Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Monday, August 28, 2006

Police In The Halls

Coverage of police search ruling disappointing


I am very disappointed in The Daily Evergreen’s coverage of the issue on WSU police and their role in the residence halls.

Yes, there has been a ruling that says residence hall’s are private property. But how did this ruling come about?

I have not seen the Evergreen report the truth about the lawsuits and what really happened to remove the police presence from the residence halls.

I challenge the Evergreen to look at it from multiple angles: The police, students, faculty, staff, student conduct, etc. Also, what ramifications will stem from this ruling? How will students be help accountable if the police are harder for student staff to call upon? Are student rights really being violated by WSU police who are on university payroll to walk through hallways of university owned property?

Residence halls are very different from apartments, and gray areas have been identified. I am not for random seraches, and I seriously doubt WSU police will perform unnecessary searches.

Residents must remember though, there are still student staff in the building, and they still have to obey their reasonable requests, as well as answer to student conduct.

Is this good for WSU?

I can’t answer that. Only the students can, and they need to look at this issue not only from the perspective of their rights, but for their safety and comfort as well.

Shawn Wallace
senior, mathematics

Until Res Life locked the front doors of the building in the name of security, the arguement about the students having an expectation of privacy due to those door being locked was invalid.

But the doors have been locked and the students are supposed to have an expectation of privacy while in the residence halls. The contract says non-residents must be escorted at all times. What happens when the janitor needs to mop the floors? What about the maintenance man who is working on the building?

The problem started when a rule that the average person using COMMON SENSE is interpreted by a lawyer. -- Add lawyer, remove common sense, and add a warning label to the product and you have America in the 2000's.

Anyway, does anyone believe the intent of the rule was to keep the janitors, cops, firemen, and building maintenace from walking the hallways? I doubt it.

No comments: