A new Downtown campus policy targeted to remove people unaffiliated with ASU from campus buildings went into effect Friday to address ASU students, staff and faculty’s safety concerns, a University official said.
In addition to the policy's implementation, the Downtown campus library in the University Center shut down the four public access computers Monday.
The policy states only ASU students, faculty, staff and invitees are allowed to be in the Downtown campus buildings, which include the Nursing and Health Innovation buildings, the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication building and the University Center.
Placards around the Downtown campus read, “The ASU Downtown Phoenix Campus buildings and facilities, including the common areas, are for the use of ASU students, faculty and staff, individuals or groups associated or affiliated with or invited by the University, and building tenants and their invitees. Any other use without the permission of Arizona State University is prohibited as is loitering solicitation."
Violators will be asked to leave the campus and may face other sanctions.
Cronkite School Dean and University Vice Provost Christopher Callahan said the policy was installed after hearing many Downtown students’ concerns about loitering by non-ASU individuals.
Callahan said common areas are defined as the tables and benches alongside the Cronkite building and Taylor Place, the residence hall on the Downtown campus.
“Do we want folks in the student spaces when they don’t have business there? No,” Callahan said.
ASU Police Cmdr. Jim Hardina said the ASU Downtown Police would remove people for disruptive behavior and not for their appearances.
“Having a home, not having a home. Taking a shower, not taking a shower,” Hardina said. “It’s not a requirement to be on campus.”
Downtown and Polytechnic library campuses director Scott Muir said he supports Callahan’s initiative to enforce the policy.
“If we have 20 people down here at tables and it’s a busy time, we don’t necessarily have space for students,” Muir said. “It’s tuition money students are paying for and they need priority.”
Muir said he has seen a change in the University Center’s first floor since Monday.
Not all homeless people are dangerous, but there are negative perceptions of them, Muir said.
“It’s not a secret that some people would come down here and see a lot of homeless people,” Muir said. “They would say I don’t want my daughter to come to school here.”
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