Last month the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators (IACLEA) held their annual conference and exposition in Las Vegas, Nevada. Although several topics were discussed during the event, there were a few common themes we noticed this year: mental health awareness is top of mind with campus safety officials, for example. There was also discussion about preventing foreseeable events, and quickly getting new hires from law enforcement up to speed with the regulations that govern college security.
Circadian Risk was on hand for this year’s conference. Here are some of our thoughts on IACLEA 2022.
An emphasis on mental health
It was refreshing to see so much discussion of mental health awareness at this year’s event - not just on responding to incidents where people are experiencing a mental health crisis, but the way mental health impacts campus safety across the board. And, in a situation where you are typically dealing with young adults experiencing their first issues away from their home support network, it increases the need for heightened mental health awareness.
This year’s conference featured several panels on mental health, including presentations on the mental health of officers, and mental health in the broader college community. This is an excellent topic for the organization to focus on; if officers are well-trained in mental health issues, they won’t unknowingly escalate an incident. They also can’t do their jobs well if they’re not taking care of their own mental health. Too often, the issues that officers deal with on a regular basis (violence, death, crime victims, etc) are more often than not, internalized and not openly dealt with.
Preventing the preventable
Wednesday’s keynote was a talk about updates to the Clery Act by Frank Spano of Allied Universal and James Moore, senior advisor for Clery Act Compliance & Campus Safety Operations for the U.S. Department of Education. The conversation turned towards preventing foreseeable issues.
“Insurance companies are tired of paying billion dollar settlements out of your public safety disasters,” said Moore. “Assessments should not become politicized.”
Moore got right to the heart of what we at Circadian Risk believe: that officials need to accept when the data tells them that certain incidents are foreseeable and must be prepared for. If it’s happening on another campus, he pointed out, it can happen on yours. By not being realistic in security assessments, safety officials create liabilities.
Moore pointed out that although everyone in the audience might say they have a policy for a certain scenario — a mass shooting for example — but they don’t know if they can handle the situation unless they test their policies and procedures.
A closer look at the Clery Act
There were also several panels about The Clery Act. The Clery Act, signed into law in 1990, requires all colleges and universities that participate in federal financial aid programs to keep and disclose information about crime on and near their campuses. It also poses a challenge for new campus safety officers who have previously been police officers, because law enforcement isn’t governed by laws like the Clery Act and Title IX.
Getting up to speed is often a challenge in itself. Campus safety organizations have created mentoring programs to help teach new officers and campus safety directors learn about the federal requirements of the law.
This is something Circadian Risk can help with. We can use our platform to create an assessment based on the requirements of Title IX and Clery. Not only will this help new officers with assessments, but it can also be used as a teaching tool to help new officers and directors learn the law.
Need help with Clery Act and Title IX assessments? Contact us for a demo.