April 18, 2013
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Three Indiana University campuses will host or are involved with large annual events Friday and Saturday, April 19 and 20, and university officials are taking the opportunity to remind people to be watchful and aware of their surroundings.
Indiana University Bloomington’s Little 500 men’s and women’s bicycle races are expected to draw their usual 20,000 or so people over Friday and Saturday. At IUPUI, about 40,000 people will take part in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure on Saturday. That evening, IU Southeast will have in its riverfront backyard Thunder Over Louisville, with an anticipated 625,000 spectators.
Appropriate security is in place, as always, and includes increased patrols and other safety measures. There is no reason to expect anything unusual, but in light of the events at the Boston Marathon this week, it’s just smart to remind spectators and participants that they too play a role in recognizing and reporting suspicious activity.
“Our university communities host numerous events that draw thousands of people to our campuses throughout the year,” said Jerry Minger, university director of public safety. “It always is our goal to create safe environments where faculty, staff, students and visitors can enjoy those events.
“With several particularly large events coming up, we are reminding participants and spectators to be alert to activity that may seem suspicious or out of place and report it to appropriate officials. Community members are the best source of information for law enforcement. They know their environment. They know what belongs, and they know what is out of place. A person, a package, a behavior that is odd or suspicious … ‘say something’ … say something and call the police.”
Minger’s “Say Something” comment is in reference to the Department of Homeland Security’s nationwide campaign — a simple, effective campaign to raise awareness of public safety.
At Secretary Napolitano’s direction, DHS launched its nationwide “If You See Something, Say Something ™” effort on July 1, 2010 with the permission of New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority which licensed use of the initiative to DHS.
It’s a simple and effective program to raise public awareness of indicators of terrorism and terrorism-related crime. It also emphasizes the importance of reporting suspicious activity to the proper state and local law enforcement authorities.
The “If You See Something, Say Something™” campaign underscores the concept that homeland security begins with hometown security, where an alert public plays a critical role in keeping our nation safe.The campaign requests that people remain aware of what’s going on in their surroundings, and that they do not hesitate in reporting any suspicious activity to appropriate authorities. In Indiana, if someone needs to report suspicious activity they should call 877-226-1026 and in Kentucky call 866-EYE-ON-KY or in case of emergency call 9-1-1. If outside of those states please report suspicious activity to local law enforcement.
The DHS “If You See Something, Say Something ™” campaign is launched in conjunction with the rollout of the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative (NSI). The NSI is an administration-wide effort to develop, evaluate, and implement common processes and policies for gathering, documenting, processing, analyzing, and sharing information about terrorism-related suspicious activities. Led by the Department of Justice, the NSI is implemented in partnership with state and local officials across the nation.