It has been a very difficult few days for members of the Red River College community as we heard the frightening news that one of our instructors was assaulted off campus in the Exchange District while walking to catch a bus on Tuesday evening.
Many of you have been asking for an update on our instructor’s condition and I’m thankful to report that he has been discharged from the hospital and is now recovering at home. We are continuing to stay in touch with him and will provide any support he and his family need. He gave us permission to provide this update about his condition. Thanks for all of your expressions of concern and well wishes, which I was able to pass along to our instructor during our visit yesterday afternoon.
A counsellor from LifeWorks, the College’s Employee and Family Assistance provider (EFAP) will be on site at Roblin Centre tomorrow, Friday, October 19, 2018 to meet with any staff who require support. The counsellor will be in W306 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Please don’t hesitate to drop in and talk with our counsellor.
I also had the opportunity to talk with many of you yesterday about your security concerns – thank you for taking the time to share your views and also your ideas on how we can improve safety for our staff and students. The safety of our RRC community is our top priority and it is why we took several immediate measures to increase security including adding a dedicated mobile street patrol unit from 4 p.m. to midnight daily for our facilities in the Exchange District. We have also extended the hours of security coverage until 11 p.m. at ACE Space on McDermot (in addition to the 24/7 coverage provided at the Roblin Centre and PGI).
During our conversations yesterday at EDC, a number of people expressed concern about the specific area where the assault occurred – under the covered walkway next to the former Public Safety Building. We know this vacant block is of concern and will continue to push for measures, such as improved lighting, that could help enhance pedestrian safety. We will also ensure that our mobile street patrol unit prioritizes this particular area during their daily security duties.
RRC Security and the College’s Safety and Health Services (SHS) units have also begun an in-depth review of the incident and our security procedures to determine if additional measures are needed. We welcome your suggestions so please don’t hesitate to reach out to members of our Security and SHS teams with your ideas.
I also understand that we have seen an increase in the use of our Safe Walk Program since the incident and I’m pleased that staff and students are using this service. I know that people are sometimes reluctant to ask for help when they are leaving campus and walking to their car or the bus, but our security folks are anxious to be of service. As you know, there are Safe Walk phones available for use on campus, or you can call the following security numbers:
- EDC – 204-949-8305
- PGI – 204-631-3381
- NDC – 204-632-2323
The Winnipeg Police Service is continuing to investigate the incident and we will provide updates as they are available. The police are also asking for the public’s help and if you or anyone you know have information that may assist them, please contact them at 204.986.6219 or Crime Stoppers at 204.786.TIPS (8477).
Paul Vogt | President & CEO
Red River College of Applied Arts, Science and Technology