Originally Published in Talon Marks
Blue Emergency Telephones Keep Falcons Safe
Founded in 1955, Cerritos College is one of the five largest community colleges in Los Angeles County. The college spans across 135 acres of land and is located in the City of Norwalk.
This semester has seen changes for students, the new fine arts building is almost complete, subway has taken the place of taco bell, and a series of new Blue Emergency Telephones have been installed across campus. The new emergency system was brought to attention through campus safety forums in which students, staff, and campus police officials thoroughly discussed what measures could be taken in order to better secure Cerritos College students.
Last semester Cerritos College saw an increase in criminal activity within and nearby it’s campus, leaving many of its students’ concerned about their security. There were two fatal shootings last semester on consecutive days in close proximity to the campus which concerned many students. Campus Safety held a series of forums last semester in order to discuss how Cerritos College could help its students feel more secure. The result of the forums was the Blue Emergency Telephones which can now be seen across campus.
HOW TALKAPHONE HELPED
According to Chief of Police Cerritos College Police Department, Thomas Gallivan, “The blue emergency telephones are similar to the 911 system, The phones are connected to Campus Police. When the emergency button on the Blue Phone is activated, a simple push of a button, the caller is immediately connected to a campus police dispatcher. The location of the blue phone displays on the monitor in dispatch allowing for the dispatcher to send assistance to that location.”
In addition to providing the location of the emergency, the alert system will also be equipped with cameras at eye level, and a secondary one at the top of the pole so that the dispatcher is able to check the surroundings and asses the situation.
Carlos Hernandez, the undecided major said, ‘This is my first semester here and I had heard about the shootings, it’s good to know that they decided to add more security.” Hernandez added that he had seen other campuses having these lights and that he thought that all colleges had them. ‘I wasn’t really aware that this was a new thing for Cerritos.” Hernandez added.
Child development major, Ana Medrano, "I was very scared and paranoid after the shootings we had in February, I’m always walking with my phone and being extra alert, at least now I know that if I can get to one of these stops I can seek help."
Chief Gallivan added that the five Blue emergency telephones are only the initial part of the project and that there are plans to have additional emergency phones installed across the parking lots.
Five Blue Emergency Telephone systems have been installed as part of the initial phase of this project. The systems are located at the west end of the food court, north of the gymnasium, north of the administration building, west of the science building, and next to the college of marquee.