By Caroline Tilly Asher, BANA Secretary
Thanks to neighbors and guests who joined BANA Board members for a great BANA meeting in September. We had special guests from the Durham Police Department and Duke University to focus on the special topic of party houses in our neighborhood. Lynne Bahrami, BANA President, facilitated a thoughtful and productive conversation. BANA residents are concerned about noise, safety, and trash that come from large parties.
Durham Police reported 22 calls in the last year due to noisy parties. They can only respond when we call. In general, the first time the police come out they offer a warning before issuing a ticket. The second time the police are called out for the same party, the party is closed down and tickets are offered. The police do not always interact with Duke to let them know about tickets issued to students.
Duke representatives expressed a strong willingness to work in collaboration with BANA and concerned neighbors to stop these problem parties. They shared that students have to sign an agreement with Duke in order to live off campus and that they can receive citations on their student record.
All agree that we need to focus on this issue to keep our neighborhood safe and free of problem parties. We can address this issue in the short term by trying to prevent and stop party houses. There is still a need to address the longer-term issue of how houses are repeatedly rented to student groups who are known to have large parties without repercussion from land lords and pass on leases within their social networks.
- Refer to the Fraternity House Protocol, developed by concerned community members across Durham, for ideas and strategies.
- Get to know your neighbors. Often you can call, text, or drop by and let the party folks know that things are getting too loud. That can be enough!
- If a party persists or it’s not the right call to contact your neighbors directly, call the police to report a noisy and disruptive party.
- Consider contacting your neighbors (you can use the listserv) to encourage them to call police as well.
- Send an email to Duke (firstname.lastname@example.org) to let them know that you have called the police
Thanks again to all those who attended and see you at the next BANA meeting!