Police Services/Public Safety

Police Services/Public Safety

Police Services/Public Safety

Campus Safety: Keeping Our Campuses Safe

Identifying, Assessing, and Reducing Threatening and Concerning Behaviors in Order to Foster a Safe Campus Environment

A safe working, teaching and learning environment is a right of all members of the Southwest community. We take a Zero Tolerance approach to threats, intimidation, or actual violence against a member of our college community. All reported cases of violence (actual or threatened) will be investigated. We may look at internal disciplinary action and/or refer the matter to the local police.

If you have been or are aware of concerning or threatening behavior occurring, please report it through our Behavior Intervention Form. However, if you are or feel you are in immediate danger please call Public Safety at 901-333-4242 or 901-333-5555. You can also call this number for confidential advice regarding concerning, inappropriate or threatening behaviors.

Behavioral and Threat Assessments (BETA)
A Behavioral and Threat Assessment (BETA) is a multi-disciplinary group whose purpose is meeting regularly to support its target audience (students, faculty, staff) via an established protocol. The team tracks “red flags” over time, detecting patterns, trends, and disturbances in individual or group behavior. The team receives reports of disruptive, problematic or concerning behavior or misconduct from co-workers, community members, friends, colleagues, etc., conducts an investigation, performs a threat assessment, and determines the best mechanisms for support, intervention, warning/notification and response.

Behavior Intervention is:

  • Not Crises Response/Management.
  • Not Threat Assessment.
  • A professional structured approach to address a Person of Concern (POC) by deescalating harmful behaviors.

What is Behavior Intervention:

  • A threat Assessment is a component of what the Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT) do, not the sole focus.
  • A Threat Assessment Team (TAT), by definition, assesses “threat” in the same way a “Risk Assessment Team” assesses ‘risk.”
  • BITs seek to assist all students, faculty, and staff who are heading toward “risk” or “threat” to self or others.) BITs can also be interested in external threats/risks.

Responding to concerning and threatening behaviors

The following information offers simple and practical advice for our faculty, staff and students to be able to respond to inappropriate, concerning and threatening behavior. It also stresses the importance of discussing such behavior with appropriate College staff. Staff and students are encouraged to report all incidents of concerning or threatening behavior.

Defining inappropriate, concerning and threatening behavior

Inappropriate, concerning or threatening behavior from staff, students or visitors requires a careful response that maximizes open communication, provides firm limits on unacceptable behavior, and prevents escalation to violence or other serious incidents thereby promoting the safety of everyone involved.

Inappropriate or concerning behaviors may include:

  • Unwanted attention
  • Unusually persistent complaining
  • Intentional theft
  • Pornography use which takes place on the Southwest Computer Networks and/or affects others
  • Sexual harassment (unwelcome sexual conduct of any kind)
  • All other behavior, not mentioned that is concerning and inappropriate e.g. revealing inappropriate knowledge of personal information, or demanding unwarranted special consideration.

Threatening behaviors may include:

  • Angry, aggressive communications
  • An uttered threat to kill, harm another or damage property
  • Stalking (repeated attempts to impose unwanted communication or contact which elicit concern)
  • Bullying (repeated, unreasonable conduct in the workplace)
  • An uttered threat to self-harm or suicide
  • Any act of physical violence, property damage, or production of a weapon
  • Violent critical incident on campus

Concerns for safety and security:

  • Do not approach suspicious people or situations if you do not feel comfortable
  • Observe as much as possible from a safe distance and note your observations as soon as practicable
  • Contact Public Safety if you require an immediate response

Remember, the accurate and timely sharing of information can lead to early prevention of serious incidents.