THE University of Sheffield believes the views in the open letter are not representative of the wider community - and insists it is in no way complacent about community issues, particularly anti-social behaviour.
“We make considerable financial investment in measures to improve community relations and mobilise students to develop positive neighbour relations,” said a spokesperson.
“The community experienced fewer disruptions last year than in previous years, and this is a trend which we are striving to improve year-on-year with each new intake of students.”
Many local residents feel that students make an excellent contribution to the neighbourhood, and “the University feels that the overwhelming majority of students are responsible citizens who make an active contribution to the city of Sheffield”.
Last year students raised over £160,000 for charities, most locally-based, and over 1,300 students actively volunteered in the community, including 250 supporting and encouraging learning and achievement in schools. “We are very proud of these achievements.”
In being a good neighbour, the University arranges and participates in many community events, such as working with the Students’ Union and Broomhill Forum on a clean-up day in the Broomhill library garden. It liaises regularly with the police and covers the cost of extra police patrols around campus at busy times of the year. It participates in council-led “Good Neighbours, Great Communities” meetings and provides a 24 hour, 365 day a year security line for residents to report any anti-social behaviour.
“The University looks forward to continuing to work with the local community to improve our neighbourhood relations in every way possible. We are open to discussion and we welcome constructive dialogue with local people and groups towards our mutual aim of making Sheffield a great place to live.”