Wed, Sep 27, 2017 - Page 3 News List

DPP lawmaker urges campus safety procedure review

By Lin Chia-nan  /  Staff reporter

Legislators and members of the Taiwan University Act Reform Association hold a news conference in Taipei yesterday to discuss the “Sing! China: Shanghai–Taipei Music Festival” held at National Taiwan University on Sunday.

Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Rosalia Wu (吳思瑤) yesterday urged the Ministry of Education to review campus safety reporting procedures nationwide, following reports of student injuries on Sunday after a cross-strait music festival on National Taiwan University’s (NTU) campus was abruptly ended after protests.

NTU secretary-general Lin Ta-te (林達德) on Monday said the university had procedures in place to deal with protests, but the response of the school’s security personnel has room for improvement.

The University Act Reform Alliance called a news conference at the Legislative Yuan, inviting two DPP legislators, a ministry official and student representatives to discuss campus safety issues.

“Due to confusing campus safety reporting procedures, students and teachers are often powerless when such incidents occur on campus. They also lack the means to figure out situations afterward,” alliance convener Chu Yen-chen (朱晏辰) said.

The NTU case is another example of universities excluding students from decisionmaking, he said.

Department of Student Affairs and Special Education specialist Cheng Wen-yao (鄭文瑤) said the ministry has a 24-hour campus safety center, which received the NTU administration’s report at about 9:23pm on Sunday.

However, DPP Legislator Chang Liao Wan-chien (張廖萬堅) said that the center might be useless, as it only received information about the protest four hours after the incident.

Wu said police have demonstrated divergent standards of law enforcement, as their response to the NTU incident was delayed, but very fast when students at Fu Jen Catholic University in New Taipei City’s Sinjhuang District (新莊) attempted to topple a statue of Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) on Feb. 28.

While the National Police Agency in July published new guidelines on when police can enforce the law on university campuses, they are inefficient, Wu said.

She demanded that the ministry push universities nationwide to review their standard operating procedures for hosting events and leasing venues, saying that it should submit a review in one week.

“As similar activities from China are increasing, protests initiated by pro-Taiwan independence and pro-unification groups are likely to increase as well,” Wu said, warning that more such incidents could occur at campuses.

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