Better lighting and CCTV camera promised for scene of sexual attacks

News from Salient
The Wellington City Council will install better lighting and a CCTV camera on the Boyd-Wilson path in response to recent attacks, but VUWSA President Sonya Clark says this is “only part of the solution.”

Richard MacLean, spokesperson for the Council, said that better lighting would be installed, foliage would be chopped back and a security camera would be installed.

According to MacLean, there is one camera already monitoring the path, but he was unsure whether it had captured images of any of the attacks so far. The Council has been working with the University and Te Aro School to install CCTV for at least a year, with the support of Police. In the past month, there have been three reported sexually motivated attacks on the path.

The new measures come after at least a decade of sexual assaults occurring on the path. LED lights were installed along the length of the path in 2013, but students spoken to by Salient have said that the path remains dark.

Sonya Clark, President of VUWSA, said there needed to be a coordinated response between the University and City Council as students felt unsafe around many alleyways in Wellington.

“We want to see the introduction of ‘emergency help stations’, like the ones at Otago and Canterbury Universities, with a panic button, phone and light attached. The introduction of a service where Campus Security walk people off campus at night is also a change VUWSA would like to see.”

Clark also emphasised the importance of not blaming victims, saying: “it isn’t good enough to tell women, especially students, that they shouldn’t walk alone at night.”


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