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Media Contacts

Larry MacIntyre
University Communications

John Applegate
IU Vice President for Planning and Policy

Mark Bruhn
Associate Vice President for Assurance and Public Safety

Last modified: Friday, February 26, 2010

IU moves to centralized public safety and emergency management structure

Feb. 26, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie has approved a new university-wide structure for public safety and emergency management that is designed to ensure uniformity and consistency in these critical activities on all campuses.

Michael McRobbie

President Michael McRobbie

Print-Quality Photo

Police departments on each IU campus are being combined into a single Indiana University Police Department (IUPD), which will be headed by a university director for public safety. Each campus will continue to have a chief of police who heads the local department.

The campus chiefs will report to both to the new director of public safety and to the campus administration, according to John Applegate, IU vice president for planning and policy.

At McRobbie's direction, Applegate recently conducted a university-wide review of public safety and emergency management operations and recommended the new administrative structure.

"We found that IU has highly professional and effective police departments on its campuses, but they are operating independently and are missing valuable opportunities to share resources, expertise and experience," Applegate said. "We also found that there is a need for a more uniform set of law enforcement policies and procedures across the university."

The reorganization also calls for the creation of a new position of university director for emergency management and continuity, who will be tasked with assuring that every campus is fully equipped to effectively respond to the many types of emergency situations that could occur and threaten life and property.

This individual will work in tandem with directors of emergency management for the Bloomington campus, the IUPUI campus and the five regional campuses collectively. The Bloomington and regional positions are new; the IUPUI campus position already exists and will become part of the new organization.

Both of the university directors will report to Mark Bruhn, associate vice president for assurance and public safety.

Bruhn indicated that these are very exciting changes which reflect the president's and each campus administration's overarching goal of maximizing the safety of all members of the IU community.

He said IU must ensure that all its law enforcement officers operate under common well-developed policies and practices that are tailored to the protection of public safety within the unique environment of college campuses. These would include policies and rules around practices as important as use of force and pursuit of suspects.

"For many reasons, we need to be consistent in the way we respond to incidents across all our campuses," Bruhn said. "We will be developing policies and procedures that not only optimize the protection and safety in our unique environment, but which are in line with best practices of the profession.

"The new department should realize cost savings by sharing training opportunities, volume purchase of uniforms, equipment and supplies, and in other areas where expenses are common," Bruhn added.