Over-The-Top Security Measures at Dr. Dog Lincoln Center Concert

By Devin Booth

Last Friday on January 24th, I went to the Dr. Dog concert at the Lincoln Center Campus and was shocked that every student attending the concert was forced to check ALL their belongings. I got even more agitated while waiting in  line to fork over my precious purse after I read a sign that read, “Leave your belongings at your own risk.”

Why was our own school treating us like were high-risk prisoners in a federal prison?

Other students felt the same annoyance about the extreme security measures that the event coordinators were putting us through.

“I thought it was ridiculous that I was forced to check my purse. It was a small cross-body purse that couldn’t hold much,” said Cara Luke GSB’14. “After I checked my bag, a security guard made me open my wallet, which could only hold my ID, cash, and a couple of credit cards for search. They could have just searched our purses if they were concerned about us smuggling things into the venue.”

The security procedures started with each student showing their Fordham ID to a CAB worker to see if they were on the list of ticket buyers or standby tickets, which cost $5 each. After successfully checking their names off the list, students received wristbands. Next, students were forced to check their coats, large bags, and small purses. CAB members gave out paper stubs with the student’s name and a number that coordinated with a hanger or trash bag.

Frances Parrish FCRH’16 agreed with Luke about the over-the-top security procedures.

“I did feel uncomfortable with the idea of checking my purse, especially since it would have been so easy for them to simply look inside like they do at other Fordham events, ” said Parrish. “The biggest complaint that I have is that the system used to check the coats and bags was also very disorganized.” Parrish went on to describe the chaotic scene at the end of the concert when all the students were searching for their disorganized belongings in the bins.

Luckily, I retrieved all of my belongings intact from the bag check, after seeing Dr. Dog’s stellar performance.  However, I was so disappointed that the vibe of my Winterfest experience went sour because of the excessive security procedures. I decided to email someone in charge of Winterfest to get some insight.

Luckily, I retrieved all of my belongings intact from the bag check, after seeing Dr. Dog’s stellar performance.  However, I was so disappointed that the vibe of my Winterfest experience went sour because of the excessive security procedures. I decided to email someone in charge of Winterfest to get some insight.

The Assistant Director for Programming in LC’s Office of Student Leadership and Community Development, Christina Frankovic, who helped advise the LC CAB Winterfest Concert Committee, was able to answer some of the questions I had regarding the security policy.

“This policy has been in place for a number of years,” Frankovic wrote via email. “These were the same security procedures that were in place last year at Winterfest, and have been in place at Spring Weekend, so this year’s security plan was consistent with the plans from previous years.”

When I asked the reasons for the committee to force girls to check their small purses, Frankovic wrote, “We inform all ticket holders at the time of ticket purchase, by email as well as printed on the actual ticket, that this is the policy, and we strongly encourage students to leave their bags at home, in their dorm room, or in their locker if at all possible.”

I looked back over my email and I noticed ain an informational email sent from Frankovic, preceding the concert that stated what she had told me.screen

However, she was not able to answer WHY this is the policy?

Fordham students may never truly know why and how the administration decided on employing such invasive security measures, but we are able to give advice to CAB in order to make future events more enjoyable.

“Some advice that I would give is that the coat check itself was convenient and I appreciated it, but it should not be mandatory and coats and bags should be organized and treated more carefully, especially given how many there were” said Parrish.

“Just check students’ bags rather than forcing students to store their personal belongings,” said Luke. “However, I will say that Dr. Dog sounded great!”

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