Today, University Communication and Marketing begins a new series titled, Campus Safety: Lobos Come First. The series will run weekly over the course of the next two months. The goal of the series is to educate the UNM community regarding current and ongoing campus safety initiatives, crime-related issues and concerns, and ways to protect yourself and your property as well as the utilization of various campus resources in an effort to enhance campus safety for one and all. One note to keep in mind as the series progresses - "If you see something, say something!" If you have any comments or story suggestions for the series, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Campus safety – it’s on everyone’s mind with the rise of crime locally and nationally. A campus environment includes not only an extremely large geographical area, but also a changing environment and population that presents many challenges. At The University of New Mexico, these challenges are magnified given its location as an urban campus in heart of Albuquerque.
The safety and security of every member of the campus community are of prime concern at The University of New Mexico and the UNM Police Department (UNMPD). While the UNMPD works hard to ensure the campus is a safe place to live, learn, work and play, UNM is not exempt from crime.
The University of New Mexico will test its emergency notification systems Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 11:02 a.m.
The test will include all parts of the University's warning systems including sirens, e-mail, text messaging, social media updates and UNM website notifications. All campuses will be a part of this test.
You will receive a reminder about the test via text and email through LoboAlerts system on Tuesday, Feb. 21 at 10:45 a.m.
"Ensuring our campus is a safe place to work, learn, and live is one of our most important priorities as an institution," said UNM President Garnett S. Stokes. "Working together, we can create a safer campus environment for everyone—and a great place to start is by learning more about the services, programs, and policies UNM has in place to keep the Lobo community safe. When it comes to campus safety, I take it personally; after all, I live in University House on campus with my husband. UNM isn’t just my workplace; it’s my home neighborhood.”
As part of its comprehensive safety efforts, UNM began its 2022 Campus Safety Plan initiative last fall addressing a multitude of campus planning topics. One effort includes Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) applications, such as the recently completed Campus Gateway Center. CPTED efforts involve a 360º approach to security. The natural surveillance effort enables people to see illegal acts taking place enabling additional crime prevention.
Additional crime prevention methods already in use include building access controls and video surveillance, both of which are currently being expanded throughout campus. Other initiatives in the works include license plate readers, expansion of a current student escort program, gunshot detection, additional officers and funding for mental health resources.
Shortly after Stokes arrived on campus, she created a multidisciplinary team, The Campus Safety Council, that analyzed campus safety needs and made comprehensive recommendations. The Council united all the safety initiatives on campus, centralized discussions surrounding aspects of the broad topic of campus safety, and advised Stokes and other university leadership on the strategic direction of UNM's efforts, particularly related to the built environment. The council has since evolved into the Safe Campus Living Task Force.
These efforts are just part of UNM’s overall campus safety and emergency planning to protect its people first and foremost but also the institution’s operations such as research, athletic and entertainment events, food services, housing and transportation. Each member of the campus community has a responsibility for safety and security at UNM. Faculty, staff and students can all contribute to campus safety and preparedness by becoming informed, staying alert, being aware of your surroundings, using good, sound judgment and saying something to authorities if you see something out of the ordinary. By preparing together, everyone can contribute to a safer campus for all.
“UNMPD does their part to prevent crimes, but to be safe and secure, every member of the campus community must take common sense precautions, be alert and look out for others. Maintaining an effective police department is a community effort, and together we can ensure UNM remains safe,” said Byron Piatt, UNM Emergency Manager.
With the beginning of the spring semester now underway, UNM’s Emergency Management team would like to remind the entire campus community of its emergency response preparedness, its capabilities and procedures. To keep the campus informed UNM uses several mediums to notify the campus in the event of an emergency. LoboAlerts is the University's emergency text messaging system. Without a doubt, LoboAlerts is the quickest method University officials use to reach the most people, and a tool that the campus community should all be using.
“While it is the primary system utilized by the University, LoboAlerts is just one piece of the multi-faceted, campus notification system used to provide safety and inclement weather alerts, and notification of events which have the potential to threaten the University's ability to conduct regular activities,” said Piatt. “The system also includes a warning siren, email alerts, campus safety website and social media updates posted by the UNM Police Department.”
How LoboAlerts works
LoboAlerts is the campuswide text messaging and email system for all faculty, staff and registered students, UNM affiliates and all UNMH employees. On average, text messages are delivered 10 times faster than the e-mail messages. However, the timeliness of text message receipt can vary based upon type of phone, carrier, location, and battery strength. The timing of text messages also depends on when an incident is reported, so if you see something, say something immediately. Don’t wait for someone else to do so. Time is of the essence.
Each of these groups are automatically enrolled when individuals become part of the UNM community. Initially, user information is fed into the system through Banner. Thereafter, system users maintain their user information which includes an active cell phone number for text messages and or email address for email notification. Users may opt out of one, but not both mediums. Additionally, each semester all users should review their contact information, update if necessary, and add additional contact information as needed.
“It’s extremely important for users to update their personal information on a regular basis,” said Piatt. “Users often change cell phone carriers and or email addresses without thinking about all the various places the information needs to be updated. Instances such as these occur frequently and prevent users from receiving important and timely information when an emergency or inclement weather situation arises.”
The LoboAlerts system can store and contact up to three cell phones and three e-mail addresses per user. Piatt suggests that individuals also add the numbers 26787 and 67283 to their address books as LoboAlerts. The numbers are the common short codes used by the system to send messages.
“It is helpful to see a text message coming from "LoboAlerts" rather than some unknown number,” Piatt added.
At the same time text and e-mail messages are being delivered, alerts will appear on campus websites at the top of each page and also social media sites including LoboAlerts Facebook and LoboAlerts Twitter pages.
In addition, UNM also utilizes a community alert system available to those interested within the community. Non-UNM persons who work on campus, nearby businesses and neighborhoods, and parents of students live in nearby communities, or otherwise those who have an interest in receiving emergency notifications, can also receive LoboAlerts by creating their own account on the LoboAlerts Community site. The same messages that go out via the main LoboAlerts account also go to the LoboAlerts community site warning interested individuals of a situation involving an emergency or weather-related alert.
For any questions, an Frequently Asked Questions page is available to answer questions.
LoboGuardian is a joint effort between the Office of the President, the Dean of Students, Campus Safety, the UNM Police Department, and Information Technologies. Implemented in 2015 to increase campus safety among the UNM community, LoboGuardian is a mobile app UNM that increases user safety by creating a virtual safety network of friends and family.
With the LoboGuardian app you can set a safety timer and status; easy access to emergency communication; and to report crime tips to the UNM Police Department. It’s a virtual blue light at your fingertips. For more information, visit LoboGuardian. An FAQ page is also available to answer specific questions.
Blue Light Phones
While the LoboGuardian App is highly recommended to the campus community, UNM has dozens of emergency beacons and blue light phones located throughout UNM’s main and north campuses. These “blue light” phones are easily identifiable, light up at night and connect users directly with UNM Police Dispatch. You may use the emergency telephone by opening the telephone box and pressing the button. The police dispatcher will answer the telephone promptly, and you will be able to relate the nature of your emergency. It is important to know your location when utilizing blue light phones.
Campus Safety Website
UNM is committed to offering services, information, resources and tools to offer a safe campus to all students, staff, faculty, and visitors. As part of the everyday effort to keep the campus community safe, UNM has a comprehensive website that offers a wide array of campus safety information, education and preparation, programs including campus safety, crime prevention and campus safety week, campus resources including community, advocacy, health and counseling and other campus resources such as personal safety tips.
For more information regarding UNM’s safety and emergency practices, visit the Campus Safety website and also, Campus Preparedness.
Finally, if you have any information regarding any campus incident, if you witness or notice any suspicious behavior, contact the UNM Police Department at 505.277.2241.