At Northern Illinois University, staff and faculty are committed to ensuring a safe and healthy campus and learning environment that challenges and inspires students to be academically and personally successful. Awareness is a key component of this safe and secure environment, and during the month of October, the university will promote awareness of the safety programs it has in place as well as offer safety tips for the university community.
In the spirit of celebrating safety, NIU Police and Public Safety offers the following general safety tips:
- Be aware of your surroundings. Avoid placing yourself in environments where it’s easier for criminals to commit a personal crime.
- Always keep your doors and windows locked. Never leave personal property unattended.
- If possible, let a friend or roommate know where and with whom you’ll be and when you’ll return.
- Trust your instincts! If you feel uncomfortable about someone near you on the street, in an elevator, or getting off a bus, head for a populated place or yell for help.
- Use well-lit and busy sidewalks.
- Avoid walking alone or walking near vacant lots, alleys, construction sites, and wooded areas. Use the Late Night Ride Service or Huskie Patrol escorts.
- Learn the locations of all call boxes on campus.
- Carry a cell phone, whistle, or a personal alarm to alert people that you need help.
- Attend an educational course and learn what can be done to avoid vulnerability to crimes like sexual assault, relationship violence and stalking.
- Try to park in an area that will be well-lit and heavily traveled when you return.
- Lock your car doors and roll up the windows completely, even if you’re only running a quick errand. Do not leave valuables in plain view.
- If you choose to drink, drink legally and responsibly. Remember that your ability to respond is diminished by over-consumption of alcohol.
- Stay alert at all times and call the police immediately to report suspicious activity.
- Follow all rules of the road when driving a car, riding a bike, or using other forms of personal transportation such as rollerblades, skateboards or scooters.
- Put ICE (In Case of Emergency) in your cell phone, along with a name and telephone number of a loved one, to enable emergency services personnel to contact your family in the event of an emergency.
- Listening to loud music, wearing headphones or using your cell phone distracts you from being alert to potential safety issues. Unplug yourself and tune in to your immediate environment.
- Utilize crosswalks at all times and obey the signals at intersections when walking. Under Illinois law, as a pedestrian, you DO NOT have the right of way until you establish yourself in the crosswalk. If you are crossing at any location other than a crosswalk, you MUST yield to vehicular traffic.
- When driving, be aware of pedestrians and bicyclists and yield to them when required by law.
- Sign up for NIU Safety Bulletins at www.niu.edu/emergencyinfo/register.