Campus Violence Protection Plan
It is the mission of IVCC to prevent violence on campus by promoting cooperation and communication in all phases of the prevention, management, and resolution of incidents.
The safety and security of the Illinois Valley Community College campus and community are very important. Our students, employees, and visitors should be able to pursue their education, work, and other activities in a safe, non-threatening environment. Unfortunately, violence can occur. To educate and empower all members of the College community, resources and procedures are in place to prevent, deter, and respond to concerns regarding acts of violence. The College also offers workshops to assist departments and individuals in detecting indicators for concern and resources to protect themselves and their environments. Safety is everyone’s responsibility.
Training on the content and use of this plan will be provided initially and supplemented with follow-up training regularly. This plan will be updated as needed in order to reflect changes in personnel and contact information as well as innovations in response. Copies of this plan will be maintained at these strategic locations: President’s Office, Campus Security Office, Community Relations Office, and the Business Office; and will also be posted on the College’s website.
Violence Not Tolerated
Violence, threats or implied threats of violence, and intimidation (verbal or physical acts intended to frighten or coerce) impede the goal of providing a safe environment and will not be tolerated. All students, employees, and visitors are covered by this policy as well as the policies referenced below. This policy applies to conduct on “campus,” which by definition is not limited to the main campus property but includes all property owned or used by the College.
As indicated in the policies below, weapons are not permitted on the campus except for purposes of law enforcement or as specially authorized for purposes of instruction, research, or service.
The College will pursue disciplinary, student judicial, or civil or criminal action as appropriate under the circumstances against any person who violates this policy by engaging in violence, threats of violence, or intimidation.
Students, employees, and visitors should address emergencies by calling 911.
For all other non-emergency concerns of violence, the students, employees, and visitors should notify Campus Security at extension 314, or 815-739-1290, or by contacting a member of the Threat Assessment Group:
VP for Learning and Student Development ext. 405
VP for Business Services and Finance ext. 419
Associate VP for Student Services ext. 381
The College has adopted procedures for responding to and addressing conduct that violates this policy and urges all students, employees, and visitors to be alert to the possibility of violence on campus. As part of the College community, all students, employees, and visitors are responsible for reporting violence they experience or witness.
The Campus Safety Team (CST) is an administrative group formed to promote awareness and responsiveness across campus to avoid or address situations that may involve violence, threats, or intimidation. In addition, a Threat Management Team, which is part of CST, may assist the Campus Security Office and departments across campus in assessing the potential for violence and to recommend interventions to de-escalate and prevent such situations where the potential for violence is possible. The CST is a confidential body; while it may be working to address a situation, it may not be able to publicly disclose its assessment, plans, or actions.
Resources and Preparedness
Illinois Valley Community College, as part of its annual communication on safety, will inform individuals of this policy and its related procedures and resources.
Confidentiality of complaints and parties will be preserved to the greatest extent possible, understanding that the College may have an obligation to take some action even if the complainant is reluctant to proceed. Parties and witnesses to a complaint are also expected to maintain confidentiality of the matter, understanding that they will often not have all the facts and that they could impair the investigation by divulging information to persons outside of the investigatory process.
Non-Retaliation and False Claims
The College prohibits retaliation against persons who in good faith report violations of this policy or cooperate in an investigation. The College also prohibits the filing of knowingly false or misleading reports and providing knowingly false or misleading information in an investigation. Discipline or other action can result from either of these acts of violation of this policy.
Procedures for Supporting a Violence-Free Campus
As part of the College’s policy on a Violence-Free Campus, the College has adopted the following procedures and resources that students, employees, and visitors may use to prevent and address acts of violence, threats, and intimidation.
Stop Immediate Threat or Harm – Report It
You should call 911 for emergencies. Please do not ignore or disregard violence or threats against you or others – the College needs your assistance to make our campus safe. When you encounter immediate or imminent danger, call 911.
If you are experiencing or observing an immediate threatening or violent situation, you are responsible for alerting local law enforcement as soon as you are able. Delaying your report may unnecessarily allow the behavior to continue, harm your own well-being, or jeopardize the investigation due to the passage of time, fading memories, or departure of witnesses.
Local law enforcement agencies will coordinate their response with the College’s Campus Security Office.
As a member of the College community, you are encouraged to report other behavior that is unusual or threatening, even if you do not perceive the risk as immediately dangerous or imminent. To report other concerns that may not pose immediate threats, you may contact Campus Security at extension 314, or 815-739-1290.
If you have concerns over the conduct of a student, employee, or visitor on campus, you should inform a member of the IVCC Threat Assessment Group in addition to notifying Safety Services:
VP for Learning and Student Development ext. 405
VP for Business Services and Finance ext. 419
Associate VP for Student Services ext. 381
In all cases, be sure to communicate that you feel the behavior involves violence or a violation of the policy on a Violence-Free Campus. You may be asked to provide your complaint in writing.
If a supervisor receives a complaint that the policy on a Violence-Free Campus has been violated, the supervisor is responsible for informing the Threat Assessment Group. If disciplinary action against the accused is required, such action shall be taken in accordance with the applicable contract, policy, or handbook for that employee’s classification.
Preparedness: How You Can Help Prevent and Mitigate Violent Situations
Do not ignore a potentially violet situation. On the other hand, do not unnecessarily put yourself at risk of danger – call Campus Security at 314 or local law enforcement at 911.
Management of Concerns
The Campus Safety Team (CST) is an administrative group formed to promote awareness and responsiveness across campus to avoid or address situations that may involve violence, threats, or intimidation. In addition, a Threat Management Team, which is part of CST, may assist the Campus Security Office and departments across campus to assess the potential for violence and to recommend interventions to de-escalate and prevent such situations where that is possible. The Threat Management Team is a confidential body; so while it may be working to address a situation, it may not be able to publicly disclose its assessment, plans, or actions.
Similarly, while the College, including the Campus Security Office, will work with the complainant to keep him or her informed of the investigation and procedures, please understand that not all action taken against an accused can be revealed if it is confidential. If you have questions about a complaint you have made, you may contact a member of the Threat Assessment Group or the central administration to see if there is any information that can be released.
Recovery from a Violent Situation
After a violent situation occurs, the affected employees, students, or families may often face difficulties in resolving their feelings and concerns. As situations are assessed, the CST can facilitate group discussions or debriefing sessions as needed for the affected area to provide some understanding of and closure to the situation. The affected students or employees could also seek assistance from CST in the recovery process. Please also know that the Employee Assistance Program and the Student Counseling Center are available as resources.
Protective Orders/Restraining Orders Issued by a Court
If you have a protective order or restraining order that covers you at the College, you should notify your supervisor if you are an employee. Employees and students should provide a copy of the order to the Threat Assessment Group and to the Campus Security Office.
In some cases, it may be reasonable for the College to take interim measures or impose restrictions on contact with persons who may be subject to a threat of violence. In addition, the College may also revoke permission of persons violating this policy from remaining on campus.
Weapon on Campus:
If a weapon is brought to campus, there is a range of possibilities of where and what the weapon might be, as well as motivation and intended plan of action. An assessment of each situation will determine the response.
Without placing themselves at risk, on-scene personnel should attempt to determine:
- Has the subject been seen with the weapon or is the subject actively displaying or using the weapon?
- Is the subject aware the weapon has been observed?
- Is the weapon identifiable? How many weapons are observed?
- Has the subject harmed others or just made threats?
- Is the subject stationary or mobile? If mobile, what direction of travel?
If confronted by an offender:
- Focus on reducing tensions. Stay calm and rational.
- Be aware of non-verbal signals you send, e.g., body position, eye contact, etc.
- Do not rush the offender.
- Focus on the offender, not the weapon.
It is possible that students, faculty, staff, and visitors could be in close proximity to or drawn into a hostage crisis. The ability to act appropriately will be of extreme importance to the safety of all. Your actions during a crisis will enhance your chances of survival.
- Stay calm and obey the orders of the hostage taker(s). Do not become confrontational or antagonistic. Do not debate, argue, or discuss political issues with the hostage taker(s) or other hostage(s). Avoid whispering or raising your voice.
- Keep movements to a minimum and in view. Try to locate everyone as far away from windows, doors, and the hostage taker(s) as possible.
- Answer all questions unless your answer may pose a threat to the hostage taker’s ideology.
- Inform the hostage taker(s) of any medical conditions or disabilities of hostages.
- Do not discuss possible actions to be taken by police or other agencies.
In the case of one of the above occurrences, you will receive instructions either by telephone or verbally from responding staff. Directions for evacuation may be given along with safe routes. Once the decision to evacuate is made, it is mandatory.
The Campus Security Office and Facilities Office will be notified of the situation and may be asked to assist. This assistance could be in the form of shutting down elevators and/or power or in aiding in an evacuation. Campus First Responders will be notified so they can prepare to render any necessary first aid once the scene is secured.
The Oglesby Police Department will notify campus administrators as soon as possible so they can use their influence to assure proper adherence to safety procedures as directed.
COLLEGE STAFF RESPONSE
- Dial 911. Give address — Illinois Valley Community College. Give your name, extension and location, the last known location for the intruder, and any descriptive information available. If possible, stay on the line until instructed to disconnect by the operator. The 911 dispatcher will call Campus Security. In medical emergencies, Campus Security will page the Campus First Responders.
- All doors should be locked. Students and staff should remain out of sight and stay low to the ground. The lights should be turned off, blinds should be drawn, and everyone should stay quiet until further instructions are given by authorized personnel. Cell phone usage should be minimized.
- If the order is given to evacuate, follow evacuation procedures calmly.
- After the incident, Campus Security will complete an Incident Response Form and will critique the incident with appropriate college administration.
- Oglesby Police officers respond to area and determine level of threat.
- Officers establish perimeter and control access until sufficient level of deployment to proceed arrives.
- Determine if evacuation is appropriate; if so, conduct evacuation.
- Appropriate enforcement action is taken.
- Medical aid is rendered, as needed.
- Follow-up investigations begin.
- Assess need for post-incident counseling.
- Reports provided to IVCC Safety Services, Administration, and Community Relations.
The term “crisis” can be applied to any one of a number of situations that may occur at the College or in some way affect the institution. A crisis could consist of major catastrophes such as natural disasters, terrorist attacks, bomb threats, outbreaks of violence, or any number of other types of emergency situations.
Sometimes a crisis can develop out of nowhere. It may take the form of public attacks on the College or its administration, student or faculty protests, accusations of ecological mismanagement, or student cheating. In many of the previously mentioned instances, a crisis may be unavoidable.
If not handled properly, it could permanently damage the sharing of correct, accurate, and timely information with the media by the Community Relations Office. When accurate information is dispersed quickly, rumors are stopped, nerves are calmed, and a continuous flow of information indicates that people are working on the problem. To that end, the responsibility of keeping the media informed in a crisis situation is delegated to the Director of Community Relations at the following phone number:
Director of Community Relations: (815) 224-0466 or 224-0465
By centralizing the release of all crisis-related information in the Community Relations Office, common pitfalls are avoided with the following results:
- Information shared is consistent;
- Seasoned professionals know what the media is entitled to, compared to what they want;
- The College avoids embarrassment; and
- Established sources are utilized.
The College president may designate a spokesperson to respond to the media. That person should consider the following guidelines before responding:
What happened? Do not give detailed descriptions. Describe the situation with a broad overview.
Who was involved? Remember, if there are casualties, the media is NOT to receive this information unless it is released from the designated media contact person. Never place blame.
When? Simply pinpoint the time.
What caused it? Never speculate. Respond that the cause is not known but is being investigated.
How much damage? Do not speculate. Explain that it is impossible to determine so soon. Do not get drawn into speculative “what if” questions.
CHECKLIST FOR THREAT ASSESSMENT AND MANAGEMENT
The following steps are to be taken after a threat has been made. Some steps may be taken concurrently or in a different order than shown, depending on the circumstances.
1. __ CONVENE AND NOTIFY: Convene the Threat Assessment Group: Site administrators, mental health professionals, and Safety Services personnel.
A. __ Identify the specific threat and determine the degree of impact on the school.
B. __ Determine the level of risk. The categories are:
__ Category 1: High violence potential; qualifies for immediate arrest or hospitalization.
__ Category 2: High violence potential; does not qualify for arrest or hospitalization.
__ Category 3: Insufficient evidence for violence potential; sufficient evidence for the repetitive/intentional infliction of emotional distress upon others.
__ Category 4: Insufficient evidence for violence potential; sufficient evidence for the unintentional infliction of emotional distress upon others.
__ Category 5: Insufficient evidence for violence potential; insufficient evidence for emotional distress upon others.
C. __ Determine whether additional support is needed and request it if appropriate:
__Threat Assessment/Management Team or Larger Group
__ Law enforcement agency
__ Mental Health Agency – Psychiatric Emergency Team
2. __ ASSESS & INVESTIGATE: In assessing the validity, review the warning signs and all background information of the individuals; interview witnesses, staff, peers, etc.
A. __ Review history, using a questioning and skeptical mind set
1. Copy of student Identification Information (SIS)
2. Copy of Social Adjustment/Discipline record
3. Copy of Attendance record
4. Copy of most recent report card and/or progress report
5. Copy of Health record
6. Other pertinent information (IEP, written material, email, pictures, etc.)
B. __ Interview individuals on campus who had contact with the student. (Refer to 11 key questions below)
1. What was said? To whom?
2. What was written? To whom?
3. What was done?
4. When and where did this occur?
5. Who else observed this behavior?
6. Did the student say why he or she acted as he or she did?
C. __ Interview students who may have been threatened and friends of the student. (Refer to "11 key questions")
D. __ Interview the student
E. __ Interview the relatives if needed (last).
1. __ Identify any new family or individual stressors, including changes in the family, loss or separation, or violence at home or in the neighborhood.
2. __ Ask if the student or any member of the family is currently receiving counseling.
3. __MAKE A TEAM RECOMMENDATION: Make the decision with the input of the other team members.
A. __ Implement an intervention plan
B. __ Monitor progress toward reestablishing school safety
C. __ Reconvene the team when necessary
D. __ Decisions made and actions taken should result in:
1. __ Contact with and/or apprehension of person(s) who initiated the threat
2. __ Warning and protection for the targeted victim(s) of the threat.
3. __ Disciplinary action, if needed.
4. __ Continuation of a safe school environment.
4. __DOCUMENT: Document all steps taken. Strict confidentiality about student information should be kept among team members and appropriate District staff.
11 KEY QUESTIONS
Evaluation of information gathered from research and interviews conducted during a threat assessment inquiry should be guided by the following 11 key questions:
1. What are the student’s motive(s) and goals?
A. What motivated the student to make the statements or take the actions that caused him or her to come to attention?
B. Does the situation or circumstance that led to these statements or actions still exist?
C. Does the student have a major grievance or grudge? Against whom?
D. What efforts have been made to resolve the problem and what has been the result? Does the potential attacker feel that any part of the problem is resolved or see any alternatives?
2. Have there been any communications suggesting ideas or intent to attack?
A. What, if anything, ahs the student communicated to someone else (targets, friends, other students, teachers, family, others) or written in a diary, journal, or Web site concerning his or her ideas and/or intentions?
B. Have friends been alerted or “warned away”?
3. Has the subject shown inappropriate interest in any of the following:
A. School attacks or attackers;
B. Weapons (including the recent acquisition of any relevant weapon);
C. Incidents of mass violence (terrorism, workplace violence, mass murderers).
4. Has the student engaged in attack-related behaviors? These behaviors might include:
A. Developing an attack idea or plan;
B. Making efforts to acquire or practice with weapons;
C. Casing, or checking out, possible sites and areas for attack;
D. Rehearsing attacks or ambushes.
5. Does the student have the means to carry out an act of targeted violence?
A. How organized is the student’s thinking and behavior?
B. Does the student have the means, e.g., access to a weapon, to carry out an attack?
6. Is the student experiencing hopelessness, desperation, and/or despair?
A. Is there information to suggest that the student is experiencing desperation and/or despair?
B. Has the student experienced a recent failure, loss and/or loss of status?
C. Is the student known to be having difficulty coping with a stressful event?
D. Is the student now, or has the student ever been suicidal or “accident-prone”?
E. Has the student engaged in behavior that suggests that he or she has considered ending his or her life?
7. Does the student have a trusting relationship with at least one responsible adult?
A. Does the student have at least one relationship with an adult where the student feels that he or she can confide in the adult and believes that the adult will listen without judging or jumping to conclusions? (Students with trusting relationships with adults may be directed away from violence and despair and toward hope.)
B. Is the student emotionally connected to – or disconnected from – other students?
C. Has the student previously come to someone’s attention or raised concern in a way that suggested he or she needs intervention or supportive services?
8. Does the student see violence as an acceptable – or desirable – or the only – way to solve problems?
A. Does the setting around the student (friends, fellow students, parents, teachers, adults) explicitly or implicitly support or endorse violence as a way of resolving problems or disputes?
B. Has the student been “dared” by others to engage in an act of violence?
9. Is the student’s conversation and “story” consistent with his or her actions?
A. Does information from collateral interviews and from the student’s own behavior confirm or dispute what the student says is going on?
10. Are other people concerned about the student’s potential for violence?
A. Are those who know the student concerned that he or she might take action based on violent ideas or plans?
B. Are those who know the student concerned about a specific target?
C. Have those who know the student witnessed recent changes or escalations in mood and behavior?
11. What circumstances might affect the likelihood of an attack?
A. What factors in the student’s life and/or environment might increase or decrease the likelihood that the student will attempt to mount an attack at school?
B. What is the response of other persons who know about the student’s ideas or plan to mount an attack? (Do those who know about the student’s ideas actively discourage the student from acting violently, encourage the student to attack, deny the possibility of violence, passively collude with an attack, etc.?)