A pat down with your pint

Thanks to new security measures students don’t have to wait until the end of the night to get felt up at the Den.

The Students’ Union has upped security at the campus watering-hole since September, and pat downs, bag checks along with ID scans are mandatory during busy periods and after concerts in MacEwan Hall.

“I understand people could find it a little impersonal but one knife could kill someone,” said SU Vice-President Operations and Finance Joel Lockwood.

Lockwood explained the searches don’t occur every night but the bouncers are extra vigilant during concerts on campus, which bring non-student patrons to the Den.

“During times like the [recent] Dropkick Murphys concert there are more people that wouldn’t be around the campus or the Den,” explained Lockwood, adding the majority of violent incidents in the past were committed by people from off campus.

Patrons who don’t like being patted down may have to wear tighter pants, since only patrons dressed in clothes which could conceal a weapon are searched. Bouncers are also performing purse checks on female patrons.

In addition to the new security pat down, the Den is continuing to use an ID scanning system, which records the IDs of everyone in the Den.

“We have a zero tolerance policy towards violence,” explained Lockwood. “Any violence can result in a three-month to forever suspension. Violent acts are an automatic ban for life.”

The SU currently has a roster of about 160 students who have been sentenced to a Den ban for anywhere from one month to life.

Some students are concerned the new security measures are too stringent. Fifth year economics student Jeremy Hale thought the bouncers were unfair when they wouldn’t let his friend in for a keychain infraction.

“My friend had one of those multi-tools and it had a knife the size of a nail file,” said Hale. “It was just a key chain. They said ‘we can’t let you’ in and they wouldn’t let him put it in his locker or get rid of it.”

Though some students view the increased security as an invasion of privacy, second year mechanical engineering student and frequent Den patron Mike Biggs isn’t averse to a little extra protection on busy nights.

“On a Thursday night I think it’s necessary because you can’t walk from one end of the bar to the other because it’s so crowded,” said Biggs. “Once I walk in I forget about it.”

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