The Northern Illinois University police department will host its first-ever Safety Awareness Day next week.
NIU officer Weyni Langdon says the fair’s purpose is for new members of the community – like college freshmen who haven’t been away from home before – to familiarize themselves with police departments in the surrounding area and get necessary safety resource information all in one place.
“At the beginning of the year, we have a lot of questions about which agency is which – you know, ‘Are you NIU police? Are you DeKalb police? Are you county?’” Langdon said.
Langdon says another reason for the event is for those who are new to the area to see the differences among surrounding departments.
“A lot of people confuse our department and DeKalb because, obviously, we’re right across the street and we work in such a close proximity of each other,” Langdon said, “but we want them to be able to see the patches and see the difference and see the officers that are going to be working on the streets and the community.”
Langdon says the department started planning the fair this summer and the hope is to have this become an annual event held at the beginning of every school year at NIU. She says the fair also will include interactive elements, like texting-while-driving and drunk-driving simulators.