College asks NYPD to use bathrooms out of sight from students
Brooklyn College is advising New York City police officers to use bathrooms on the far end of campus in order to avoid being seen by students who might be offended by their presence.
The Excelsior, the college’s student newspaper, reported last week that Director of Public Safety Donald Wenz would “prefer” if members of the New York Police Department (NYPD) used facilities in the West End Building (WEB) “rather than walking across either quad to use the bathroom.”
Wenz’s comments come in the wake of a film screening of the movie “Watched,” which documents an NYPD informant who surveilled Muslim students on campus for a period of four years as part of the city’s counterterrorism efforts. After the screening, students were allowed to share their thoughts on having NYPD officers on campus.
“I disagree with them being on campus. Especially allowing them to use the building where student groups are held,” one unidentified student remarked, according to The Excelsior, later noting that he would be sending a petition to College President Michelle Anderson, pressuring her to issue a statement “that we do not want the NYPD on campus in any respect even if it’s just to take breaks and use bathrooms.”
After discovering The Excelsior’s report, The New York Post took a trip to the WEB, where officers are now encouraged to use the bathroom, and found an “out of order” sign on the stall door, with a dirty and broken toilet on the inside.
“The bathroom is horrendous. You can only wash your hands in one of the sinks because the other two are broken,” one student told the Post, though others argued that NYPD should not be allowed on campus at all.
“I know students from every background and across every major. They don’t feel comfortable around cops. They just don’t. It makes safe spaces feel not so safe,” one unidentified student remarked, with another telling the Post that it’s “weird” seeing cops on campus.
But members of the NYPD who monitor the neighborhood surrounding the school told the Post that the student sentiments are “insane.”
“That protester culture is warping their f***ing minds,” one officer remarked, with NYPD sergeants-union chief Ed Mullins telling students to “go take classes abroad, where they can have their bathrooms all to themselves.”
Wenz, however, stood by the directive, explaining that “we prefer” were the “key words” in his statement.
“If police are seen walking across the quad, some may interpret that as an emergency going on,” he explained.
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