Party calls decrease
Police report that complaints for loud noise or large parties on or near the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign campus have dropped by 61.4% since the first week of the semester:
- 8/24 through 8/30 - 114
- 8/31 through 9/6 - 74
- 9/7 through 9/13 - 48
- 9/14 through 9/20 – 44
SOURCE: Champaign PD, Urbana PD and University of Illinois PD
URBANA, Ill. – The number of large parties on or near the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign campus has dropped precipitously in recent weeks as staff from the Division of Public Safety work to enforce public health rules and Illinois students have cooperated.
Complaints for loud parties in the campus area dropped from 114 in the first week of the semester to 44 last week. Of the 44, there were 23 parties that were found to be in compliance with local public health regulations mandating that gatherings be limited to fewer than 10 people and that party guests maintain distance from each other. Another 14 could not be located upon arrival of public safety staff.
Other party hosts have been ordered to pay fines. Recently, two U. of I. students received three citations each related to a large party they hosted on Aug. 28. Charges included endangering public health (a $750 fine), hosting a nuisance party ($350), and reckless conduct ($255). The total amount of fines issued to each party host was $1,355.
Officers from the Champaign, Urbana, and University of Illinois police departments as well as trained Student Patrol officers have been responding to calls for loud or large parties. Police are also working with the university’s Office for Student Conflict Resolution in cases where academic discipline is warranted.
Recently, they have seen widespread compliance and cooperation as the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign community has taken health guidelines seriously in order to protect each other.
“This is what we want to see. We are glad to see that, in the vast majority of cases, students are voluntarily complying and cooperating,” said Executive Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police Alice Cary. “We do not want to issue citations and fines to our students, and we do not enjoy being the party police. But the safety and the health of our community is our foremost priority, and right now, the global situation demands that we take this approach.”
Recent statistics are a departure from earlier in the semester, when the case positivity rate on campus was increasing rapidly. The university quickly announced more stringent lockdown procedures for two weeks, which reversed the trend.
Students, faculty and staff rose to the challenge and joined in making the well-being of the community their priority.
“Perhaps at no time in our history has collective action been more important to our safety and well-being as it is right now,” Cary said. “It is inspiring to see the collaboration between our students, staff, faculty and administrators in keeping the spread of COVID-19 to a minimum, and I am proud to be a part of this community effort.”
For more information about what the university is doing in response to COVID-19, visit covid19.illinois.edu.