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Announcing the Drexel Public Safety Oversight Committee

November 15, 2021

The following message was sent to the Drexel community Nov. 15:

In the coming weeks we will be establishing an independent Drexel Public Safety Oversight Committee (DPSOC) charged with providing vision, guidance and oversight to the delivery of police services to the Drexel University community. The creation of this oversight committee is part of our ongoing efforts to reimagine public safety by addressing many of the recommendations 21CP Solutions made in its recent external consultant review of the Drexel University Police Department (DUPD).

The committee reports to Executive Vice President, Treasurer and Chief Operating Officer Helen Bowman, and its inaugural co-chairs will be Thomas R. Kline School of Law Dean Daniel Filler and Vice President and Chief Compliance and Privacy Officer Kim Upshaw. 

As outlined in its charge, the DPSOC will work to enhance our community relationship with Drexel Public Safety by providing transparent oversight of DUPD activity and thoughtful insight into the safety and security needs of our diverse community. The committee will facilitate communication and develop a mutual understanding of roles and expectations between the community and the DUPD. It will also function as a channel for members of both the Drexel and surrounding communities to provide feedback to the Department of Public Safety regarding policing and public safety.

The complete Drexel Public Safety Oversight Committee charge can be found at drexel.edu/dps-oversight, which will also be the hub for ongoing information about DPSOC's work, including meeting minutes. The website will also link to the Department of Public Safety's public crime reports and community events related to campus safety.

Call for Nominations 

Operating independently of Drexel's Department of Public Safety, the DPSOC will include 13 voting members comprising students, faculty and professional staff members, as well as residents of our West Philadelphia community. Senior Vice Provost and Chief Wellness Officer Marla Gold and Vice President of Public Safety Eileen Behr will serve as non-voting, ex-officio members of the DPSOC. 

To round out the DPSOC membership, we are inviting students, faculty and professional staff members who are interested in contributing to this important oversight body to nominate themselves to serve. The nomination form asks for information about your role at Drexel and your interest in serving on the DPSOC. Nominations will be accepted from now through Nov. 30, 2021. DPSOC member roles and responsibilities are detailed on the committee's website; if you have any questions, please send them to dps-oversight@drexel.edu

We will appoint the inaugural members of the DPSOC based on recommendations made by the committee co-chairs, who, in consultation with appropriate university leadership, will select members based on consideration of factors that include: 1) commitment and likely effectiveness; 2) diversity of experience; 3) appropriately broad representation of the relevant communities. During the first year, the committee will be charged with creating ongoing membership selection processes.

Contact Information and Feedback Channels

If you have any questions about the DPSOC, please send them to dps-oversight@drexel.edu.

You can always share feedback directly with the Department of Public Safety via its complaint and commendation forms. The University also provides students, faculty, and professional staff with the option to ask questions or report allegations of suspected improper conduct in a confidential setting via the Drexel Compliance Hotline, hosted by an external, third-party provider, EthicsPoint.

In the coming weeks, we look forward to seeing the Drexel Public Safety Oversight Committee take shape and begin its work. We especially want to thank Dean Filler and Vice President Upshaw for their leadership of this effort. 

Sincerely,

John Fry
President

Helen Y. Bowman
Executive Vice President, Treasurer and Chief Operating Officer