Strict new tailgating rules attempt to keep students safe
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New code will no longer allow students to bring alcohol into games
Administrators are cracking down on behavioral issues at student tailgates, with a set of new rules that promise to cut out much of what has identified the activity at UNLV.
The regulations will ban students from bringing alcohol into the tailgating space, require ID checks at the gate to Star Nursery Field, prohibit students from driving vehicles into the area and limit the privilege of amplified sound to CSUN and approved vendors.
The new code will be enforced by the Office of Student Conduct and UNLV Police. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department will patrol areas not designated for tailgating.
Though money was spent this year already to bolster security at football games, no additional cost will be incurred in enforcing the rules.
“We want you to have fun at the tailgate,” said Juanita Fain, UNLV vice president for student affairs, speaking to CSUN Monday. “We want you to go to the game, but we also want you to be safe.”
The changes come after administrators observed what they deemed to be dangerous behavior among students, especially at the Oct. 2 football game versus the University of Nevada, Reno.
“I don’t know how many of you went to the UNLV-UNR game, but it was horrible,” Fain told CSUN. “It was very dangerous.”
Alleged dangers included extreme inebriation, drinking and driving, and an inability to move crowds in the case of an emergency because of noise and chaotic massing of students.
“The problem is that people are showing up to the 4 [p.m.] tailgate at 3:55 and leaving the game at 7:05 [p.m.] completely obliterated,” said CSUN Chief Counsel Jon Goldman, who served last year as director of Campus Life and organized the CSUN tailgates.
Undergraduate Student Body President David Rapoport has opposed the new code, arguing the restrictions represent a move “from one extreme to the other,” explained that a lot will change as a result of the policy.
“Before, the field was just one big area, and cars could pull up, set up tables and play drinking games,” Rapoport said, explaining that now, the tailgating area will be split in two, with the west side designated for student use and the east reserved for existing tailgate pass holders.
Registered tailgaters will be able to pull vehicles onto the east-side lot but no amplified sound will be allowed there.
Rapoport said he will “have to take a black eye” for the issue, explaining that his protests on behalf of what he believes is a more balanced, student-friendly stance, have not been accepted.
“This is something that is completely over my head,” Rapoport said. “Dr. Fain and I have had multiple arguments about this. I have had multiple arguments with the president of the university about this.”
To a question from a CSUN senator as to whether the administration would consider plans of compromise if students presented them, Fain said, “Of course we would.”
But, she warned, a change to the new plan is unlikely.
Still, Rapoport solicited the input of student leaders in solving the issue.
“If you guys have any suggestions, I’d love to hear them,” he said. “I’d love to go back to the table and say, ‘Here are these 10 ideas.’”
CSUN Elections Director Sarah Saenz asserted that the revisions seem to have come out of nowhere, with little student input.
“I feel like this is just going to happen,” she said.
The primary concern voiced among student representatives at the Monday meeting centered on game attendance.
“Yes, it will be safer but what if people stop going?” asked Senate President Pro Tempore Ricardo Casillas, of the college of business.
He asked for a “backup plan,” to be applied if attendance drops sharply as a result of the new code.
“We hope that the main reason students are coming is to go to the game,” Fain said. “We don’t have a backup plan right now.”
Goldman predicted a drop in attendance but argued in favor of the regulations.
“This is the best thing that could happen right now,” Goldman said. “The last thing we need to hear is that something happened to a student, maybe one of our own.”
He encouraged CSUN representatives to “take [the changes] in stride.”