The Department of Public Safety
The Department of Public Safety (DPS) provides uniformed security officers on campus and telecommunications staff in the office 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The department maintains regular foot and cruiser patrol of campus and responds to emergencies. The Department of Public Safety reports to the Dean of the College. Public Safety Officers do not have powers of arrest but work closely with local law enforcement agencies. Public Safety Officers have the authority to stop individuals on campus and to request identification. Public Safety also have the authority to issue parking tickets and Notice of Trespass.
The department's staff includes the Director of Public Safety, Associate Director of Public Safety, Museum and Events Manager, Telecommunications Manager and Technical Support Specialist, On-Call Manager and Trainer, Sergeants (2 full time), an Administrative Assistant, Patrol Officers (11 full time), Telecommunications staff (6 full time, 3 part time, 4 on call), Art Museum Monitors (4 part time, 3 spare monitors), seasonal Midd Rides drivers, and on-call Special Events Staff. Public Safety also hires students for Midd Rides.
The DPS maintains two fully equipped patrol vehicles. Through the use of these vehicles, foot patrol and seasonal bike patrol, officers patrol the College's buildings and grounds. All officers carry radios and are CPR, First Aid and Automated External Defibrillator certified. The officers attend workshops and training seminars relevant to campus security and safety. These training sessions are provided by professionals in the fields of security, law enforcement, and emergency medical response. Additionally, many of the staff at the Department of Public Safety have extensive prior experience in law enforcement, safety, security work, emergency medical and fire response.
Public Safety officers are often the first responder for assistance in reports of fire, medical emergencies and criminal activity. The Department works with the Middlebury Police, the Vermont State Police, the State's Attorney of Addison County, Addison County Sheriff's Office, the State of Vermont Department of Liquor Control, Middlebury Fire Department, Middlebury Regional Emergency Medical Services, and Porter Hospital.
Fire alarm and intrusion alarm signals are received at the telecommunications center through a computerized alarm processing system. (There are a few small residential houses with a fire alarm system that only sounds locally and does not report to DPS. Please the Fire Systems List in Annex C of this handbook.) In the event of fire, smoke or smell of gas on campus, the Department of Public Safety will notify the Middlebury Fire Department and will provide assistance with access to facilities, occupancy information and crowd control.
Middlebury College has an enhanced 911 system. This allows for emergency calls from the campus telephone system to be sent directly to the Vermont statewide 911 dispatching service. The Department of Public Safety is provided with the campus phone location but does not hear the conversation. A Public Safety officer is dispatched to the location and will receive updated information from the responding agency. In the event that a 911 call is placed from a cellular phone or from someone out of the area, the responding agency will notify DPS for assistance. Details regarding the use of the 911 system appear in the Reporting Emergencies, Crime and Suspicious Activity section of this handbook.
Routine calls to the Department of Public Safety should be made to the general business line, (802) 443-5133. This number is answered at the dispatch center and may also be reached by simply dialing the last four digits, 5133, from any campus extension. All calls with caller ID enabled will display for the telecommunication center. If the call displays an ID for a College number, the telecommunicator has access to the location of the phone.
The mission of the Department of Public Safety is to support the educational goals of the college by delivering services that enhance and protect the college community. An environment conducive to learning requires a commitment from each student, faculty member, staff member, and visitor to uphold the ideals of community living. It is the role of the members of the Department of Public Safety to ensure that those ideals are held in high regard by enforcing College policies, laws and ordinances, protecting property and persons, and offering services that contribute to an effective living and learning environment. We welcome you to contact us with any questions or concerns either by email, or telephone.
Agreement with Middlebury Police
The Middlebury Police Department has an agreement with the Department of Public Safety on patrol procedures, assistance with contacting students during investigation of a crime, warrants, parking enforcement and event security. The Public Safety officer immediately report serious crime to the Middlebury Police, and provides MPD with documentation of crimes in accordance with College policies. The Department of Public Safety informs and encourages all victims and witnesses to report criminal acts to the Middlebury Police. Investigations are managed cooperatively with the Middlebury Police. When arrests must be conducted on campus, the Public Safety Department provides full cooperation and assistance to the Middlebury Police.
The Department of Public Safety works closely with the Middlebury Police Department to uphold a community policing model of security. The Middlebury Police Department readily provides DPS with training in the areas of traffic enforcement, special equipment use, local ordinance enforcement and other areas of mutual interest or concern.