On May 27, UMN President Joan Gabel published a letter detailing what it meant for the university now that their relationship with the MPD had been severed. Among other things, it meant that several agreements with the MPD have been scrapped in favor of simply using the university’s own police force, the University of Minnesota Police Department (UMPD). Among these include agreements for specialized services such as the use of a K-9 explosive detection team.
As part of that, city and university police would no longer work together to provide security for large-scale events that occur on campus such as football and basketball games, concerts and ceremonies. However, the UMPD would still be allowed to call upon the services of the MPD for joint patrols and investigations that “directly enhance the safety of our community or that allow us to investigate and apprehend those who put our students, faculty and staff at risk.” (Related: Ted Cruz gets it right: If cities “defund” police and deprive residents of protection, they should be sued for damages.)
In the weeks following the UMN’s severing of its relationship with the MPD, university students have received no fewer than six systemwide public safety alert messages. These messages inform the students to be very cautious while in or near the campus, usually due to the presence of a reported violent crime.
The first message was sent on June 16, and the latest on July 23 – six messages in a span of six weeks, five of which were emergency updates. For comparison, UMN students only received seven such announcements, with only two being emergencies, from January up to the end of May.
Five of the public safety alert messages were sent out following reports of robberies in or near the campus, while the sixth was sent out after an attempted robbery. Suspects were armed in two of the robberies.
The increase in criminal activity in and around the campus has left many students to wonder if UMN knows what it’s doing and is capable of keeping its students safe. Many are also considering whether cutting ties with the MPD was truly the right decision.
According to Campus Reform, the UMPD is still capable of leading day-to-day efforts to enhance public safety within the campus, and that while the university police department's relationship with the MPD has been mostly severed, they are still capable of cooperating whenever it is seen as essential.
However, this has not inspired a lot of confidence in the university’s students.
“I think that the [UMN] is more focused on the social issues brought up by students rather than our actual safety,” said Nina Lind, a senior at the university. “I am genuinely concerned to come back to campus [without] the MPD being present.”
Chase Christopherson, another student, said that he was disappointed that UMN officials have “caved into the mob,” referring to the Black Lives Matter movement and the pressure they might have put on the university. He added that he fears that UMN does not truly care about the well-being of its students, but only cares about “appeasing those who want nothing to do with law, order and safety.”
Learn more about all of the other ways the liberal bias in universities across the country is making them surrender to the demands of left-wing movements like Antifa and the Black Lives Matter movement at CampusInsanity.com.