhodes, President, Students' Society of McGill University responds:

The Students' Society of McGill University Safety Committee is currently performing a security and safety review of our building to expand our security services. This committee would benefit from dedicated students, such as yourself, in its membership, and I urge you to become involved. One of the projects they are addressing is the installation of more security cameras on the William Shatner University Centre. The external building premises fall under the auspices of McGill Security, and we are working closely with them to keep students safe on campus.

The SSMU operates a security team for its pub and parties, which can also be rented out by other student associations for their campus events. This security team is composed primarily of experienced students, and they are currently being trained in a refresher course by a professional security company to fine-tune and improve their skills. We are also reviewing our internal security team structure. For our semi-annual Four Floors party, a professional security company has been hired to oversee the event. Student safety is paramount at the SSMU, and we are working together to counter the incidents of the last few weeks.

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