How Safe Are We In The Heights Of Loyola?

1585 words - 7 pages

Whether you are driving from C.P. Garcia, Commonwealth or White Plains, you can tell where you are by spotting the towering buildings of Berkeley Residences or SM Blue. When you happen to drive by this area, you can definitely feel the busy atmosphere with students and professionals here and there either with a handful of papers to work on or just hanging out with their friends or colleagues, and the air of rush hour in the morning and the afternoon. But in spite of the frustrations of this crowded place brings daily, you can never deny the beauty of Barangay Loyola Heights, home to several academic institutions such as the Ateneo de Manila University, and where the concrete jungle and ...view middle of the document...

That is why Barangay Loyola Heights needs to implement a curfew and maximize security around Katipunan Avenue, Esteban Abada St. and Xavierville Avenue and collaborate with institutions along these areas for the safety of its residents, pedestrians and students alike.

Loyola Heights has never been safe for pedestrians at night and even in broad daylight. The number of crimes in the area has been escalating since the first week of December 2013 and the most common cases that have been reported are of hold-up at knifepoint or gunpoint. ADSAOverBoard, the online portal of ADSA Student Deputies, posted a security bulletin regarding two cases of hold-up incidents and one case of motorcycle-riding-in-tandem which occurred on the first week of December 2013; the former incidents took place at 9:00 PM and after midnight, while the latter happened at 11:45 AM. There are also reports on theft and robbery last January. All of these crime cases involve Loyola Schools students. But more reports of similar incidents involve non-Ateneans and that is reason enough to exercise vigilance in the area.
Moreover, commuters who frequent the jeepney terminal under the flyover leading to Katipunan Extension, Eastwood and other places in Quezon City and the Katipunan LRT Station are not safe. This particular area is known to be the most dangerous part of Katipunan not only because it is poorly lit but it is where suspicious individuals roam especially in the late hours of night as well. I know this because I have braved walking from the South Exit of the LRT Station to the overpass leading to the safety of the crowd, but the thing is, the flight of stairs to the overpass is where these mysterious group of teenagers who appeared to be inhaling an unknown substance from a plastic bag which I assumed to be rugby. Never in my whole life have I felt so threatened and afraid just by walking past these suspicious-looking people.
Another concern is the presence of individuals who might be selling illegal drugs, or under the influence. A friend of mine told me once when he was walking back to our dormitory after shopping for groceries in Rustan’s Supermarket, a suspicious looking man approached him and offered to sell him “Shabu,” street name for the illegal drug methamphetamine. Who knows what this person is capable of doing, he is probably using the recreational drug or was under the effects of it when he was selling my friend his product. Being cautious or street smart is not enough; any or all individuals like this will be controlled with the curfew.
We all know the good the curfew will bring to the residents of Barangay Loyola Heights and it will be done for a good reason: to minimize crime incidents and to put pedestrians, students and citizens in safety; but we also need to look closely at the consequences. Last November 2013 when Typhoon Yolanda hit the country and left the locals of Leyte with almost nothing, looting for the sake of survival was rampant and to stop...

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