AAMU holds rally to talk with students about public safety

NORMAL, Ala. - Some Alabama A&M University students are worried following reports of sexual assaults on or around campus lately.

A&M President, Dr. Andrew Hugine, addressed the student body in a letter earlier this week, outlining new or updated safety procedures. You may read the letter here.

But A&M campus police and security want students to know they're in good hands. Still, they told students at a safety rally Thursday that safety is everyone's job.

"Safety is everyone's responsibility," said Officer Brittany Powell. "We can not do our job alone without the community's help."

Officers asked students to always have a buddy if walking around campus in the evening or during the night. The office of public safety can also provide escorts if a student feels unsafe. Police also said there are blue lights installed along the campus's main paths. These are tall towers lit with blue lights, equipped with buttons to call for help.

A concerning point officers made, is they do not believe all students have A&M's Public Safety Department phone number: 256-372-5555. They asked students at the rally to take out their phones and add the number.

Students said they are pleased to hear more lighting is coming to the campus, to aid in their safety while traveling at night.

"It could have been us," commented freshman Hayle Crayton about the alleged assaults. "We walk around every day, at night."

Shanna Richardson said she will do more to protect herself.

"I'm going to be cautious about the places I go, and my actions," she said. "I won't be alone."

Public safety officers also stressed that AAMU needs to come together during these difficult times. Officers want all Bulldogs on board with increasing safety and looking out for one another.