Dartmouth’s Annual Clery Act Unveiled

Security Report Cover

The cover of Dartmouth’s recently released security and safety report.

Yesterday on October 2, 2014, Director of Safety & Security Harry C. Kinne unveiled Dartmouth’s Annual Security and Fire Safety Report, better known as the Clery Report. Mr. Kinne blitzed out a link to an online PDF file of the report to students and staff. The report includes important safety information for the Dartmouth community, namely campus and federally-recognized crime statistics from 2011 to 2013.

The report announced a dramatic increase in the number of sex offenses reported- from 15 to 35 between 2011 and 2013. Many have speculated, however, that there has been no real increase in the number of sex offenses committed; the dramatic increase of cases reported may likely be a result of recent initiatives by various campus organizations to promote greater sex offense reporting by victims.

In addition to the number of sex offenses reported, the report noted increases within the same time period of hate crimes – which was expanded from crimes on race, disability, ethnicity, religion, gender, and sexual orientation to include gender identity and nationality – and liquor law violation arrests/disciplinary actions. (Liquor law violation ‘disciplinary actions’ refers to educational referrals to the BASICS program.)

Again, in both cases, there is significant speculation that the real number of these offenses may have not changed significantly, if at all. Campus organizations have been fiercely promoting reporting tools for hate crimes, and campus climate has reflected this fact (i.e. OPAL’s online portal to report ‘Bias Incidents’). A change in record-keeping procedures for alcohol violations – made with the advice of nationally-recognized Clery experts – may be a similar explanation behind the surge of liquor law violations.