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School and Workplace Violence

Acts of school and workplace violence, including both active shooter incidents and violent protests, threaten life safety and security, undermine public confidence, and emotionally devastate affected communities. IHEs should use these resources to build campus resilience by adequately preparing for and responding to violent incidents.

The resources in this section provide useful information related to School and Workplace Violence. The resources are organized according to the relevant Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Mission Area within each category:

Active Shooter Incident

Active shooter incidents escalate quickly and evolve rapidly. While many conclude after a few short minutes, others stretch on for hours. IHEs should use these resources to protect their schools, safeguard the lives of their students, faculty, and staff, and facilitate the recovery process following this type of incident.

Preparedness (Prevention, Protection, Mitigation)

  • Prevention: This mission area focuses on the ability to avoid, prevent, or stop an imminent threat.
  • Protection: This mission area focuses on the ability to secure and protect a community against a variety of threats and hazards.
  • Mitigation: This mission area focuses on the ability to reduce the loss of life and property by lessening the impact of a disaster.

Guides and Best Practices:

Enhancing School Safety Using a Threat Assessment Model: An Operational Guide for Preventing Targeted School Violence
U.S. Secret Service has published these resources to aid in identifying students of concern, assessing their risk for engaging in violence or other harmful activities, and identifying intervention strategies to manage that risk.

K-12 School Security: A Guide for Preventing and Protecting against Gun Violence (2nd ed., 2018)
This guide provides preventive and protective measures to address the threat of gun violence in schools.

Active Shooter Preparedness: Run. Hide. Fight Program
This Department of Homeland Security website provides information on the Run. Hide. Fight Program, which provides products, tools, and resources to help all audiences prepare for and respond to an active shooter incident.

Higher Education Institutions - Complex & Underprepared for Active Shooter
This article discusses preparedness gaps in Institutions of Higher Education (IHE) emergency plans in the face of active shooter situations.

Active Shooter Situations: Preparing for an Active Shooter Situation
This resource offers best practices for preparing for an active shooter situation.

Active Shooter Situations: Preventing and Active Shooter
This resource highlights pre-active shooter attack behaviors displayed by past offenders as means of preventing an active shooter situation.

Active Incident Training: Preparing for the Future Threat
This article asserts that preparation must go beyond incident response, tactics, and the focus on active shooters.

20 Active Shooter and Active Killer Prevention Strategies
This resource provides a myriad of active shooter and active killer prevention strategies.

Research and Reports:

Progress Report on the President's Executive Action to Reduce Gun Violence
This resource provides a progress report on Presidential efforts to reduce gun violence.

One Voice on Disaster Preparedness
This article discusses how Run. Hide. Fight. changed the national dialogue on civilian safety.

Trainings:

Active Shooter: What You Can Do Training Course
This course provides guidance to individuals, including managers and employees, so that they can prepare to respond to an active shooter situation.

Options for Consideration Active Shooter Preparedness Video
The Options for Consideration video demonstrates possible actions that individuals can take if confronted with an active shooter scenario. This instructive video reviews the choices of running, hiding, or as an option of last resort, fighting the shooter. The video also shows how to assist authorities once law enforcement arrives.

Active Shooter Emergency Action Plan Video
This video describes the fundamental concepts of developing an Emergency Action Plan (EAP) for an active shooter scenario. This instructive video guides viewers through important considerations of EAP development utilizing the first-hand perspectives of active shooter survivors, first responder personnel, and other subject matter experts who share their unique insight.

Active Shooter Awareness Virtual RoundTable (Webinar)
This online webinar helps critical infrastructure owners and operators to understand the importance of creating an emergency response plan and exercising that plan and training hourly employees on how to respond should they find themselves confronted with the danger of an active shooter incident.

Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) Initiative
This website provides information on the Nationwide SAR initiative, which aims to facilitate the gathering, documenting, processing, analysis, and sharing of suspicious activities.

Response

This mission area focuses on the ability to save lives, protect property and the environment, as well as meet the basic needs of a community during a disaster.

Guides and Best Practices:

Active Shooter How to Respond
This resource helps IHEs prepare for and manage an active shooter incident.

Active Shooter Event Quick Reference Guide
This pamphlet prepares bystanders to run, hide, or fight an active shooter before law enforcement arrives.

Active Shooter Poster - How to Respond When an Active Shooter is in Your Vicinity
This resource helps businesses prepare to respond and manage an active shooter situation.

Active Shooter Pocket Card
This resource helps individuals prepare for and respond to an active shooter incident.

FBI's Active Shooter Resources Webpage
This FBI resource provides operational, behaviorally-based threat assessment and threat management services to help detect and prevent acts of targeted violence, helping academic, mental health, business, community, law enforcement, and government entities recognize and disrupt potential active shooters who may be on a trajectory toward violence.

Fight, Flight, or Lockdown - Teaching Student and Staff to Attack Active Shooters Could Result in Decreased Casualties or Needless Deaths
This article discusses developing trends in active shooter response training.

Active Shooter Situations: Interacting with First Responders
This resource discusses the need to train students and staff how to interact with first responders in the wake of an active shooter attack.

Effective Active Shooter Response Starts with Integrated Campus Solutions
This article discusses best practices to maximize the efficiency and emergency preparedness of campuses with an all-in-one platform.

First Responder Guide for Improving Survivability in Improvised Explosive Device and/or Active Shooter Incidents
This document incorporates military response strategies and civilian best practices into a first responder guide for explosives attacks and active shooter incidents.

Research and Reports:

Order in the Emergency - The Importance Staging Area to Manage Crisis
This article discusses the importance of staging areas throughout the entirety of the crisis-response process.

Trainings:

Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment (EDGE) Virtual Active Shooter Training
Provided by the Department of Homeland Security, Science and Technology Directorate, EDGE is a multiplayer, scalable, online training environment for first responders to train a coordinated response to critical incidents. The first scenario includes an active shooter incident.

Active Shooter Training for Law Enforcement Officers
This website provides information on four training programs offered through the Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers. These programs are designed to provide law enforcement officers with threat awareness, analytical knowledge, tactical skills, and emergency first aid skills for responding to an active shooter situation.

Introduction to Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (TECC) Training Course
Sponsored by George Washington University, this course provides members of the general public (whole community) including school personnel, public works officials, and first responders the information and skills they need to help themselves and others survive an active shooting/active killing incident.

Introduction to Tactical Emergency Casualty Care for First Care Providers Training Course
Sponsored by George Washington University, this course provides the general public, as well as school personnel, the information and skills they need to help themselves and others survive an active shooting/active killing incident with a focus on first care providers.

Tactical Emergency Casualty Care for Law Enforcement Personnel Training Course
Sponsored by George Washington University, this course trains law enforcement personnel about the TECC phases of care, including evacuation techniques. Law enforcement personnel will learn how to prioritize TECC coordinated actions in a high threat active shooter/active killing situation in order to minimize the number of casualties.

Tactical Emergency Casualty Care for Fire and EMS Personnel Training Course
Sponsored by George Washington University, this course trains fire and EMS personnel about the TECC phases of care, including evacuation techniques. Fire and EMS personnel will learn how to prioritize TECC coordinated actions in a high threat active shooter/active killing situation in order to minimize the number of casualties.

Tactical Emergency Casualty Care for First Receivers Training Course
Sponsored by George Washington University, this course teaches medical First Receivers how to care for victims of a high-threat mass casualty shooting/explosion. First Receivers will know the types of injuries that are common in these mass casualty situations and how to prioritize treatment based on TECC guidelines.

Tactical Emergency Casualty Care First Responder Integration Active Shooter/Killing Incidents Rescue Task Force Training Course
Sponsored by George Washington University, this course provides Law Enforcement, Fire and EMS commanders with the training to meet communication needs and challenges associated with an active shooter/active killing incident.

Recovery

This mission area focuses on the ability to assist communities in recovering effectively following a disaster.

Guides and Best Practices:

Active Shooter Situations: After an Active Shooter Incident
This resource offers essential EOP steps to implement after an active shooter incident occurs.

All

Resources that fall into the "All" category contain useful information and guidance that is relevant to all FEMA Mission Areas.

Guides and Best Practices:

Planning and Response to an Active Shooter: An Interagency Security Committee Policy and Best Practices Guide
This resource is designed to be applicable to all buildings and facilities in the United States occupied by Federal employees.

Active Shooter Situations: Exercise
This resource offers best practices for conducting active shooter exercises.

Active Shooter
This webpage describes what actions to take before, during, and after an active shooting event and explains the signs of potential violence.

How to Prepare For and Respond During and After an Active Shooter Incident
This document explains what actions to take in preparation for, response to, and recovery from an active shooter incident.

DHS Active Shooter Preparedness
This website provides useful links to products, tools, and resources to help first responders and law enforcement prepare for and respond to an active shooter incident.

The Immigration Debates: Considerations for Campus Police and Security
This resource discusses the issue of on-campus demonstrations and offers considerations for campus police and security.

Youth Preparedness Council
This website includes information on the Youth Preparedness Council, which conducts ongoing disaster preparedness-based engagement with K-12 representatives and campus leaders.

Research and Reports:

Research Shows Mass Shootings Can be 'Contagious'
This resource discusses a new study regarding the contagious nature of mass shootings.

Aiming at Students: The College Gun Violence Epidemic
This resource analyzes shooting trends at U.S. colleges and reviewed 190 incidents at 142 colleges from 2001 to 2016.

A Study of Active Shooter Incidents in the United States Between 2000 and 2013
This report provides federal, state, and local law enforcement with data and best practices for how to prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recovery from active shooter incidents.

2000 to 2016 Active Shooter Incidents
This document contains a list of active shooter incidents in the United States that have been identified by the FBI from 2000 through the end of 2016.

Trainings:

Emergency Action Planning Trailer
The Active Shooter Emergency Action Planning (EAP) video is a comprehensive active shooter preparedness, response, and recovery resource that utilizes interviews with first responders, survivors of active shooter events, and other subject matter experts to capture best practices and lessons learned. This video combines state-of-threat awareness with state-of-practice solutions that will empower you to build resilience for your community, organization, family, and home.

Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERTT)
This website details training programs provided through the ALERTT Center at Texas State University for active shooter incidents.

Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERTT) Video
This video provides an overview of the ALERTT Training program.

Critical Infrastructure Training
This webpage provides links to various training programs for government and private sector partners offered by the DHS/Office of Infrastructure Protection. These trainings provide the knowledge and skills to implement critical infrastructure security and resilience activities.

Civil Unrest/Mass Protest

Peaceful protests and demonstrations are commonplace across college and university campuses today. Most serve as a peaceful means of political and social engagement; however, IHEs do occasionally witness the violent escalation of these events. IHEs should use these resources to prepare for situations in which civil unrest devolves into criminality or violence and mitigate the subsequent loss of life and property.

Preparedness (Prevention, Protection, Mitigation)

  • Prevention: This mission area focuses on the ability to avoid, prevent, or stop an imminent threat.
  • Protection: This mission area focuses on the ability to secure and protect a community against a variety of threats and hazards.
  • Mitigation: This mission area focuses on the ability to reduce the loss of life and property by lessening the impact of a disaster.

Guides and Best Practices:

Preventing Vehicle Terror Attacks on Campus with Bollards
This resource discusses the benefits of using bollards to help protect special events, building entrances, and more from vehicle attacks and accidents.

Response

This mission area focuses on the ability to save lives, protect property and the environment, as well as meet the basic needs of a community during a disaster.

Guides and Best Practices:

Responding to Campus Protests: A Practitioner Resource
This report offers student affairs professionals with a resource for addressing campus protests.

Recovery

This mission area focuses on the ability to assist communities in recovering effectively following a disaster.

Please see the "All" category for resources that encompass the Preparedness, Response, and Recovery Mission Areas.

All

Resources that fall into the "All" category contain useful information and guidance that is relevant to all FEMA Mission Areas.

Guides and Best Practices:

The Immigration Debates: Considerations for Campus Police and Security
This resource discusses the issue of on-campus demonstrations and offers considerations for campus police and security.

Trainings:

Preparing for and Responding to Student Activism on Campus
This article includes best practices as well as links to other useful resources for how institutions can prepare for and respond to student protests.

Soft Target/Crowded Places

Soft targets include any person or thing that is relatively unprotected or vulnerable to a terrorist attack or an act of violence. Soft targets on college and university campuses today present a unique challenge given the large number of on- and off-campus populations, often resulting in crowded public areas. IHEs should use these resources to prepare for a potential soft target attack against crowded places.

Preparedness (Prevention, Protection, Mitigation)

  • Prevention: This mission area focuses on the ability to avoid, prevent, or stop an imminent threat.
  • Protection: This mission area focuses on the ability to secure and protect a community against a variety of threats and hazards.
  • Mitigation: This mission area focuses on the ability to reduce the loss of life and property by lessening the impact of a disaster.

Trainings:

Vehicle Ramming Attack Mitigation Video
Produced by the Department of Homeland Security, this video provides information to assist with mitigating the evolving threat corresponding to vehicle ramming incidents with insightful technical analysis from public and private sector subject matter experts.

Response

This mission area focuses on the ability to save lives, protect property and the environment, as well as meet the basic needs of a community during a disaster.

Please see the "All" category for resources that encompass the Preparedness, Response, and Recovery Mission Areas.

Recovery

This mission area focuses on the ability to assist communities in recovering effectively following a disaster.

Please see the "All" category for resources that encompass the Preparedness, Response, and Recovery Mission Areas.

All

Resources that fall into the "All" category contain useful information and guidance that is relevant to all FEMA Mission Areas.

Trainings:

Critical Infrastructure Training
This webpage provides provides links to various training programs for government and private sector partners offered by the DHS/Office of Infrastructure Protection. These trainings provide the knowledge and skills to implement critical infrastructure security and resilience activities.

U.S. Secret Service School Safety Research

Over the last 20 years, the U.S. Secret Service National Threat Assessment Center (NTAC) has conducted research, training, and consultation on threat assessment and the prevention of various forms of targeted violence. Following the tragedy at Columbine High School in April 1999, the Secret Service partnered with the Department of Education on two studies related to school safety.

Published in 2002, the Safe School Initiative (SSI) (1.64MB PDF) examined 37 incidents of targeted violence that occurred at elementary and secondary schools to analyze the thinking and behavior of students who commit these attacks. The report, and accompanying guide, served as the impetus for establishing threat assessment programs in schools.

In 2008, the agencies released the Bystander Study (1.36MB PDF), a report that explored a key SSI finding that prior to most attacks, other students knew of the attackers’ plans, yet most did not report it to an adult. The report highlighted the importance of creating safe school climates in which students are empowered to share their concerns. Since then, NTAC has continued to provide and update training to schools, law enforcement, and others on threat assessment and prevention practices.

The tragic events of the February 14, 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and the May 18, 2018 shooting at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas, demonstrated the ongoing need to provide leadership in preventing future school attacks. On July 13, 2018, the NTAC released an operational guide that provides actionable steps that schools can take to develop comprehensive targeted violence prevention plans for conducting threat assessments in schools.  This guide, titled Enhancing School Safety Using a Threat Assessment Model, provides an operational guide for preventing targeted school violence.

All (School and Workplace Violence)

Preparedness (Prevention, Protection, Mitigation)

  • Prevention: This mission area focuses on the ability to avoid, prevent, or stop an imminent threat.
  • Protection: This mission area focuses on the ability to secure and protect a community against a variety of threats and hazards.
  • Mitigation: This mission area focuses on the ability to reduce the loss of life and property by lessening the impact of a disaster.

Guides and Best Practices:

Enhancing School Safety Using a Threat Assessment Model: An Operational Guide for Preventing Targeted School Violence
U.S. Secret Service has published these resources to aid in identifying students of concern, assessing their risk for engaging in violence or other harmful activities, and identifying intervention strategies to manage that risk.

Safe School Facilities Checklist
This checklist combines the school facility assessment measures into one online source for assessing the safety and security of school buildings and grounds.

If You See Something Say Something
This website provides information on how to report suspicious activity and other guidance.

The Handbook for Campus Safety and Security Reporting
This handbook is designed to assist in a step-by-step and readable manner, in understanding and meeting Higher Education Act of 1965 (HEA) requirements.

Safe Awareness for Everyone
This resource connects readers with the Safety Awareness for Everyone (SAFE) program which aims to engage, educate, and empower San Francisco to build safer neighborhoods through crime prevention, education, and public safety services that result in stronger, more vibrant and resilient communities.

Campus Security Guidelines
This resource provides emergency recommendations from the Major Cities Chiefs Police Association.

Pathway to Violence: Warning Signs and What You Can Do
This resource provides common warning signs and instructs readers on what to do in the event of a violent incident.

Enhancing Campus Safety and Security
This website connects users with multiple resources for enhancing campus safety and security.

Emergency Response: Preparing and Protecting Staff in a Crisis
This previously live webcast presents the best tools to prepare staff to respond in a crisis, to reduce casualties, and to save lives.

Colleges Ramp up Stadium Security for Events
This article provides an overview in the change in "bag policies" as part of on-campus stadium security.

Rethinking Training for University Police Officers
This article focuses on the balance that police agencies must strike between meeting best policing practices and the needs of their communities.

Arming University Police Departments Part 2: Best Practices and Lessons Learned
This resource discusses the risks and benefits of arming university police departments.

Research and Reports:

Establishing Appropriate Staffing Levels for Campus Public Safety Departments
This report explores how the Campus Public Safety Departments (CSPDs) staffing levels are determined, what agencies are able to achieve with the number of staff available to them, what challenges they face in this respect and to explore whether there is any potential for developing a means of determining appropriate staffing levels for CSPDs.

The Final Report and Findings of the Safe School Initiative: Implications for the Prevention of School Attacks in the United States
This report, published by the U.S. Secret Service and the Department of Education, summarizes findings from the Safe School Initiative. It specifically details lessons learned for how to prevent acts of school violence.

Tools:

Threat Assessment Tools
This website provides links to the National Behavioral Intervention Team Association (NaBITA) Threat Assessment Tools.

Campus Safety Accreditation
This website connects readers with the CALEA Campus Security Accreditation Program, designed for educational campus security agencies or departments that primarily employ non-sworn security officers.

Trainings:

CPTED Professional Training
The National Institute of Crime Prevention provides crime prevention through environmental design (CPTED) training.

Clery Center News & Events
This resource provides a link to information and guidance to campus safety professionals in implementing Cleary Act requirements.

Beyond Orientation: Building a Prevention Calendar at a College or University
This webinar discusses the best types of prevention education programs for Institutions of Higher Education.

Preparing for Mass Casualty Incidents: A Guide for Schools, Higher Education, and Houses of Worship
Provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Emergency Management Institute, this online course provides leading practices and resources to assist elementary and secondary schools, institutions of higher education, and houses of worship in developing emergency plans for preparing for, responding to, and recovering from mass casualty incidents.

Responder News: Strengthening Campus Security
This website offers useful resources for how to strengthen campus security and emergency planning efforts.

First Observer Plus Program
The First Observer Plus Program, supported by the Transportation Security Administration, provides transportation professionals with the knowledge needed to recognize suspicious activity, guidance for assessing observations, and a method for reporting observations.

National Summits on Preventing Multiple Casualty Violence
Hosted by Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC), these summits bring together experts from a variety of disciplines, including law enforcement, academic education, social sciences, private security, and emergency management to develop cross-cutting prevention strategies and a framework for a prevention toolkit adaptable to individual communities.

Response

This mission area focuses on the ability to save lives, protect property and the environment, as well as meet the basic needs of a community during a disaster.

Guides and Best Practices:

Behavioral Intervention Team
This website provides information and resources regarding Behavior Intervention Teams.

Trainings:

Ready Houston Videos and Resources
This website includes links to videos created by Ready Houston for how to track suspicious behavior as well as how react during an active shooter incident.

Crisis Management for School-Based Incidents--Partnering Rural Law Enforcement, First Responders, and Local School Systems Training Course
Developed by the University of Findlay as a member of the Rural Domestic Preparedness Consortium, this Awareness level course has been developed to educate rural law enforcement personnel as well as school administrators and personnel on the elements that must be in place to effectively respond to a school-based emergency.  

Recovery

This mission area focuses on the ability to assist communities in recovering effectively following a disaster.

Please see the "All" category for resources that encompass the Preparedness, Response, and Recovery Mission Areas.

All

Resources that fall into the "All" category contain useful information and guidance that is relevant to all FEMA Mission Areas.

Guides and Best Practices:

Campus Public Safety
This resource discusses the most common campus public safety issues faced by IHEs.

The Security Strategy That Works for 2 College Campuses
This resource offers a brief summary of the security strategies at University of San Francisco and Virginia Commonwealth University.

What Does Terrorism Look Like on a College Campus?
This article discusses the different definitions of terrorism as well as a wide variety of terrorist motivations and changing tactics that make addressing terrorism a challenge.

Building Your Campus' Security Muscle & Minds
This article instructs readers on how to foster executive, community, and security officer buy-in for programs, as well as make public safety training more effective.

Helping Victims of Mass Violence & Terrorism: Planning, Response, Recovery, and Resources
This website offers a compendium of resources to assist in the preparation of victim assistance plans as a part of state and local emergency response plans.

School Bus Security Flyer
This flyer provides guidelines and other materials to school districts and transportation provides on school bus security.

K-12 School Security Practices Guide
Developed by the Department of Homeland Security this guide provides security best practices for consideration by communities to deter threats, address hazards and risks, and minimize damages from incidents at school.

National Threat Assessment Center (NTAC), Research and Publications
The U.S. Secret Service's NTAC Research and Publications webpage provides information for law enforcement officials, public safety professionals, and others on threat assessment investigations, the prevention of targeted violence, and relevant operational research.

Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Website
This website provides information on HSI, the critical investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security. HSI includes an Education Outreach Program, which is an effort to share information about the dangers within online environments, how to stay safe online; and how to report abuse and suspicious activity.

Research and Reports:

Campus Safety at Oregon Post-Secondary Education Institutions
This analysis, prepared by the University of Oregon Campus Safety Working Group, seeks to improve the safety and resilience of Oregon campuses.

Campus Attacks: Targeted Violence Affecting Institutions of Higher Education
This report discussed the types of school and workplace violence threats that could occur within an academic community.

Tools:

Campus Safety and Security
This website offers common tools needed for campus safety and security analysis.

Averted School Violence (ASV) Near Miss Reporting System
This resource allows Institutions of Higher Education to share reports of averted school violence to improve school safety.

Training

School Transportation Security Outreach Program
The School Transportation Security Outreach Program sponsored by the Transportation Security Agency (TSA) provides guidelines and other materials to school districts and transportation providers on school bus security. To request TSA's school transportation training materials, contact highwaysecurity@dhs.gov.

Crisis Management for School-Based Incidents--Partnering Rural Law Enforcement, First Responders, and Local School Systems Web-Based Course
Sponsored by the Rural Domestic Preparedness Consortium, this awareness-level course has been developed to educate rural emergency responders, in particular law enforcement, as well as school administrators and staff on the elements that must be in place to effectively respond to school-based emergencies. This course provides an opportunity for rural law enforcement and school personnel to develop a partnership with regard to school safety through effective collaborative planning, preparedness, communication, and coordination of resources.

 

Thank you for visiting the Campus Resilience Program Resource Library. The Resource Library is currently available in soft launch mode only. Additional resources are being added on an ongoing basis. We encourage you to submit suggestions for additional resources and provide feedback on the website layout and navigation through this survey.

Last Published Date: July 13, 2018

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