Active shooter policies change

Allison Young, Opinions Editor

On September 15th, 2020 there was an active shooter on Western Illinois Universities campus in Thompson Hall. This was the first active shooter that the school has experienced and last week the interim president, Martin Abraham met with the Western Courier staff and was able to provide a bit of insight on the topic.

Students of the university are interested to know more about the situation and what the school plans on doing or changing in the future since the incident has happened. Abraham stated “Well, I do not think that we will be able to actually stop weapons from being on campus.” At first glance, this quote can catch one off guard but to further elaborate he is saying that he can’t entirely monitor every single student that walks in and out of the buildings. There are thousands of students at Western Illinois University and a great majority of them are in the dorms. He also made a comment saying that it would cost the school a lot of money to be able to afford security such as metal detectors in all buildings. Abraham spoke to some of the resident assistants from Thompson hall and they have come to the conclusion that there needs to be more communication amongst different staff members and students at the university.

Abraham has asked that in the future if students hear about a weapon or threat of some sort not to be scared to come forward and let the university know. They are prepared to investigate situations and take the necessary steps to ensure their students safety. Kammi Denhart, a senior a Western Illinois University said “I just want to know that my school is confident in their ability to keep me and my fellow students safe. I want to make sure that they looked at the situation and made adjustments from it.”

Martin Abraham mentioned that after the active shooter he was fairly confident in the emergency plan that the school has in place. He stated “before the incident, something that kept me up at night was wondering if our emergency plan was good enough.” It was tested, tweaked and revised after the situation but no situation is ever going to fit the plan exactly, there is always going to be an adjustment or two made as the situation plays out. It is scary to ever think that this could happen at WIU again but knowing that the university is prepared for the worst can give students reassurance that their school knows how to take on the situation.