With St. Patrick’s Day on a Saturday this year, Western University students are ready to roll — and so are police services.
Local police services, both on and off campus, are busying themselves to prepare for St. Paddy's. Campus Police will have extra officers and police communications operators for the day, according to director Jean-Claude Aubin.
“Historically I haven’t had too many concerns with St. Patrick’s Day. It’s been fairly good on campus, and we work very hard to keep it that way and to keep campus safe,” Aubin said.
London Police Service inspector Lynn Sutherland also confirmed there will be a “significant patrol presence to proactively deal with events on St. Paddy’s Day.” Officers will be dispatched throughout London, with a higher concentration of police surrounding Western and Fanshawe College’s campuses and Richmond Street.
Sutherland also expressed her concern for the safety of those who choose not to partake in traditional festivities.
“Those that celebrate St. Paddy’s Day are encouraged to give consideration to others that are using roadways, homes and other venues,” Sutherland remarked.
With the success of party monitoring through social media last year, the London Police will continue to do so, keeping a close eye on events with large followings that may pose a potential threat to the safety of students and the London community.
University Students’ Council president Tobi Solebo said the USC is also preparing for St. Patrick’s Day. To encourage the safety of students and others, the USC is offering programming that will allow students to partake in traditional festivities in a safe environment.
“We have Lil Yachty coming to the London Convention Centre and have offered students discounted ticket prices to incentivize attending the event,” Solebo said.
The USC has also run a social media campaign to inform students about different city bylaws to ensure students have the knowledge and awareness to celebrate responsibly.
“We are always primarily concerned with student safety both on and off campus,” Solebo said. “We want each and every student to make responsible choices, look out for their peers and have a safe day.”