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Department of Public Safety graduates new class of peace officers

May 15, 2019
posed photo of peace officers.(University of Rochester photo)

On May 10, the Department of Public Safety (DPS) graduated a new class of 25 sworn peace officers. This diverse group of graduates includes individuals proficient in Spanish, French, Tamil, Sinhala, and American Sign Language, and they have joined Public Safety from a range of professional backgrounds—military, health care, higher education and the private sector.

“I am very proud of this highly qualified and diverse class of officers who are going to provide outstanding service to the University community,” said DPS Chief Mark Fischer.

The class began training on Feb. 2 and graduated having completed 600 hours of class room and field training hours that included New York State laws, University policies and procedures, geography of all the campuses, preliminary investigations, diversity and disability awareness, de-escalation techniques and dealing with emotionally distraught persons.

DPS serves a community of over 30,000 students, faculty and staff and manages a 24-hour Emergency Call Center with 16 Public Safety dispatchers, who each year handle over 300,000 telephone calls and dispatch officers for response to nearly 73,000 calls for service—on average 200 per day. Public Safety officers are the primary responders to University properties, including River Campus, Medical Center, South Campus, Eastman School of Music, Memorial Art Gallery and Strong West in Brockport. DPS has a collaborative relationship with area law enforcement agencies, to include joint training for emergency responses and partnering for criminal investigations, safety planning and proactively patrolling following major incidents occurring on or near University properties.

In addition to responding to emergencies—fires, accidents, and physical crimes—DPS staff provide a wide range of non-emergency services, including crime prevention evaluations; training and awareness programs, including “Active Shooter Preparedness,” “Personal Safety,” and “De-escalation” training; distribution of community safety alert bulletins; victim and witness support; personal safety escorts; door openings for lockouts; routine building and area checks; security surveys of University-owned or operated space; and lost and found property storage.


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