GBC security helps students register their bicycles with Toronto Police
Stacey Andrews, the head of Public Safety and Security at George Brown College (GBC) knows what it’s like to have a bicycle stolen.
“When I was younger, we’re talking many years ago, I had my bicycle stolen from my driveway in front of a car.”
Andrews says 24 bicycles were stolen at GBC between May 2014 and April 2015, at least that’s how many were reported—the actual number is likely much higher.
A total of 3,456 bikes in Toronto were reported as stolen in 2012, the last year that the Toronto Police have released a statistical report for on their website.
According to Andrews, no bikes reported as stolen at GBC have been recovered, and part of that reason is that very few bicycles are registered with the Toronto Police.
For two weeks at the start of the school year GBC’s public safety and security office will have laptops set up in the main lobby at the three major campuses by the security offices and welcome desk where students can register their bicycles with the Toronto Police.
GBC security will also have bike registration forms that students can fill out if they don’t have all of the information on them, and then hand back into either GBC security or police. You can also register your bike on the Toronto Police website.
“I hope people register because it does make a difference,” says Andrews. “It really does.”
In addition to the bicycle registration campaign, Andrews says she increases patrols outside during the influx of new student cyclists. Security guards check out the bike racks and put flyers on bikes telling students about how to help keep their bike safe.
Some tips that Toronto police have for preventing bike thefts are:
- Register your bicycle with the police.
- Use a good quality locking device such as a hardened steel “U” shaped lock, or a hardened steel chain and padlock
- Lock your bicycle and both wheels to an immovable object that cannot be easily cut or broken.
Andrews has one more, “don’t bring a bicycle that’s worth a few thousand dollars, you know it’s going to be targeted. What I see some people do in this city is they get a cheap bike that they use for riding around.”
If there’s a spike in reported bike thefts in a short period of time Andrews’ team of investigators will work to identify the suspect and send security-camera images to police and security at all campuses. Investigators will even comb through Kijiji for items that students have reported as stolen.
“We understand, it’s students’ hard-earned money that they spend on these items and we try and do what we can,” says Andrews.