Safety concerns lie with the City of Fort Worth, not university

Ever since a TCU student reported a sexual assault on campus last fall, the TCU community has become very concerned about the overall safety on campus. TCU Police and university administration reacted quickly to the incident and have made various efforts to provide the highest security within the premises of the university. For example, the university has made sure every landmark and walking path on campus is well lit at all times. The university went as far as to pay for lighting at the Flash corner store on South University Drive in order to provide safe crossing at night from one side of campus to the other.

I am not very concerned with on-campus safety. I think the university is doing everything it can to keep its students safe.

My concern is how the City of Fort Worth is keeping its residents safe. When we look at the city’s Web site we can find this as one of their goal statements:

“The City of Fort Worth is a growing community that values the quality of life available to our citizens. The shape of our city is guided by a myriad of public and private investments in homes, businesses and public infrastructure. The City Council has established the following strategic goals:

ú Make Fort Worth the nation’s safest major city.

ú Improve mobility and air quality.

ú Create and maintain a clean, attractive city.

ú Strengthen the economic base, develop the future workforce, and create quality job opportunities.

ú Promote orderly and sustainable development.”

These goals all sound great, but it’s very difficult for me to take them seriously when plenty of areas around campus are not adequately lit at night and many blocks do not have sidewalks for pedestrians. Many students live around campus and constantly walk back and forth from their homes to campus. It seems that if making Fort Worth, one of the safest major cities in the U.S., a priority for the City Council, then we wouldn’t have these issues around campus.

TCU continues to bring national recognition to Fort Worth and invite visitors from around the world. It is vital for the safety of the TCU community, surrounding neighborhoods and the city’s reputation to advance the progress of lighting and pedestrian structures around the university’s premises. Through the conjoined efforts of Fort Worth Police Department and TCU Police, I believe that our safety concerns will soon be placated by many future improvements within our communities.

Student Body President Marlon Figueroa is a junior finance and accounting major from San Juan, Puerto Rico. His column runs Thursdays every two weeks.