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PD-1-B

WVU-PD-1-B Emergency Notifications (WVU Alerts), Timely Warnings (Campus Warnings), and WVU Community Notices

Responsible Unit: University Police
Effective: December 21, 2020
Revision History: None
Review Date: January 2026

SECTION 1: PURPOSE & SCOPE

1.1 Emergency Notifications (WVU Alerts), Timely Warnings (Campus Warnings), and WVU Community Notices are designed to help the University keep members of the University community informed about threats to their safety and health in a manner that allows for steps to be taken in order to protect against those threats. Thus, the University will issue Emergency Notifications (WVU Alerts), Timely Warnings (Campus Warnings), and WVU Community Notices consistent with this Policy.

1.2 As set forth in this Policy, each notification discussed in this Policy will be sent for its intended purpose and will include the information set forth below.


SECTION 2: DEFINITONS

2.1 Timely Warnings (Campus Warnings) – a notification of a Clery Reportable Crime that occurred on the University’s Clery Geography, and that is considered by the University to represent a serious or continuing threat to students and employees. This notification will be provided in accordance with Section 3 and is required by law.

2.2 Emergency Notification – a notification that there is a significant emergency or dangerous situation occurring on campus that involves an immediate threat to the health or safety of students or employees. This notification will be provided in accordance with Section 4 and is required by law.

2.3 WVU Community Bulletin – a notification that is neither a WVU Crime Alert - Timely Warning nor an Emergency Notification and is not required by law but is being sent when the University determines that information should be provided to the campus community in order to enhance safety.

2.4 Clery Reportable Crime - Crimes required by the Clery Act to be reported annually to the University community, including: criminal homicide (murder and negligent/non-negligent manslaughter); sex offenses (rape, fondling, statutory rape, and incest); robbery; aggravated assault; burglary; motor vehicle theft; arson; hate crimes (including larceny-theft, simple assault, intimidation, or destruction/damage/vandalism of property that are motivated by bias); dating violence; domestic violence; stalking; and arrests and referrals for disciplinary action for any of the following: (a) liquor law violations, (b) drug law violations, and (c) carrying or possessing illegal weapons.

2.5 Clery Geography – The campus geographic areas, as defined by the Clery Act, for which Clery-Reportable Crimes are required to be reported. The geographic categories include:

2.6 Campus Security Authority (CSA) – Individuals at the University who because of their functional role have an obligation to notify the University about allegations of Clery Reportable Crimes that are reported to or witnessed by the CSA to the University.


SECTION 3: TIMELY WARNINGS

3.1 Circumstances for a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) . A Timely Warning (Campus Warning) will be issued when (1) a Clery Reportable Crime occurs on Clery Geography; (2) the Clery Reportable Crime is reported to a Campus Security Authority or local police; (3) the Clery Reportable Crime is considered to represent a serious or continuing threat to the University students or employees; and (4) the Timely Warning (Campus Warning) will aid in the timely prevention of similar acts.

3.2 Factors for a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) . In determining whether to issue a Timely Warning (Campus Warning), the following factors will be considered:

3.3 Responsibility for a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) . The University Police Chief will be responsible for issuing a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) in consultation with the appropriate personnel involved in Clery compliance. University Relations will be responsible for assisting in the delivery of the Timely Warning (Campus Warning) to members of the University Community. For these reasons, CSA’s and local law enforcement should report Clery Crimes to UPD immediately upon receipt of such a report.

3.4 Dissemination of a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) . Timely Warnings (Campus Warnings) will be disseminated in a manner reasonably likely to reach the members of the University Community and allow for them to take appropriate steps to protect themselves. Specifically, Timely Warnings (Campus Warnings) will be distributed in the following ways:

3.5 Content of a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) . The following information is typically included in a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) if available:


SECTION 4: EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS (WVU ALERTS)

4.1 Upon confirmation of a significant emergency or dangerous situation occurring on campus that involves an immediate threat to the health or safety of students or employees, the University will, without delay, and taking into account the safety of the community, determine the content of an Emergency Notification (WVU Alert) and initiate its emergency notification procedures, unless issuing a notification will, in the professional judgement of the first responders, compromise efforts to assist a victim or to contain, respond to or otherwise mitigate the emergency. “Immediate threat” as used here includes an imminent or impending threat:

4.2 If an Emergency Notification (WVU Alert) is necessary, the University will follow the steps outlined in the WVU Crisis Communications Plan, which can be found here and includes the process for disseminating emergency information to the larger community: https://universityrelations.wvu.edu/culture/resources-for-communicators/crisis-communications-plan/plan

4.3 The appropriate segment or segments of the University community will receive a notification and that will be determined by the information available at the time.

4.4 The content of an Emergency Notification (WVU Alert) will include the nature of the emergency or dangerous situation; the particular location or individuals affected by the emergency or dangerous situations; and any other critical information necessary in order to allow members of the University community to take preventive measures.

4.5 The University will, without delay, and taking into account the safety of the community, determine the content of the notification and initiate the notification system, unless issuing a notification will, in the professional judgment of responsible authorities, compromise efforts to assist a victim or to contain, respond to, or otherwise mitigate the emergency.

4.6 The procedures to test Emergency Notifications (WVU Alerts), as well as the emergency response and evacuation procedures, will occur on at least an annual basis and may be announced or unannounced. For each test, there will be documentation of a description of the exercise, the date, time, and whether it was announced or unannounced.

4.7 The University will publicize its emergency response and evacuation procedures in conjunction with at least one test per calendar year.


SECTION 5: WVU COMMUNITY NOTICES

5.1 In other instances, where neither a Timely Warning (Campus Warning) nor an Emergency Notification (WVU Alert) may be required, the University may issue a WVU Community Notices if it determines that information should be provided to the campus community in order to enhance safety.

5.2 WVU Community Notices will be issued in a manner consistent with its objective and may utilize the same or different manners for which both Timely Warnings (Campus Warnings) and Emergency Notifications (WVU Alerts) are sent. Similarly, the content for WVU Community Notices will depend on the situation presented and should be flexible in order to achieve the purpose of providing notice of the ongoing situation to members of the University Community.


SECTION 6: SUPERSEDING PROVISIONS

6.1 This Policy supersedes and replaces any other WVU policy or procedure which relates to the subject matter contained within this Rule.

Office of the Vice President for Strategic Initiatives