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Safety in the City

  • Students need to be aware of their surroundings, walk with a positive bearing. If you use an electronic device to listen to music, keep the volume to a reasonable level.
  • Trust your instincts; if a situation makes you feel uncomfortable, get away as quickly as possible. Make casual eye contact with the person making you feel uncomfortable just to let them know you are aware of their presence.
  • Travel in groups of two or more (the buddy system)
  • Let a roommate or friend know where you are going and when you plan on returning.
  • Be aware of pickpocket situations — crowded areas e.g. subways, concerts, etc.
    • Men - carry wallets in front pants pocket.
    • Women - use bags, pocketbooks etc. that zipper well; keep pocketbooks on your lap when in restaurants etc. Avoid the backs of chairs or under the table, carry your bag close to your body, tucked in the bend of your elbow. Avoid bags that clasp or snap shut.
  • Beware of scam artists offering big returns for little or no money (often referred to as good faith money). If it seems too good to be true - IT IS.
  • The best time to use ATMs is during the daylight hours. Use bank affiliated ATMs whenever possible.
  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash; avoid counting or displaying money on the street.
    • Minimize the number of credit cards carried.
    • Carry money for emergencies e.g. cab fare, quarters for phone calls
  • When traveling, plan your route ahead of time, know how to get to where you are going.

Subway

  • Subway stops with lit green globes are open 24 hours a day, red globes means entry is closed, red over white coloring is a metro-card only entrance. It is always a good idea to have a metro-card with a sufficient balance.
  • On subways — where possible stay in the token booth area until your train arrives
  • On the platform — look for a black and white striped board. That is where the car with the conductor will stop. You can also ride in the first car where the train operator is located.
  • When entering a subway car look around. Does anyone make you feel uneasy, if so, move.
  • Try sitting in the middle of the subway car away from the doorway.
  • Keep chains and jewelry hidden. Turn gemstones in toward your palms.

Street

  •  On the street — Travel well-lit and populated areas. Avoid "short cuts." If you must travel alone late at night, call someone at your destination to let them know you are coming and how long it will take you to arrive.
  • If a car approaches you and asks for directions, speak with the occupants at a safe distance no matter what.
  • If you feel you are being followed cross the street, if that person follows you again, re-cross the street. If you're still being followed look for a open store etc., begin to run, call out "HELP!!", or call out to someone on the street as if you know them.