National Center logo
The Weekly Snapshot
Your source for the latest tips, information, and current campus safety resources from the NCCPS.

Protecting Houses of Worship

 

Many colleges and universities have houses of worship on their campuses. While often thought of as safe places, recent tragic events have shown that houses of worship can be targeted for violent acts and affected by disasters and emergencies. There are resources available to assist faith and community leaders, first responders, and emergency managers in decreasing risk and preparing for incidents such as active shooter situations, fires, tornados, floods, hurricanes, earthquakes and arson. 

 

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Center of Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships worked with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to launch a new web page to support local efforts across the nation to protect houses of worship and their congregants as they gather to observe their traditions. According to David Myers, Director of the Center for Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships, "over the past several years, faith leaders representing various traditions have been partnering with local first responders and emergency managers to increase the safety of their congregants by developing emergency operations plans." The protecting houses of worship web page complements these partnerships by providing access to trainings and webinars, information to help build emergency operations plans, and guidance that provides specific and actionable steps faith leaders and local first responders can take. 

 

If you do not find what you are looking for on the protecting houses of worship web page, or if you have questions about the information contained within the various links, you may contact partnerships@fema.dhs.gov. To learn more about the DHS Center for Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships, one of thirteen federal centers associated with the White House Office of Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships, you may visit their website.

Training First Responders to Know the Signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder

 

This year we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The official anniversary, July 26, 2015, has just passed and it reminds us that all first responders - campus police, campus security, EMS, hospital personnel, etc. - need to be appropriately trained in how to work with those with disabilities.

 

Physical disabilities are, in many ways, the easiest to address simply because they are clearly identifiable. Other disabilities, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), continue to rise sharply and are not distinguishable by any physical feature. According to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network, 1 in 68 children were identified with ASD. That's approximately 120% higher than estimates from 2000-2002. In addition, ASD is five times more common in boys than in girls.

 

First responders and law enforcement personnel are aware how stressful and chaotic emergency situations can be for everyone. These situations can be intensified for someone with ASD and understanding how to interact with individuals with ASD is critical to providing the best care possible for everyone involved.

 

The Autism Society has created fact sheets for law enforcement and other first responders (PDF) and paramedics and emergency room staff (PDF) with vital information about common behaviors individuals with ASD may exhibit or how they may respond in certain situations. Some helpful hints for law enforcement include:

  • Speak slowly and use simple language
  • Use concrete terms
  • Repeat simple questions
  • Allow time for responses
  • Do not attempt to physically block self-stimulating behavior
  • Remember that each individual with autism is unique and may act differently than others

In addition, training for law enforcement and other first responders is available from several sources:

For more information on ASD, please visit the CDC, Autism Society or Autism Speaks.

Click image to access our online calendar of events.
Professional Development Opportunities

 

Title: You Have Options Program Introductory Session

Host: You Have Options Program (YHOP)

Dates: August 17-19, 2015 (registration deadline Aug. 12)

Location: Ashland, OR

Fee: Registration Fee

Information and Registration

 

Title: Responding to Suicide Clusters on College Campuses - Two Part Series

Host: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Jed Foundation

Date: August 20, 2015 at 1:30 PM Eastern

Location: Online

Fee: Free

Information and Registration

 

Title: 2015 National Training Institute

Host: National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC)

Dates: September 09-11, 2015

Location: Anaheim, CA

Fee: Registration Fee

Information and Registration 

This project was supported by Grant No. 2013-MU-BX-K011 awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. The Bureau of Justice Assistance is a component of the Office of Justice Programs, which also includes the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the Office for Victims of Crime, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking. Points of view or opinions in this document are those of author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the US Department of Justice.
Margolis Healy logo