DPS, Safety Advocates Emphasize Student Readiness on Anniversary of Parkland Shooting

SCI Director Dr. Erroll Southers recently spoke with USC Annenberg Media about school safety and preparedness in an era of school shootings. The article notes in part:

“It is difficult to ask people to do something for the first time in their lives when they’re desperately afraid to save their lives,” Southers said.

“If you’re not someone who’s ever considered [a] death threat seriously, when it really happens, you’re going to refer to what you’ve either done before or never done, which is essentially freeze, and it’s not going to work,” Southers said.

But Southers thinks USC is now “ahead of the curve” on gun safety on campus.

“We have active shooter drills on a routine basis,” Southers said. “Price School [of Public Policy] has a number of open community meetings on the subject.” An LAPD SWAT team is assigned to USC’s campus every day, he said.
“Last year we had the false alert at Fertitta. One of the reasons for the extraordinary response was the fact that LAPD SWAT is here,” Southers said.

“One of the things we do here and more people need to do is to understand that the threat is dynamic and security is dynamic,” Southers said. “Our improvement comes with looking at new ways to do things. Looking at new vulnerabilities and trying to enhance security with more policies or procedures that might be more effective.”

Read the full article.

Safe Communities Institute

The Safe Communities Institute (SCI) at the USC Price School of Public Policy continues a more than 60-year tradition of research, interdisciplinary education, and collaboration to advance sustainable “whole-of-community” public safety strategies, policies, and programs. SCI takes a holistic approach to encouraging and informing public safety efforts through collaboration between all public safety disciplines and the communities they serve.

Officer Spotlight - Sergeant Arlen Castillo is an 18-year veteran of the El Monte Police Department. Currently assigned to the patrol division, she is also a member of the Public Information Officer team and is dedicated to building connections between the community and law enforcement. Read more.

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