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Stick with your friends
A good way to stay safe in New Haven
When you’re in the city late at night, the last thing you would want to happen is to be left alone.
One of my biggest fears as a young female is walking in the city by myself – during any time of the day, month or year.
When I hear that people are walking around New Haven after a long night of clubbing by themselves, I am completely appalled.
A few weeks ago I was on the shuttle, coming back from New Haven with my friends, we noticed a girl sitting by herself falling asleep. We tried to wake her up and asked her if she was okay and where she needed to go. She said she was fine, then threw up on herself and fell back asleep. She was highly intoxicated.
In the end, my friends and I ended up walking her back to her room on campus to make sure she was okay. We asked her where her friends were and she said they left her alone in Toad’s and she wanted to get back to campus.
I am amazed that in her state of intoxication she was able to walk from Toad’s, across the New Haven Green and get onto a shuttle by herself. When we found her on the shuttle, she was not in her right state of mind.
In my mind she is extremely lucky – at that time of night especially, anything could have happened.
One thing my friend kept telling the girl is that you should not go into New Haven with friends who will ditch you.
It is also important to remember to not be the one who ditches a friend in the city. You should always know where your friends are especially when you go out together in a group.
During freshman year especially, students make new friends and go out into the city on a Saturday night. There is nothing wrong with wanting to go out and have a good time. But never leave the people you go out with because bad things can happen late at night in the middle of a city.
I would never go into New Haven at night with friends I knew would lose me within a crowd. It’s just not safe.
My friends and I stayed together the entire night. We made sure that even in large crowds we were holding onto each other and making sure we were all accounted for.
It is important that when you go into the city – intoxicated or not – you should be with friends who you know have your back.
What could have happened to that girl if we had not found her? If she had not made it onto the shuttle? That is something I don’t want to know the answer to and something I am glad I don’t know the answer to.
It is important to always be aware of your surroundings as well. You know you are in a dangerous city, late at night, as a young college student. You need to be aware that people aren’t all super nice and want to help you – they could try to take advantage of you.
Whenever I speak to the Chief of Public Safety David Barger about keeping yourself safe in New Haven, he always tells me it is important to use the “buddy system,” something we are all familiar with from our years in grade school.
We are taught from when we are young to make sure we don’t go anywhere by ourselves, which may not always be the case now as young adults, but when you go into the city, it is important to utilize the buddy system. And as I already said, it is important to have friends who you know will have your back if you get lost in the crowd or can’t find the shuttle.