OUSU is to investigate the current usage of the Safety Bus, alongside current efforts to promote usage of the service, according to a motion passed in 1st week.
The service, which is organised jointly by OUSU and the Oxford Brookes Student Union (OBSU), currently has a proposed grant of £12,000 from OUSU, and it is with this in mind that OUSU has asked the Women’s and Charities and Communities’ Vice Presidents to review the service, in order to assess whether the size of the grant is justified.
At the same time, OBSU, who provide £14,000 each year in funding for the Safety Bus according to Charities and Communities VP Daniel Stone, has ordered a review of the service from their point of view.
Stone, who has used the Safety Bus himself, on one occasion to get to hospital after an injury sustained during football training, said the OUSU review would involve a university-wide survey and visits to Common Rooms.
He also said that the review would look at deciding who should be in charge of the service in future, as it currently falls under the jurisdiction of both the Charities and Communities’ and Women’s VPs. However, the responsibility for making students aware of the service would continue to rest with college Common Rooms.
Second year LMH student Rosemary Hurford said she felt it was “reassuring to know that it is a reliable and safe way to get home should you become separated from friends or far from home on a night out”.
Somervillian Laura Cooper-Schwalb said students might be embarrassed at having to use it owing to the lack of privacy, contrasting it with using a taxi to get home. However, she did also share the opinion that it was “a very good idea to have it there just in case”.
Students can call the Safety Bus any time between 9pm and 3am for transportation within Oxford for £1, and it is run by volunteers from both universities.