The disagreements about safety revolve more around Public Safety's role on campus than whether they generate safety on campus. With emergency phones aplenty and lights keeping the most traveled night paths bright, the basic safety on this suburban campus is unarguable. The loudest complaint regarding Public Safety regards their unwillingness to retrieve stranded students off campus in bad weather. Some students scoff and wonder how effective the cops, who sometimes patrol the campus sleepily, can be. But in the unusual event that a student or an on-duty cop feels the slightest danger, the situation is controlled and students are notified of precautions they should take. Strangers sighted in dorms, despite the fact that these strangers are usually an unannounced brother or friend, cause common "alarms." There are, however, occasional occurrences of theft in the libraries or dorm rooms.
Two forces keep Bryn Mawr honest: Public Safety's vigilant patrols and the college's Social Honor Code. This code is held sacred on campus. Given the revered nature of the honor code, most students feel very comfortable leaving their possessions unattended in the library and sometimes neglect to lock their dorm rooms. This creates one of the biggest problems for Public Safety, as this behavior allows for thieves from off campus to do their work. Each year there are a few reports of stolen wallets and purses from the libraries, usually while students were just a few feet away. Still, most students are as vigilant as they need to be, considering the location of campus, and do not experience theft.