University of Rochester to arm 38 officers in hospital ED

The president of the University of Rochester (N.Y.) authorized the arming of 38 public safety officers to address safety concerns on a 24/7 basis in the university's medical center's emergency department.

The decision takes heed of reported threats, assaults and pulled weapons from ED staff. University President Joel Seligman wrote in a letter that 230 knives, eight guns and 33 other weapons have been seized in the medical center between 2013 and 2015.

In the letter, Mr. Seligman wrote URMC and the Department of Public Safety will also review whether the ED entrances should be equipped with metal detectors. While body cameras and tasers were considered, they will not be implemented at this point.

"I am persuaded that it would be wise to take steps to deter the potential of unacceptable violence to our employees, patients and visitors," Mr. Seligman wrote in the letter.

The medical center already has some law enforcement officers present, but not on a 24/7 basis.

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