Waldo Library has put into place new security measures to “make the learning environment safe and comfortable for students on campus.” After 9 p.m. the library will open to WMU students only.
After 9 p.m., only students, faculty and staff will have access to Waldo Library during the restricted hours while those entering the library must have a WMU identification card. This new policy began earlier this semester to further student safety.
“This is one of the ideas that we came up with to make things safer for students. We came up with a plan to restrict access at night,” said Jonathan Scherger, a librarian in Waldo Library.
“Different things were happening and since we don’t have security in the library, public safety does walk through but they can’t be in the buildings at all times, so this was a way to limit access so we wouldn’t have quite as many problems,” Scherger said.
Community members are no longer allowed after 9 p.m. Although they won’t be necessarily removed, they are being made aware of the new policy. The computers in the library have guest log-ins for any community member, however the access does end at 8:30 p.m.
Kalamazoo citizen Dan Watts visits Waldo Library everyday. Watts usually leaves before 9 p.m. but says the new policy might affect other Kalamazoo citizens. “I know a few non-students who use this space to get food from the vending machines, rest and do what they need to do,” Watts said. “I don’t really see the problem with people who don’t go [to Western] coming to the library, and what’re they going to do, kick people out?”
Community members are still allowed in Waldo Library during the day. The Kalamazoo Public Library is also another option for community members who have library needs between 9 p.m and 2 a.m. during the school week.
“Everything I heard has been very positive. I was expecting more complaints but so far only one person has complained,” Scherger said.
The other libraries around campus like Maybee Music Library and Sangren Library are still open to community members. Since these other libraries close at 10 p.m., the late-night security measures are only for Waldo Library.