UWI AT 70
THE GLEANER, MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 3, 2018
HAT IS the cost of security
for The UWI in a high-crime
“It is significant,” said retired Assistant
Commissioner of Police Keith ‘ Trinity’
Gardner, the director of security at The UWI,
Mona, explaining that the annual cost for
security also takes into account other
facilities like the Western Jamaica campus
and the Discovery Bay and the Port Royal
But Gardner said that the cost varies
depending on the number of events staged
whether by students, academics, or by the
public or private sector.
“The cost of security is also impacted by
the occasional increase in minimum wage as
directed by the Government, which, because
of the number of security guards engaged
on the campus, can be astronomical,”
Gardner added, but was not able to give a
precise dollar figure.
Nearly 120 security guards are engaged
across the island by day and some 85 at
“Then there is the operational cost such
as fuel for motor vehicles and the administrative
cost associated with coordinating the three
security entities on the campus, as well as
acquisition of vital equipment for the total
operation, which includes accommodation for
But he said that some savings are
imminent as plans are well advanced to
gradually decrease the number of security
guards and instead integrate a state-of-the-
art electronic surveillance system buttressed
by a rapid-response teams.
“The most frequent crime on campus is
theft of smartphones, and to a lesser extent,
of laptops, which are mainly left unattended –
and in the clear view of potential thieves – in
motor vehicles,”said the retired crime fighter.
He said that crimes against individuals
often involve students who reside on
campus and who are familiar with their
attackers. At the same time, there is also
concern about gender-based violence, most
of which goes unreported.
Gardner said that there is a zero-tolerance
approach to gender-based violence, which
includes stalking, sexual harassment, sexual
assault, as well as the use of electronic
devices to solicit, threaten, or otherwise
make unwanted sexual advances to
members of the campus community.
The security director also said that sexual
crimes have either declined significantly or
UWI’s security situation ...
The UWI says that the amount it spends to
secure its campuses each year is quite
substantial and represents a significant
portion of its current expenditure.
“We have an inescapable responsibility to
provide a safe and secure environment for all
students, staff, and other stakeholders. Each
year, based on a needs assessment, we make
the necessary provisions for security on our
campuses,” said Gardner.
‘Significant’ cost to keep
the campus safe
Students and staff are required to prominently display their
identification cards at all times while on campus.
Twenty-five per cent of the UWI’s security assets are
dedicated to the halls of residence in the form of static
guards and compound patrols. They are, in turn, supported
by mobile patrols and motorised patrol units from the JCF,
the campus police, and the contracted private security firm.
Three separate entities are engaged in
round-the-clock security at The UWI: the Jamaica
Constabulary Force at Mona; private, contracted
security guards; and campus police officers.
Security tips are regularly disseminated
to students and staff.
There is ongoing investment in technology.
Under the University of the West Indies Mona Campus
Security Act (2002), persons, when asked by a security officer
to present an identification card, must do so promptly.
UWI security initiatives
Prof Leslie Robinson
Prof Gerald Lalor
Sir Kenneth Hall
Prof Elsa Leo-Rhynie
Prof Gordon Shirley
Prof Dale Webber
2018 (newly appointed)