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King's considers cutting student Patrol jobs, hiring professional security

It’s likely that fewer patrol staff will be hired next fall, as King’s is looking to hire professional security to watch over the campus after hours.

It’s likely that fewer patrol staff will be hired next fall, as King’s is looking to hire professional security to watch over the campus after hours.
The proposal was first introduced at the last KSU council meeting, where Alex Doyle, director of facilities at King’s, said Patrol should have never been given security duties back in 2009.
In an interview with The Watch, Doyle cited concerns for hiring students to watch over the school after hours.
“We’re expecting Patrol to provide the security element for the campus. They’re not trained… They’re not security. They’re Patrol,” he said.
In 2009 there was a budget cut, which cut campus security. In September of that year after hours duties, such as locking doors and putting the flags up, weren’t being done. Patrol was asked to take on those duties, but ended up taking on more.
Doyle said it would be disastrous if a student were attacked while on a shift.
“The university has been going through a major review over the last two years. They’re looking at everything they do well and (what) they don’t do well,” he said. “And one of the things is policies, due diligence and risk management.”
The cost to hire security isn’t known, yet, as the university will hire from Dalhousie security or an outside firm. But Doyle ensured tuition rates would not rise because of it.
But the decision to bring forward this proposal has some KSU councillors questioning it, saying cutbacks would take away jobs for students. But Doyle said the university has an obligation to protect all students.
Nick Hatt, Dean of Residence, said the numbers show there will be roughly 10 jobs lost. He and Doyle are on the same page. “We’re kind of bare bones, in a way, that we have a lot of shifts and we have just enough workers to cover all those shifts,” he said.
Hatt has heard from people who work on Patrol. “When I explained to them, the idea of campus safety, I also talked to them about how minimal the losses will be. It makes sense to a lot of people,” he said.
So will the university do about those lost student jobs?
Hatt said administration is looking to have students manage the room booking service, and the advancement office has been trying to start up a job bank for almost a year.
There are also talks about a conference services system, which would have the university renting out rooms during the summer and Hatt said students would be needed.
Talks will still continue, for now. Doyle said the next step is to figure out what works best for the university.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

By David J. Shuman

David is a second-year journalism student at King's, is engagement/news editor of The Watch, and a copy editor of The Pigeon. He writes on student politics, campus happenings, and school news. 

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