Public Safety Director Keith Molinari has introduced the idea of purchasing an app that better ensures a student’s safety wherever they go.
LiveSafe is a downloadable app that mobile users can use to initiate contact with emergency responders around the campus.
But it needs funding from the Student Government Association in order to be implemented and there has been zero dollars put forth.
“This app is not only a public safety app,” said Molinari. “It has many different functions.”
Some of the most popular functions of the app are its geo-tracking, photo circulation, and direct contact between Public Safety and 911.
Geo-tracking can be used as another form of communication, he said.
“So, say if I wanted to send out that school was canceled tomorrow, I could set up a ‘fence’ of 15 miles around campus and anyone who has the app, it instantly pops up on their phone,” Molinari said.
For the photo circulation, any student can take of photo of something, send it to Public Safety and then Public Safety can send it to every student with the app within a matter of seconds, he said.
Maybe the most beneficial part of LiveSafe is the accessory to have a direct 911 button in case of emergency but that also connects to Public Safety allowing both to know the location of the phone it’s coming from.
This app would be in addition to the blue lights on campus, which are “public safety theater,” as Molinari likes to say. They are for the public to see and feel comfortable and feel safe. The blue lights would still be around along with LiveSafe.
“One of the big reasons I want this app to happen is because it all happens in a matter of seconds to the entire campus,” Molinari said. “Unfortunately, as of right now, there is no money put forward for it and in order to see it come to Castleton, it needs to come from the students, if they want it from SGA.”
The cost of this app would be around $8,000.
“I think this is a good idea,” said Dakota Garrow, sophomore at CU. “I mean if we could get the funding, I think that the overall feeling of safety on campus would go up.”
Freshman Cameron Jarnot goes to Duke University, which uses the app and she said it’s popular there.
“Most people have it and definitely like the security of it,” she said.
“I mean, yeah, I think that the blue lights are a little outdated and having an app on my phone would be nice for safety purposes,” said sophomore Caleb Johnson. “I would support the idea of getting the app.”
Molinari, with a concerned look, said he thinks Castleton is a little “behind the curb for the safety of college students on a campus.”
James Wolfe, president of Student Government Association, called the idea an “interesting concept” worth talking about.
“As SGA’s primary interest is supplying the student body with resources and different opportunities, it would be something that Congress would have to consider carefully,“ Wolfe said. “I don’t want to speak for others or give a false misrepresented answer, but at this time, I do not know.”