In the wake of an alleged stabbing, several resident advisers at the off-campus Northridge Campus Residence said they have been inconvenienced by security issues and have been forced to take safety precautions into their own hands.
One RA quit her position following the Feb. 19 attack, in which a resident was allegedly accosted by two men and stabbed in the arm, according to several sources.
The alleged victim did not want to report the incident to police, sources said, and Francine Rich, director of N.C.R., said she was not informed about the stabbing, and that no N.C.R. incident report was filled out.
Following a gang-related shooting Jan. 10, N.C.R. management changed six keyed entrances to exit-only doors.
The doors have been vandalized several times, sources and management said. A plan management said they would soon be imposing, the issuing of N.C.R. identification cards, has not yet occurred. Staff members said they are bearing more responsibility, in part because of an overall lack of financial support for meaningful security improvements from N.C.R. management and Goldrich ‘ Kest, the owners of the facility.
“Costs seem to be an issue,” said Terrell Moore, head RA at N.C.R. Moore, junior psychology and Pan African studies major at CSUN, said he has repeatedly made suggestions to improve security, but was turned down by Rich because she said G ‘ K would not approve additional security costs.
G ‘ K Management did not return calls requesting comment.
Moore, a 3-year N.C.R. employee who oversees 12 RAs, purchased several walkie-talkies in order to better coordinate with other RAs.
He said his purchase of walkie-talkies for the RAs and security guards is a good example of management’s reluctance to spend money, and of the way RAs have taken safety matters into their own hands.
“The first set (of walkie-talkies) I bought was an outrage,” Moore said. “It was a crime. They reimbursed me, (but) I was warned that I could not buy any more.”
When new walkie-talkies were needed, Moore spent $200 of his own money. He makes $270 per week as a RA, plus free room and board at N.C.R.
“Cost, to me, is not an issue,” Moore said.
Cinder-block walls throughout N.C.R. sometimes make cell phone use impossible, and Moore said he wanted to make sure the RAs had a foolproof way of communicating with each other and with security. Moore said that although he understands N.C.R. is a business, and businesses are structured to make money, exceptions need to be made.
“We’re a corporation,” Moore said. “So we follow the chain of command, but you need to know when to break that command. You need to go outside the box.”
Several RAs said they would like more security officers hired (presently, one security officer works 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. nightly), and the installation of security cameras throughout the facility.
They also said they would like to see the security gate repaired in the parking facility to reduce the number of stolen and vandalized cars.
Rich said the gate has been vandalized in the past and that it would only happen again.
Several RAs, pointing out the damage done to the new exit-only doors, agreed with Rich. Problems at N.C.R. are not only attributed to management, sources said.
When reporting an incident in the complex, callers are sometimes redirected from the Los Angeles Police Department Devonshire Division to CSUN campus police, and vice versa, said Jamica Hale, RA and CSUN alumna.
“Devonshire doesn’t want to deal with us,” Hale said. “CSUN (police) don’t want to deal with us. Nine times out of 10, we have to deal with it because they don’t want to.”
That, coupled with what she said is G ‘ K’s reluctance to significantly upgrade security and maintenance at the building, makes for poor living conditions.
“This is the last priority,” Hale said. “We’re not asking for much. We want a building that’s safe and comfortable to come home to. We shouldn’t have to worry, ‘Am I going to get shot today?'”
In January, two teenage victims were assaulted inside N.C.R. after their alleged assailant asked one of the men if he belonged to a particular gang, according to a police report.