SafeBouND replaces O’SNAP
Lucas Masin-Moyer | Friday, December 9, 2016
One of Student Government’s early initiatives this year was to help phase out Notre Dame Security Police’s (NDSP) old evening transport system, Student Nighttime Auxiliary Patrol (O’SNAP) and replace it with a new service that brought the focus back to safety instead of just giving rides to students.
“No one really knew what O’SNAP stood for,” NDSP captain Tracy Skibins said. “[So] Student Government and I got together over the summer and we tried to figure out a way to bring the safety piece back to it.”
Student Body President Corey Robinson said students’ failure to use the program for its intended purpose also contributed to the desire for change.
Robinson said Student Government and NDSP wanted to “make sure this project towards those who it’s intended to help — individuals who feel unsafe heading back to their dorms and not necessarily a party shuttle.”
Student Body Vice President Becca Blais also said the golf carts, which had been central to O’SNAP, weren’t working as well as hoped.
“It was a big failure,” Blais said. “None of them worked in the snow gear and they didn’t charge and it was a mess.”
The result of Skibins and Student Government’s work to improve safety transport was SafeBouND.
“SafeBouND is a safety escort service for evening hours,” Skibins said. “We assist those students who feel unsafe crossing campus by walking or giving them a ride from one point of campus to the opposite side of campus or wherever they might be going during the evening hours, seven days a week.”
According to Skibins, approximately 60-70 students use SafeBouND each week, with Wednesday night seeing the heaviest traffic.
Skibins said SafeBouND expanded upon the services O’SNAP offered.
“We have students on walking patrol,” Skibins said. “They wear reflective vests, they carry radios, and they have constant contact with NDSP, and they will check more isolated areas in their down time. … If they find a problem like maybe a student who needs a ride or an overly intoxicated student or they see something suspicious, they use their radios to contact NDSP and our officers go to assist them.”
Robinson said the initial transition from O’SNAP to SafeBouND was met with disappointment from the student body.
“I think a lot of people were really disappointed with the golf cart services being taken away but I think there was a misunderstanding in terms of marketing. … There was a lot of miscommunication about the service and what it offered and what we were doing,” Robinson said.
Despite this initial push back, Blais said “within a two-week period it blew over, and I haven’t heard anything recently about problems with it.”
Skibins said she believes the overall transition has been successful in creating a service that truly values student safety.
“I have no doubt in my mind now that when people use SafeBouND they know it is a safety service because safe is in the title of the program, so I think that’s helpful,” Skibins said.
Skibins credits some of the success to Student Government’s efforts.
“Student government has done a great job of promoting the service this year as a safety service,” Skibins said.