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GUARD Dogs to operate on ‘limited basis’ in spring

Associate News Editor

Published: Thursday, December 5, 2013

Updated: Thursday, December 5, 2013 00:12

Student Body President Edward Courchaine announced at the Undergraduate Student Government meeting Wednesday night that the safe-ride program Guard Dogs will be going under construction and rides may be offered on a “limited basis” in the spring.

Courchaine said USG will be forming an ad hoc steering committee–made up of USG members–that will look into how the program should be revamped over winter break and will determine whether it will be ready for operation when students return for the spring.

“The safety of students is Guard Dogs’ primary concern,” Courchaine said in a press release issued Wednesday after the senate meeting. “Therefore, USG will be connecting with various other safe-ride programs on campus that provide similar services so there are alternative safe ride options available.”

USG has traditionally funded Guard Dogs, which was created in 2006 and is run by students, by channeling $40,000 of its budget to the organization each semester.

“I can’t say for certain when we will be able to (open the program), but in keeping with the fiscal responsibility of this organization, the problems must be addressed,” Courchaine said to the USG senators at their Wednesday night meeting.

Courchaine did not go into details about what changes to the program the committee will seek to make, but said the program has been plagued with issues that have been brought to his attention.

“We are taking a very critical look at how we can approve the program in the future. There’s been missed nights when it has supposed to have run but failed to meet the need,” he said. “We need to look at how we can make it effective and reliable.”

Senator Kevin Alvarez said the committee members will work over winter break on changes to the program.

“All members take it extremely seriously and want to make sure it’s run as safely as possible and making sure it’s available next semester,” he said. “We want to make sure it’s being handled appropriately and its up and running at its full and best capacity.”


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