Campus Safety Letter from Dr. Chong 01-25-19

msandberg
Fri, 01/25/2019 - 10:32am

Dear Student,

I’m emailing you to follow up on the event that occurred on the Santa Rosa campus on Thursday, Jan. 17. While it is a great relief that the report of a gun on campus was false, it is no excuse to be complacent.

I would first like to commend our police department on their immediate response to this report. We are fortunate to have such dedicated and courageous officers on hand to protect our community in the event of an emergency.

However, this incident brought to light several areas of our emergency response that could use improvement, particularly with regards to prevention and communication. In the event that a real situation arises, we must be both diligent and prepared.

As such, I propose the following multi-pronged action plan to improving our emergency prevention and response practices.

Door locks

As previously reported, the district commissioned a security study, which provided final recommendations in November 2018. As a result of these recommendations and in response to the requests of faculty, staff, administrators and students, the district has committed to the following changes:

  • Electronic locks will be installed on exterior doors that will allow district police to remotely lock-down if needed.
  • Manual locks will be installed on interior doors, allowing individuals to lock doors from the inside.
  • Installations will begin with Emeritus and will continue until all buildings across all SRJC campuses are upgraded.
  • The only exception will be buildings that are considered temporary, which will still receive manual locks, but no electronic locks.
  • Any new buildings or renovations will include these upgraded locking systems.

As you can imagine, this project is a massive undertaking and will require some time to be completed. However, I have tasked my leadership team to make this a priority and plan to see manual locks installed in Emeritus by April 30, with other buildings to follow.   

SRJC Alerts

This event also revealed that some individuals are still not receiving SRJC Alerts. Students’ emails are automatically enrolled for emergency notifications, but must opt-in for text notifications when they register at the college. If you did not receive these alerts on Jan. 17, please log into your student portal to ensure your contact information is up-to-date and to opt-in.

Please see the short instructional video on how to do so, attached to this email. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8CrX-YAL-8

We will also implement the newly acquired Informacast system, which is able to broadcast messages across the district through the phone systems. This will allow us to provide audible alerts to everyone on campus in the event of an emergency, in addition to sending text and email alerts.

Active shooter trainings and drills

All employees and students should have the opportunity to learn what to do in the event of an active shooter. The SRJC District Police regularly offer scheduled active shooter trainings, including the following opportunities:

  • Wednesday, Feb. 6, 11:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., location TBD

More details will follow so please watch your email and plan to attend if you are able.

If you have additional questions, please contact the Office of Student Life at (707) 527-4424 or srjcstudentlife@santarosa.edu.

Safety subcommittee

Finally, in following the recommendations of the President’s Consultation Council (PCC), I have approved the formation of a subcommittee of the District Health & Safety Committee (DSHC) to review the college’s policies, procedures and practices related to emergency response and safety. This subcommittee will be comprised of members from each constituent group, including students.

I hope that by bringing some fresh eyes to this matter, we can find additional areas of improvement as well as positive solutions that will better prepare us in the event of a future emergency.

As always, thank you for your ongoing support as we continuously strive to improve. I know we are certainly not perfect, but with your help, I believe we can always get better.

Sincerely,

Dr. Frank Chong
President/Superintendent
Santa Rosa Junior College