As part of The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, Humboldt State University has once again released its Annual Security Report (ASR).
Colleges and universities that receive federal funding are required to release a report on crime statistics that occurred on the school’s campus each year. This year’s report covers the start of January 2018 through December 2020.
“We share this information in a spirit of openness and with a deep commitment to fostering a safer environment for teaching, learning and living,” President Tom Jackson said in the report.
This year, HSU’s report noted that the previous Clery Director and Clery Coordinator retired at the end of 2020. Allan Ford, the interim Title IX Coordinator and DHR Administrator, filled in as Clery Director and Nicki Viso, the Program Analyst in the Title IX & DHR Prevention Office, filled in as Clery Coordinator.
“This has given us an opportunity to review our procedures and ensure we are up to compliance with the Clery Act,” Viso said. “I appreciate the efforts of the Clery Compliance Team, especially Housing, Dean of Students, and UPD, to complete this internal review.”
Ford commended Viso for establishing the Clery Compliance Team and for taking the lead role in compiling statistics.
Despite the pandemic, Viso said that there were no major changes in the report due to COVID-19. There were, however, adjustments to procedures like establishing Clery geography. What this means is the geographic area for which an institution is responsible for disclosing crime statistics.
A notable observation was that there were no hate crimes reported in 2020. There were however six reported offenses of rape and five reported offenses of fondling both on campus and in campus residences.
Ford stressed the difference between a crime and a report. Any allegation that fits into specified criminal criteria and allegedly took place within clery geography can appear in the report.
“I want to make a distinction between what has been reported to UPD and what has not,” Viso said. “The Clery stats and our actual crime stats are different. There has not been an increase in crimes reported to UPD.”
Viso also clarified that the ASR records offenses when they were reported, not when the situation occurred. For example, if an incident was reported in 2020, but occurred two years ago, it would still be counted in the 2020 statistics.
University Police Department Chief Anthony Morgan said that he hopes that victims of sex crimes feel like there’s a reporting channel that they can count on.
“These things need to be reported and I would encourage people to report to us, but I also understand that sometimes people don’t feel comfortable and I hope we get to a place where they do,” Morgan said.