Local police aim to help high school girls be S.A.F.E.

Columbus North and Columbus East High Schools, in conjunction with the Columbus Police Department, Indiana State Police and Indiana University Police Department, have announced the dates for S.A.F.E. training in Columbus during 2016. Lt. Matt Harris with the Columbus Police Department says that Situational Awareness for Everyday (S.A.F.E.) is designed to help guide young women on how to stay safe in the real world. He explains that this program is offered solely to high school senior girls and will take place during the school day. The sessions will be dedicated to discussing basic self-defense through awareness, as well as other factors.

Lt. Harris says the course is based on the survival signals detailed in Gavin DeBecker’s book “The Gift of Fear” but will also include additional topics such as staying safe during social events, a discussion about sexual assault, as well as a basic self-defense. An Indiana University police officer is scheduled to speak about what to expect from the police departments that serve college campuses. The class offered at East High School will also offer some on-hands exercises to practice basic self-defense techniques. Columbus North senior girls are invited to attend the event at their school on Wednesday, Jan. 27, while Columbus East senior girls are invited to attend the event at their school on Tuesday, March 8.

Columbus Police Department School Resource Officer, Julie Quesenbery, said “the S.A.F.E. event is sure to be an engaging eye-opener for these young ladies as they prepare for their futures. There is a lot of time, energy and effort put toward preparing students for whatever they plan to do after high school and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to add personal safety to that list.”

Students can register by visiting their school’s counseling center/guidance office.