Brighton and Sussex universities dismiss report claiming students most at 'risk of crime' (From The Argus)
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Brighton and Sussex universities dismiss report claiming students most at 'risk of crime'
University bosses have rubbished claims that their students are the most likely victims of crime in the region.
The findings were compiled by using crime data from a three-mile radius around some 120 campuses – with the aim to include student housing areas.
Some 1.82 out of every thousand residents in the area around the University of Brighton’s campus were subject to either robbery, burglary or violent crime between June 2011 and May 2012.
However, university bosses have slammed the report describing it as “misleading”.
A University of Sussex spokeswoman said: “The statistics relate largely to residential areas of Brighton and reflect crime levels in our city unrelated to the university itself. Our campus, which is home to four thousand students, is an extremely safe environment, with very low levels of crime.”
A University of Brighton spokesman added that incidents were “very rare”.
He said: “Less than two incidents per thousand population have been reported.”
The Complete University guide compiled the data for 120 universities across the UK.
The final rankings were formed by comparing the rates of three of the most common crimes to affect students: robbery, burglary and violent crime.
In comparison to other areas of the country. the South East has low rates The “riskiest” universities to attend are Hull with 2.58 of the crimes per thousand residents, Manchester Metropolitan (2.55) and the University of Manchester (2.51).
In comparison Aberystwyth had just 0.47 and Durham 0.75.
Bernard Kingston, founder of The Complete University Guide, defended the report.
He said: “Our universities do not exist in isolation from the communities within which they are located, and, regrettably, crime is a constant presence.
“Many students, particularly those from overseas, are often not aware of the risks in the areas around their chosen institutions.”
A University of Sussex spokeswoman added: “The safety of our students and staff is of the highest priority, which is why we have an extensive range of security measures already in place.
“These include 24-hour security patrols, a network of CCTV cameras, emergency phones, free personal alarms, and a lone-person 'walk-home' service.”
The University of Brighton added: “We take the issue of crime very seriously.”
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