NDSU Police Officers Shouldn’t Issue Parking Tickets

FILE PHOTO | THE SPECTRUM
Should police be ticketing students?

I remember the night very well. I was walking out from the A. Glenn Hill Center after an hour-long study session. I had driven my car to campus and, to no one’s surprise, the union parking lot was full.

In a classic game of being unaware of my surroundings, I parked by the curve right in front of Dinan Residence Hall. This, of course, cost me $20.

This might seem like a popular opinion or it may seem like an easily stated complaint from a person with a million excuses.

North Dakota State police shouldn’t be issuing tickets.

This is an issue for many students parking at the wellness center and union lots where large scale ticketing has been occurring for weeks. It is not uncommon to see between five and eight cars ticketed in a row.

What is the overall job of the NDSU police department? According to their mission and values, it is to “help the campus be a safe and secure place to live, learn, work and visit …”

Nowhere in that statement does it mention ticketing cars. The only excuse for a car being cited by a police officer here at NDSU would be for impeding a safety vehicles access, or for parking in a handicap spot.

Still, though, this shouldn’t be a traditional ticket. To help the campus be safe wouldn’t a simple warning be in order? Shouldn’t a notice of illegal parking get the point across? Does a $20 ticket create a safer campus? The person is still going to move their car at the same time no matter ticket or not.

It may not seem like much but $20 is two hours of work at a reasonable job. It is groceries, it is a tank of gas. For some people, $20 is something they just can’t handle. Make the tickets smaller perhaps?

I understand safety, I understand the real world — tickets are a real thing in the real world. There are consequences for parking in an illegal spot. I can deal with that.

We, students, are paying for tuition and sometimes north of $400 for books per semester, though, can a student get a break? Can we please have our police department not issue parking tickets to our collective “broke asses” and instead have them do what they should be doing?

Protect my friends and fellow peers. Create a safer campus. These are all things we need police officers for. Offer help when it is needed and please pass on your parking duties to someone else.

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