A new policy requires anyone entering Barnard’s gates at night to show a Barnard or Columbia ID card.
The crackdown on IDs between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. was implemented at the start of the semester “with the goal of providing a more secure campus environment,” Dianna Pennetti, director of Barnard Public Safety, said in an email to Spectator.
Administrators met with Barnard’s Student Government Association executive board in the spring, Rachel Ferrari, BC ’13 and last year’s vice president of SGA, said. “After the student leaders provided positive feedback and welcomed the idea, the College went ahead with plans to establish the new policy,” Penetti said.
Although the security measure was conceived in the spring and implemented at the beginning of the semester, students said that, in light of the arrest on Columbia’s campus of a woman who had trespassed after falsely claiming she was a student, they thought it seemed appropriate.
“I think it’s a good idea just so we don’t get weird people coming onto our campus, especially after the incident with the impostor,” Kimberly Hong, BC ’15, said.
Sally Phillips, BC ’15, said she hopes checking for IDs will make the campus safer, but “never felt like there were weirdos on campus before.”
Pennetti said that “in recent years, there have been reports of thefts and other petty crimes both on campus and throughout the surrounding neighborhood. We are hopeful the new policy will provide a more secure environment for our campus community.”
Besides students, the policy allows guests of students to enter campus after 11 p.m. if they are with a Barnard student who is hosting them.
“It didn’t seem like such an imposition,”Ferrari said. “I think it will prevent campus from being less safe.”
Public Safety checked for CUIDs at the Barnard gates last fall during the Occupy Wall Street movement as well, but the monitoring only lasted a few weeks. Of Barnard’s buildings, Lehman Hall, Hewitt Dining Hall, residence halls, and the Barnard Weight Room require IDs for entrance, but access to the Diana Center and Altschul Hall is unrestricted.
No public announcement was made regarding the policy’s implementation, but a sign is posted at the kiosk by the Barnard gates that notifies people entering campus after 11 p.m. to present their ID.
“We expect this to be a lasting change,” Pennetti said. “While we don’t anticipate any other significant changes at this time, we always seek to improve upon our campus safety measures.”