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A safety newsletter for the Illinois Wesleyan campus community

September, 2016

A safety newsletter for Illinois Wesleyan faculty, staff and students
Safety Pin

In addition to your academic success, your health and safety are among our top priorities as a campus. Although we are generally perceived as a safe campus, we always want you to be aware of reasonable safety precautions and preventative measures to ensure your personal safety and that of your property. This newsletter is intended to provide you with an overview of safety information at Illinois Wesleyan University.  We hope you take a few minutes to read this resource to keep yourself informed about our emergency preparedness and resources.  As always, if you see anything that creates a campus safety concern, please contact Security (309-556-1111) or in situations of imminent danger 911, followed by a call to Campus Security. 


Campus Security is available 24/7, 365 days a year to support you if you encounter any safety or security concern. Security offers jumper cables if you have a dead car battery, walking safe escorts, Titan Transport safe ride program, and vehicle registration as campus safety measures. Please program the Security phone number in your phone (309-556-1111) in case you are ever in need of assistance.

IWU Alert Messages

IWU Alert is the campus emergency notification system via phone, text, and email. Please go to MyIWU to make sure you have your most up-to-date cell phone number listed with your preference of receiving notification via text, voice, email or all methods. Our most common alerts are weather-related (tornado, extreme cold, etc). We will test our alert system every semester in September and February. Please check your IWU Alert phone number before the test.

Bloomington Resources

The City of Bloomington has several alert mechanisms regarding safety. At 10:00 a.m. on the first Tuesday of every month, Bloomington tests their emergency siren/tornado warning siren. There is likely no emergency, but they are consistent with this testing period. The City of Bloomington also provides email and text alerts for snow alerts and other types of city road issues. You can sign up for those alerts online.

Bloomington Police are strong partners in crime prevention on campus. They will provide support to IWU staff regarding any campus crime and are particularly vigilant regarding alcohol and other drugs. Alcohol and other drug ordinance violations in the community will result in campus adjudication as well.

Weather Situations

In recent years, our most frequent emergency alerts are weather-related. In the event of extreme weather like tornados, we encourage students to watch the weather and make smart decisions about your personal safety. We will notify you via IWU Alert of potential weather emergencies, but always encourage you to be mindful of your surroundings, including the weather.

Over the last two years, we experienced severe cold and ice during the winter. As local K-12 schools began announcing closures, IWU students often asked if we were closing due to the extreme weather. As a residential University, we are unlikely to close due to snow, ice or cold. If we decide to close, we will typically make that decision the morning of the closure, ideally no later than 6:30 a.m. You should not expect to know about weather closures the day before, as many factors change throughout the evening. You will receive an IWU Alert if we decide to close or delay the start of the work/class day. So, please always plan for classes and complete all work as if class will always be held. Regardless of whether the University is closed for class or business due to weather, dining services will be available to provide meals to residential students; however, other services, like Titan Transport or Health Services, may not be available.

Additionally, you are reminded that you are responsible for assessing your personal safety and making adult decisions about your safety. If you are out of town/at home and weather appears to be treacherous, then you should make your own decision about returning to campus. Remember to notify your professors of class absences. We assure you that faculty will be accommodating with any reasonable request and timely notification.

Sexual Misconduct Reporting

As a campus community, we are committed to providing an educational and social experience free of sexual violence. There are many sexual assault educational opportunities throughout the year and we would highly encourage you to participate in our Step Up Bystander Education program. Bystander Education is the educational commitment of our community to stand up for one another and help prevent crime or crisis. Your role as a member of this community is critical in establishing the norm that safety is a priority and sexual assault and harassment will not be endorsed, even passively.

Additionally, please remember that reporting incidents is critical to our ability to address this campus safety concern. If you’re experiencing yourself or you’ve been talking with a friend who has experienced or is experiencing sexual or relationship abuse, please contact Darcy L. Greder (Student Affairs – 309-556-3111), Frank Boyd (Title IX Coordinator – 309-556-3255) or Bloomington Police dispatch (309-820-8888) to discuss options and resources and/or to make a formal report. All reports are taken seriously. Students found responsible for sexual assault may face sanctions including separation or expulsion.

You may also contact any of our confidential support offices – Counseling and Consultation Services, Health Services or the Chaplain – to get confidential support and guidance. You may also choose to contact Stepping Stones, our local rape crisis center, for confidential off-campus support (309-662-0461). If you share that you’ve been assaulted, all other faculty and staff are mandatory reporters which means they must report to either Dr. Boyd or Dean Greder. However, this does not change your ability to remain active in decisions about any next steps. Additional resources can be found at

Active Shooter Protocol

Unfortunately, educational institutions have experienced an increase of campus violence over the last twenty years, which raises concerns for all of us. If we have an active shooter on campus, Bloomington Police Department will coordinate the crisis response.
Our campus protocol is as follows:

  1. If an active shooter is present, you will be notified by IWUAlert message of the issue and area of concern. In accordance with the guidance in the video below from Homeland Security, you should either evacuate (if that can be done safely) or secure your location. 
  2. Bloomington Police will be responsible for all instructions once they arrive on the scene. Any additional updates will be provided via IWUAlert and email.
  3. An IWUAlert will notify the campus community when the crisis is under control. A notice will also be posted on our home page.

We would also like to take this opportunity to share a video regarding safety responses recommended by Homeland Security to an active shooter. This video was produced by Ohio State University and helps students understand response strategies. Furthermore, if you are interested, you may choose to participate in an online educational program offered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency regarding responding to an active shooter. The course in an interactive online course titled “Active Shooter: What You Can Do.”

Campus Drug Abuse

Illegal drug use, including illegal use of prescription drugs, impacts your health and well-being by damaging your brain, other vital organs, and certainly impacts your academic motivation and future success. Addiction often creates life-long challenges regarding health, family, and employment, just to name a few. Additionally, drug use may bring a criminal element to campus that threatens our entire community. We are concerned about you as individuals and for our campus community.

The University will continue to cooperate with police investigations surrounding any incidents where drugs are involved. We are grateful to our local law enforcement for their commitment to ridding our community of illegal drug use and share in their resolve to create a positive drug-free campus community.

If you have concerns about a friend who may be abusing drugs or other substances, please don’t hesitate to contact the Dean of Students office (309-556-3111) or Counseling and Consultation Services (309-556-3052). Students struggling with drug abuse will receive assistance in identifying resources to aid in their recovery.

Secure Your Space and Belongings

Make sure to always carry your keys, and protect yourself and your belongings by keeping your door locked when you leave the room or are sleeping. If you temporarily misplace or permanently lose your keys, contact hall staff immediately so that replacements can be issued in the short term or cores changed permanently. 

Please also remember to always secure your belongings. The Shirk Center and the CNS Dance Studio are frequently targeted by thieves because students, faculty and staff leave their backpacks, wallets, phones, iPods and other personal belongings unattended while exercising or in class. In both areas, you can provide your own lock to secure your belongings in lockers nearby. Locks are available at Shirk for use in the Shirk Center locker rooms.  

Restricted Areas of Campus

Please use common sense and follow all instructions about campus physical spaces that are “off limits.” These may be locked buildings, rooftops, or other areas where construction work is occurring. These closures and limits exist for your safety and the safety of others. Students who enter closed, locked or restricted areas will meet with the Dean of Students office for conduct violations and/or may be arrested for trespassing by Bloomington Police. Please use good judgment about your safety.

We look forward to another healthy, safe, and productive year together. Please make good choices and watch out for each other.

The IWU Safety Pin is an electronic newsletter from Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students Karla Carney-Hall, chair of the Emergency Response Team.
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