U of U announces increase in security ahead of possible protests

File photo: Wikimedia Commons/Daderot

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, Jan. 14, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — The University of Utah has announced an increase in security ahead of possible protests this weekend and into next week.

“Based on information from national intelligence agencies surrounding the presidential inauguration, police departments across the country, including at the U, are proactively monitoring and increasing security,” says an email sent to U of U staff and students.

Over the coming days, University police will increase officer presence on campus, though there is currently no indication of protests planned on campus, the email says.

“Some members of the campus community may choose to participate in planned protests,” the email says. “Other campus community members are encouraged to avoid the Capitol area, government buildings, and downtown Salt Lake City for safety. U employees who work downtown should consult with their supervisors regarding in-person attendance from Jan. 16-20. Housing and Residential Education students living downtown should be cognizant of their surroundings, are encouraged to stay indoors if they see protest activities outside.”

The U Speech Policy allows individuals to demonstrate freely, as long as their conduct is not violent, does not unduly disrupt the functioning of the university, interfere with the rights of other members of the university community, or damage university or private property, the email says.

Support and resources are available at the SafeU website, through the SafeUT app and through the U’s Basic Needs Center. The U Counseling Center recently shared eight mental health tips for coping with the election.

Students should report any concerning activity to 801-585-2677.

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