Alcohol violations at UH jump 72%, report says
The number of alcohol violations on the University of Hawaii Manoa campus almost doubled in 2005, but that doesn't necessarily mean drinking is up, university officials said.
Rather, it's the result of an alcohol crackdown last year that led to more reported incidents and tighter security, said UH spokesman Jim Manke.
The number of alcohol violations last year is part of an annual campus crime report recently released by the university in accordance with the federal Jeanne Clery Act. The law requires an annual security report to be forwarded to the U.S. Department of Education and the community.
The report showed a decrease in burglaries and sex assaults, but an increase in assault and arson in 2005 compared to prior years.
Alcohol-related disciplinary referrals were at a sinful 666 in 2005, almost double from 2004's 388 referrals.
"As a general statement, the anecdotal evidence shows that there are fewer incidents this year," Manke said. "It's the result of the tougher attitude."
"Tougher attitude" meant more posters, more late-night socials, more student counseling and more training for resident assistants at the dormitories.
A similar increase was seen in drug-related referrals. There were 167 referrals in 2005, compared to 67 in 2004.
Students caught violating the alcohol or drug provisions on campus face disciplinary actions outlined in their student conduct code, including expulsion, or arrest by police.
Despite the statistics, UH freshman Adam Langsner said he's not sure drinking is really on the decline in the dorms.
"They say these are wellness dorms, but I see people smoking and drinking all the time, sometimes on their balconies," said Langsner, an 18-year-old psychology major. "There's more going on unnoticed than there is reported."
Reported burglaries on campus have seen a drop over recent years, according to the campus crime report. In 2003, there were 128 reported burglaries, 77 in 2004 and 49 last year.
Manke said the decrease may also be a result of stronger student vigilance in reporting incidents, which has acted as a deterrent for burglars.
"I think the awareness of the students about the kinds of activities that are not acceptable have been brought to the forefront," Manke said.
Although there were only two reported incidents of sexual assault on campus last year, university women may still not be as upfront as they should be, said Jayne Bopp, project coordinator for the Program Against Violence to Women at the university.
There were seven reported incidents in 2003 and three in 2004, the report states.
"Those numbers are so small, they probably represent only 5 percent of the people assaulted," Bopp said. Usually victims of sexual assault know the assailant, which makes it difficult to report the incident.