The George Washington University proceeded to the second phase of its arming implementation plan this month after an additional five GW Police Department supervisory officers met the training and certification requirements to be armed.
Following a similar approach to that used in the first phase, the second phase of implementation arms a small cohort of senior supervising officers. This expands the university’s ability to respond to emergencies while allowing time for continued community engagement.
The university also will open nominations for the Campus Safety Advisory Committee, which was envisioned in the implementation plan, by March 1, 2024. This committee will serve an important role in identifying and highlighting safety concerns and challenges and will include students, faculty, staff and community members. Members will meet regularly to increase engagement on safety concerns. Appointments to this committee are expected to be completed by April.
Throughout the arming implementation process, the university has sought community input on planning by meeting with student groups, faculty, staff, neighbors and other stakeholders; holding community forums to answer questions; and reviewing comments submitted through a feedback portal.
Feedback has been incorporated into a five-part plan—which details the phases, policies, training requirements, engagement and establishment of an interim Independent Review Committee to provide additional review and accountability—that is guiding the university's process moving forward. The feedback has strengthened the implementation process, and the university will continue to consider all input it receives through the GWPD website and meetings with stakeholders.
The third and final phase of arming will be implemented when the remainder of GWPD’s supervisory officers meet the training and certification requirements. When all vacancies are filled for these roles, a total of 22 supervisors will be armed.