SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) — The University of Utah announced the creation of two new public safety committees Monday.
According to University officials, the committees were created this month by the University of Utah Chief Safety Officer Marlon Lynch and appointed by the university President Ruth Watkins.
The two committees, the Public Safety Advisory Committee and the Independent Review Committee, are comprised of students, faculty, and staff from across the institution. Officials say they were designed in efforts to ensure a broad representation of constituents is included in public safety decision-making.
Chief Safety Officer Marlon C. Lynch with the University of Utah said in a statement to ABC4 News “It is extremely important to have students on both of these committees, which is emphasized by having students co-chair the Public Safety Advisory Committee.” Lynch said students are a constant on campus, giving them a level of valuable insight.
Lynch said the two new committees are necessary to enhance engagement and accountability between the Department of Public Safety and the communities it serves. “The Public Safety Advisory Committee will create opportunities for our communities to directly impact the type of public safety services that are provided and how those services are delivered,” Lynch said.
When asked if the death of Lauren McCluskey, a student-athlete at the University of Utah who was shot and killed nearly two years ago, played a role in the decision to add of the two committees Lynch said “These two committees are the result of community feedback, best practices, and the culmination of findings and recommendations from several reports that were completed over the past few years.”
Lynch said the end goal with the addition of these two new safety committeees is to establish a partnership with our communities by developing a shared responsibility for creating a safe, welcoming environment on campus.
Learn more about the committees and University of Utah safety.