MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- The University of Minnesota announced Tuesday a series of new measures to address safety concerns surrounding its Minneapolis campus, including the hiring of additional police officers and a full-time social worker.
University officials say a partnership with the City of Minneapolis is making the safety of Dinkytown, Marcy-Holmes, and other nearby neighborhoods a "top priority." Myron Frans, senior vice president for finance and operations at the university, released details on the effort.
The enhanced safety measures include the installation of at least seven security kiosks in Dinkytown, which will help connect students to campus police.
The University of Minnesota Police Department (UMPD) will also hire three more police officers and a full-time social worker, which will "provide alternative resources for cases involving mental health and chronic offender issues starting August 2."
Additionally, the university will resume the Gopher Chauffeur program that provides free rides home for students, seven days a week. The university is still staffing for these positions.
Frans says these measures, and others in the works, are in addition to other steps already taken. These steps include equipping UMPD officers with body cameras for use starting next month and investing in the Rave Guardian personal safety app.
"We must not be deterred by these challenges," Frans said in a release. "The very benefits of our campus location are what motivate us to make long-term investments in safety and stay focused on solutions. While the UMPD's jurisdiction is largely contained within the physical boundaries of our Twin Cities campus footprint, the University is also committed to being a good partner and citizen."
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