The big picture
Through January, National Stalking Awareness Month, the University of Utah Department of Public Safety (UUDPS) will provide additional training to officers, and additional education to the public on identifying and protecting against stalking related crimes.
Why it matters
Though stalking will affect 1 in 3 women and 1 in 6 men, many victims struggle to name the crime and resort to living in fear, according to the Stalking Prevention, Awareness & Resource Center (SPARC). Further, there are no national hotlines, crisis centers, or coordinated responses to support victims.
What we’re doing
This month, UUDPS is focused on:
- Educating the public on how to identify stalking and how to respond
- Training law enforcement and victim advocates to better help stalking victims
- Connecting everyone with resources to increase awareness, safety, and perpetrator accountability
“We want the University community to understand that education before a problem begins is a vital safety tool in dealing with these often under-recognized crimes,” said Major Heather Sturzenegger, executive officer at UUDPS. “We are training to be a more effective and cooperative team in support, outreach and response.”
🎗️Look for officers and safety leadership wearing yellow ribbons all month to signal commitment to continuing professional training and increased victim advocacy.
“Stalking is a pattern of behavior directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to feel fear for the person’s safety or the safety of others; or suffer substantial emotional distress,” according to SPARC. Learn more at www.stalkingawareness.org.