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MU Responds to Security Taskforce Recommendations

Aug. 21, 2007

Story Contact:  Christian Basi, 573-882-4430,

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Today, the 29-member Campus Security Task Force, appointed by Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt, issued recommendations for every Missouri university and college. University of Missouri-Columbia Police Chief Jack Watring served on the Task Force.

“Our No. 1 priority is the safety of more than 38,000 students, faculty and staff,” MU Chancellor Brady Deaton said. “Due to the size and complexity of the University, which resembles a small city, it is vital that we have the proper procedures and training in place in the event of an emergency. We are pleased to note that we have already incorporated many of the Task Force's recommendations in our emergency plans. We also are fortunate to be home to the MU Extension Fire and Rescue Training Institute that serves the entire state, and we have utilized their expertise in developing our emergency plan.”

“The MU Fire and Rescue Training Institute (MU FRTI) continues to be recognized for its excellence in programming and the training of Missouri's emergency first responders, as well as the operational assistance it provides in times of emergencies to the state,” said Michael Ouart, vice provost for MU Extension. “MU FRTI also provided assistance in six presidential disaster declarations and one emergency declaration in Missouri during FY07. MU FRTI has an ongoing commitment to train current and future generations of fire and emergency service personnel so they will always be prepared, safe, and ready to be our emergency first responders in the protection of our citizens whether that be on the MU campus or anywhere in the state of Missouri.”

The MU FRTI, established in 1933, offers continuing professional education to more than 25,000 career and volunteer firefighters throughout the state of Missouri who serve nearly 900 local fire departments and fire protection districts, allied emergency service personnel, and private sector and institutional emergency brigade members. In late 2000, MU FRTI expanded its mission to provide counter-terrorism and emergency management training and services statewide.

Since inception, these programs have expanded beyond their original scope and provide quality classroom and field training to local responders, military personnel, state and local governments, private companies, and extension specialists on a wide range of subjects dealing with terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, and crisis and consequence management. In 2005, MU FRTI instructors participated in a regional seminar on emergency preparedness in Kansas City.