Throughout this semester, students have noticed tighter security checks at the entrance gatehouses. Certain security officers have demanded that students show ID and others aren’t as strict.
According Donald Wenz, Public Safety Chief for Brooklyn College, this is to deter anyone motivated to commit a crime on Brooklyn College campus. Wenz said that it is policy for students to show ID at school entrances; however, officers have the power of discretion. If an officer sees a student every day and knows that student is coming for school, he has the power to decide whether that student’s ID needs checked. Wenz made clear that they do not have the discretion to be lazy.
The policy of ID checks was instituted in 1993 due to several crimes near campus. Brooklyn College then became a closed campus.
“We are connected [CUNY wide], but one thing you have to understand, the ultimate responsibility for the security on each campus is that of the college president,” Wenz said. “Different college presidents may have different policies for their individual campuses on how they want campus security to be operated.”
When officers were asked about why some officers ask to see ID and others don’t, an officer located in Whitehead Hall said that it is “random, and up to the officers,” when they ask to see ID’s. This officer asked for his name to be kept anonymous.
Another guard at the east Bedford entrance, who has been working for Brooklyn College for 12 years, also wanting to remain anonymous but had much to say about checking ID’s. “I think it’s ridiculous, some students get annoyed when you ask all the time so some officers try to balance it out,” he said. “We don’t want to be repetitive. If I know you, I won’t ask. Some students get agitated and curse at you. Some are very rude, but I don’t let that stop me. As an officer, we don’t reciprocate.”
The public safety force throughout CUNY is connected with an office that is based in Manhattan and oversees all security throughout the campuses. From there, each CUNY college campus has its own chief of Public Safety, then the ranking structure proceeds down from the chief.