January 27, 2021


We hope this email finds you safe and healthy as we transition to what are hopefully better days in 2021. Following our end-of-the-semester letter, we wanted to launch the new semester with an update and invitation to participate in the work of the Department of Public Safety Community Advisory Board (CAB).

Many of you will recall that the CAB was formed last year by President Folt to be an action-oriented board committed to an inclusive process that strengthens the trust between the university, DPS, and the broader community, and creates an environment where everyone feels safe and respected. To achieve this objective, the CAB is undertaking an evidence-based comprehensive examination of our public safety practices, including resource allocation, personnel, accountability, operational practices, and training. We report directly to the president and will deliver a set of recommendations to her at the end of the semester.

Last semester, we completed the first steps in this process by assembling the board and hosting a series of Pilot Conversations. We write today with the next step to ensure that the recommendations we make have the highest chance for success by drawing upon a diverse group of voices from across our entire institution and our local neighborhoods. To be sure, the roles all of you will play in this process are critical. We seek your participation in co-designing the future of public safety at USC.

Beginning February 8, 2021, we will host 10 Co-Design Public Safety Sessions. They are open to all students, faculty, staff, and neighbors. Participants are welcome to attend as many sessions as they would like. The sessions will feature facilitated conversations to help us gather and incorporate your experiences and your views about the future of DPS into how we re-design public safety going forward.

Our sessions align with the organization of our CAB into the following five subcommittees: Scope of DPS, Race & Identity Profiling, DPS Interactions with the Public, Best Practices for Campus Public Safety and Community Engagement.

To ensure participants feel safe to express themselves openly and candidly, the sessions will not be recorded. You can pre-register by clicking on one of the links below. Pre-registration is recommended but not required. Please note on your registration if you will need Spanish or Mandarin translation services so that we may provide them as needed.

The schedule for the Co-Design Public Safety Sessions is below.

Scope of DPS Race & Identity ProfilingDPS Interactions with the PublicBest Practices for Campus Public SafetyCommunity Engagement
Monday Feb. 8
1:00 – 2:30 pm
Tuesday Feb. 9
5:30 – 7:00 pm
Wednesday Feb. 10
3:30 – 5:00 pm
Thursday Feb. 11
9:00 – 10:30 am
Friday Feb. 12
9:00 – 10:30 am
Tuesday Feb. 16
9:00 – 10:30 am
Wednesday Feb. 17
3:30 – 5:00 pm
Thursday Feb. 18
11:30 am – 1:00 pm
Friday Feb. 19
9:00 – 10:30 am
Saturday Feb. 20
11:30 am – 1:00 pm

The time for action is now. We’re incredibly enthusiastic about meeting, listening, and engaging all of you in this important dialogue. Please note that these conversations will be trauma-informed and will have many participants with a variety of experiences. If you are not comfortable sharing your thoughts in a virtual meeting space, please note that you can also reach us through two other venues: our CAB website and via email. We will ensure that comments provided there will receive equal consideration to those that are presented in the virtual meetings.

We have much to do as we prepare to deliver the CAB’s recommendations to President Folt later this Spring, and are thrilled to be able to bring so many of you into this important process.


Dr. Ange-Marie Hancock Alfaro
Chair, Department of Political Science & International Relations and Dean’s Professor, Gender & Sexuality Studies
Co-Chair, USC Department of Public Safety Community Advisory Board

Dr. Erroll Southers
Professor of the Practice in National and Homeland Security; Director, Safe Communities Institute; Director of Homegrown Violent Extremism Studies
Co-Chair, USC Department of Public Safety Community Advisory Board