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Safety and Security at SUNY Plattsburgh

Students talking in the Nina Winkel GallerySUNY Plattsburgh Environment

SUNY Plattsburgh, a community of about 2,700 residential students with another 3,300 students who reside off campus and 1170 faculty and staff, is located within the boundaries of Plattsburgh, New York. The city of Plattsburgh, including the college, has a population of nearly 22,500 people. As part of the larger community, SUNY Plattsburgh shares several common societal interests and concerns, including a major national problem: crime.

The safety and well being of students, faculty, staff and visitors to the college is a high priority at Plattsburgh. A safe and secure environment can be achieved only through the cooperation of all members of the campus community. This publication is a part of an effort to ensure that this endeavor is both collaborative and effective. We hope that you read it carefully, retain it as an informational resource, and keep in mind that its purpose is to help foster a safe environment for you and others.

University Police Department

New York State University Police Officers are appointed by the State University of New York and as defined by section 355 subdivision 2, par. 1 of the New York State Education Law and section 1.20 subdivision 34-S of the New York State Criminal Procedure Law.

They have the authority to make arrests, conduct criminal investigations, execute both search and arrest warrants, issue uniform traffic tickets, appearance tickets, and issue summonses for parking as well as enforce any general, special or local law, ordinance, rule, regulation, judgment or order.

The University Police at SUNY Plattsburgh is the law enforcement agency for the campus. It consists of a staff of well-trained and highly motivated individuals who are committed to creating and sustaining a safe environment in which to live, work and learn. Departmental services are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Professional "dispatchers" Staff the University Police front desk and answer the phone lines 24/7.

Fifteen sworn police personnel are vested with full law enforcement responsibilities identical to the local police in your community. We encourage you to promptly and accurately report all crimes to the University Police Department. Faculty and staff are informed through the Workplace Violence Policy at: http://www.plattsburgh.edu/offices/admin/hr/violenceprevention/policies.php to report all crimes and emergencies to the University Police Department.

Officers are trained at local police academies. They receive specialized training and in-service training in first aid, defensive tactics, legal updates and other law enforcement topics.

With certain exceptions, the law enforcement authority of the College's Police Department is limited to the campus and adjoining roadways.

University Police officers have statewide jurisdiction, as do all other police officers within New York State. Their primary jurisdiction is State University owned property and roadways that cross or abut the campus. University Police officers at Plattsburgh do carry firearms.

The University Police Department prepares this report to comply with federal law, the CLERY Act. This report is prepared in cooperation with the local law enforcement agencies surrounding our main campus and alternate sites, the campus Judicial Affairs Office and the Division of Student Affairs.

Campus crime, arrests and referral statistics include those reported to University Police, reported to designated campus officials listed within the Emergencies and Crimes section of this report as a "Campus Security Authority" and reported to local law enforcement agencies. Individuals reporting crimes at the Center for Student Health and Psychological Services are informed that they may voluntarily report the crime to University Police or if they wish their identity to remain confidential they may report their crime to the Dean of Students Office or a "Campus Security Authority".

The Dean of Students Office collects and forwards all confidential/anonymous crime statistics to University Police for inclusion in this report.

Each year, an e-mail notification is made to all students, faculty and staff that provide the web site to access this report. In addition, printed copies of the notification are distributed to campus departments where employees do not have individual access to the campus e-mail. The notification is also included in the College Catalog, prospective and accepted student information materials and in the on-line employment application.

Emergencies and Crimes

Emergency calls to report a crime or serious incidents on campus can be made by calling 564-2022, or dialing 911. The "Blue Light" telephones, located throughout the campus, and emergency phones in the vestibules of the academic buildings are all linked to the campus communications system. When a call is made from a "Blue Light" phone, police or emergency personnel are dispatched immediately to the location where the call originated.

Reports of crime incidents can be made in person at the University Police headquarters, which is located at the north end of the Health Center building.

Criminal offenses are investigated by the University Police Department for future prosecution. Further, it is the policy of SUNY Plattsburgh and the University Police Department to immediately respond to all emergencies, evacuate as necessary, and to alert the campus community of certain crimes and safety/security issues occurring on campus, or in the immediate vicinity of the campus. The campus community is notified of situations that pose a threat to the safety and well-being of our community through varied methods of communication, including: SUNY NY Alert (sign up and learn more about SUNY NY Alert through my.plattsburgh.edu), the campus newspaper at http://www.cardinalpointsonline.com, the radio station WQKE, the campus television network  PSTV, campus alert posters, campus e-mail, campus voice-mail, campus homepage (www.plattsburgh.edu), emergency Web page (www.plattsburgh.edu/emergency), as well as local and regional news media. These "timely warning notices" are often entitled "Crime Alert or Safety Alert".

These emergency notification methods, including SUNY NY Alert and emergency evacuation procedures are tested on an annual basis. Building evacuation procedures consist of mandated fire drills in all campus buildings.

During an actual emergency detailed instruction will be provided to the campus community through SUNY NY Alert and other appropriate communication methods. Emergency Management publicizes the SUNY NY Alert System and conducts enrollment drives on an annual basis.

Additionally, according to federal law, CLERY Act, this institution is required to report statistics concerning the occurrence of certain criminal offenses reported to any official of the institution who is defined as a "Campus Security Authority". Those officials which may be reported to at SUNY Plattsburgh, for the purposes of "timely warning" reports and the annual criminal statistical disclosures include the following individuals:

  • Dean of Students: (518) 564-3282
  • Vice President for Student Affairs: (518) 564-2280
  • Judicial Coordinator: (518) 564-3282
  • Director of Residence Life: (518) 564-3824
  • Director of Housing: (518) 564-3824
  • Director of the Angell College Center: (518) 564-4321
  • Director of Student Activities: (518) 564-4830
  • Director of Athletics: (518) 564-3140
  • All Sport Team Coaches
  • All Student Group Advisors
  • All Residence Hall Directors

Please note that these offices allow victims and witnesses to report crime on a voluntary, confidential basis. Counselors and health care providers at the Center for Student Health and Psychological Services, who are informed by persons they are counseling or giving care to, may also inform that person that crimes can be reported to Dean of Students Office on a voluntary, confidential basis or may request that the counselor or health care provider make the report to that office on their behalf. Reports of this nature are filed with University Police for informational and statistical purposes only. University Police does not conduct investigations into such reports.

In addition to confidential crime reporting procedures, students who wish to identify a confidential contact for police to utilize in the event they are reported missing may do so within their web account at my.plattsburgh.edu. On the home page of their account located in the bottom right hand corner is a link, "View/Update Emergency Contact". Once the link is followed there is a field labeled "relationship", the special emergency contact type "Missing Person Contact" is located in the drop down box within that field. Students may enter the contact information of a confidential contact in the event that they are reported missing. If a student is reported missing to University Police an attempt will be made to locate the student to determine his or her state of health and well being. If at any point during the investigation information arises that indicates a missing person crime report should be filed the information will be shared with all appropriate law enforcement agencies, including the Plattsburgh City Police Department. Appropriate investigative measures will be coordinated with the involved law enforcement agencies. If the student listed a missing person contact, University Police will contact the listed individual. Parents may be notified as part of the investigative process. If the student reported missing is an off campus student the appropriate law enforcement agency will be contacted. Investigative and crime reporting procedures will be coordinated by that agency or the agency in the jurisdiction where the student was last reported. University Police will assist as appropriate. If the student listed a missing person confidential contact in Banner, University Police will contact the listed individual.

Note: The New York State Sex Offenders Registry can be accessed by calling 1 (800) 262-3257 or at http://criminaljustice.state.ny.us/nsor/.

Furthermore, if registered sex offenders are employed at the University or enrolled as a student at the University information regarding these sex offenders will be made available to the public, according to the sex offender registry guidelines. The public should contact a University Police supervisor at (518) 564-2022 or in person at the University Police Department located in the Health Center Building to request sex offender information.

Escort Service

University Police provides a year-round, around-the-clock on-campus escort service. This service, available to any student, employee or visitor to the campus, is available by calling the University Police Department at 564-2022. Any ordinary telephone or one of the emergency "Blue Light" phones may be used to request an escort.

University Police provides 24-hour-per-day vehicle and foot patrol protection to campus properties. They also patrol on bicycle, weather permitting. Except for residence halls, most campus facilities are open to the public during the day and evening hours when classes are in session. Persons from the greater Plattsburgh community routinely attend cultural and recreational events on campus, but their access is limited only to areas where public events are held.

Residence Hall Security

At night, and during periods when the campus is officially closed, university buildings are locked. Only faculty, staff and some students with proper identification and authority can be admitted. Campus employees with assigned offices are issued keys, and they are responsible for reporting missing and stolen keys to University Police. Residence halls are locked 24 hours a day everyday when school is in session. Locked hours are adjusted during summer orientation and for special programs/events. Security and access to all twelve campus residence halls are controlled by a computerized keyless entry system which utilizes proximity readers at exterior doors. This system, monitored at University Police HQ gives an instantaneous electronic alarm if a residence hall door is ajar or kept open too long.

Personnel are dispatched to check and secure the alarm zone. Each residence hall also has combination lock hardware on each of the student's rooms. In addition, a viewer is installed in each resident entry door, thereby augmenting residential safety and security.

Other security considerations used in the maintenance of campus facilities include recurring inspection of campus lighting and other personal safety conditions by University Police staff. Problems are reported directly for necessary corrective action to the college's Maintenance and Operations Department.

Crime incident information is forwarded to the New York State Police Information Network (NYSPIN) for state and national distribution. Crime reports and related statistical information are also entered in the Campus Crime Information System for statistical purposes. The University Police Department has a close working relationship with the Plattsburgh Police Department, the Clinton County Sheriff's Department and the New York State Police. University Police patrol officers have radio communications with other local law enforcement and emergency services.

In addition, University Police has a Memorandum of Understanding with the Plattsburgh City Police Department regarding the sharing of criminal information and coordination of law enforcement efforts between the College and the City. It is stipulated in the MOU that information regarding violent crimes and reports of missing students will be shared between departments. The police departments will carry out appropriate investigative procedures; will determine the most efficient manner of continuing the investigation and shall provide mutual assistance when requested.

Photo of students in a dorm roomResidence Life

The Residence Life staff is composed of individuals whose duties complement those of the University Police Department. Each residence hall has a director whose training includes counseling, residence hall management and student services.

Directors live in the residence halls and are assisted by a staff of student resident assistants (RAs). Resident Assistants are recruited following a very selective review process and then are required to undergo a rigorous training program designed to prepare them for their role.

SUNY Plattsburgh offers many opportunities for campus-wide programming at various times throughout the year that is designed to inform students and employees about campus security procedures and practices. Programs include lecture series, resident hall meetings, University police/Counseling/Health Services presentations, and classroom discussions.

The Maintenance and Operations staff maintains buildings and grounds with a concern for safety and security. Its personnel inspect campus facilities and make repairs on safety or security hazards such as broken windows, doors, and lighting fixtures, or general maintenance. Any safety or security hazard should be reported to the University police Department at (518) 564-2022.

Personal Responsibilities

The cooperation and involvement of all members of the campus community is essential to a successful campus safety program. All persons must assume responsibility for their own personal safety and the security of their personal belongings by taking common sense precautions. Residence hall rooms should be locked at night or when unoccupied. Students, faculty and staff should report suspicious persons, questionable circumstances, activities or unusual incidents they may observe to University Police.

Student orientation programs operate during the summer to provide information on a wide variety of topics to prospective students, parents and residence hall staff. Part of orientation consists of presentations on crime prevention and personal safety.

Crime prevention tips in campus news publications, and in other college publications as well as flyers/posters distributed throughout the residence halls and department offices contribute to the educational process on safety and security. The University Police staff presents a variety of crime related topics to organized campus groups: rape awareness, Operation I.D. (Property Identification), Alcohol and Drug Law, DWI/Intoxication Goggle demonstrations and self defense are a few among them.

Sunrise over Lake Champlain and downtown PlattsburghOff-Campus Crime

When criminal incidents occur which have a nexus to the safety of our campus community and thereby potentially impede the educational mission of the campus, judicial charges may be filed.

Also, when recognized student groups, organizations or athletic teams are involved in criminal incidents, which occur off campus judicial charges may be filed.

Individuals are urged and encouraged to report all such incidents to the appropriate law enforcement authorities (i.e. Plattsburgh City Police, New York State Police or the Clinton County Sheriffs Department.

Drug and Alcohol Policies

The privilege of using alcoholic beverages is governed by state law and college policy as detailed in Section 3 of the Student Conduct Manual.

Irresponsible and/or illegal use of alcoholic beverages and/or the resulting inappropriate behavior is strictly prohibited.

The State University of New York requires each campus to maintain regulations forbidding the use of narcotic and dangerous drugs.

SUNY Plattsburgh complies by including its policy in Section 8 of the Student Conduct Manual.

Further, the college's policy on alcohol and dangerous drug use/abuse is described in the Faculty/Staff Handbook and the Human Resource Services Department Web page.

The college provides ongoing drug and alcohol awareness programs. Dissemination of pertinent information will continue to occur for all members of the campus community.

Confidential counseling and referral for treatment for alcohol and drug maladies is available to students and employees through Counseling Services and the Employee Assistance Program.

Weapons on Campus

Firearms and dangerous weapons of any type are not permitted on campus. Use, possession, or sale of firearms or other dangerous weapons by anyone is strictly forbidden and is a violation of state and federal law as well as a violation of Section 13 of the Student Code of Conduct.

Sexual Crimes Information

Rape and sexual assault, such as sexual abuse and sexual misconduct, constitute crimes. Such behavior is prohibited by New York state law (see section 130 of the New York State Penal Law) and the Student Code of Conduct. The college also strongly condemns sexual harassment in any form. Allegations of assault or rape should be reported to University Police: (518) 564-2022. Allegations of sexual harassment should be reported to the Affirmative Action Officer: (518) 564-3310.

A campus publication "Sexual Assault, Partner Violence, Stalking & Hate Crimes What Every Student Should Know" includes information about campus security procedures and practices.

Image of safety signsFire Safety

If a fire occurs in your room or office:

  • Report all fires to 911.
  • Get out of the building and stay out.
  • Activate a pull box if the building alarm has not sounded.
  • Do not fight the fire.
  • Close the door to the room after exiting.
  • Exit the building using emergency exits and stairwells.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • Once outside, move to a safe area at least 150 feet from the building.
  • Call University Police at 564-2022.
  • Do Not Return to evacuated building unless notified by University Police.
  • If you are unable to evacuate the building, Dial 911 with your location, then remain in the room, close the door to the room, block the bottom of the door with a wet towel if possible to prevent smoke from entering.
  • If possible, identify your location by hanging clothing outside a window.
  • Keep low, where air is less toxic

Campus Judicial Process

Where there is probable cause to believe the college's regulations prohibiting bias/hate, sexual assault, domestic violence and/or stalking have been violated, the college will pursue judicial sanctions. Judicial Sanctions may include suspension or dismissal from the college. (Criminal charges may result in fines and /or incarceration.)

During the campus judicial process, the victim's rights, in cases involving the above-described violations, are:

  • To have a person of the victim’s choice accompany the victim throughout the disciplinary hearing.
  • To make a “victim impact statement” and to suggest an appropriate penalty if the accused is found responsible.
  • To be informed immediately of the outcome of the hearing.
  • To remain present during the entire proceeding.
  • If a victim has been sexually assaulted his or her irrelevant past sexual history will not be discussed during the hearing.
  • The accuser and the accused are entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during a disciplinary proceeding as outlined in Section VI of the Student Conduct Manual.

Victim Information, Safety and Support

If you are a victim or a witness to: bias/hate, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, physical violence and/or stalking:

  • Get to a safe place as soon as you can.
  • In the case of sexual assault, try to preserve all physical evidence; do not bathe, douche, or change your clothes.
  • Contact University Police immediately (call 911, or use a Blue Light Phone, or call (518) 564-2022, or stop by the University Police Department in the Health Center Building.

Remember, assaults – sexual or otherwise – are crimes; they are not the victim's fault. Victims have the right to pursue adjudication of crimes that occur on the SUNY Plattsburgh campus through criminal courts and/or through the campus judicial process.

Additional Resources

Crisis Intervention/Counseling/Medical

  • 911 (for all emergency calls including ambulance service)
  • Center for Student Health & Psychological Services – On-Campus
    Health Center Building
    Phone: (518) 564-3086
    After hours call (518) 564-2022
  • Sexual Assault Services – Off-Campus
    66 Brinkerhoff Street
    Phone:  (518) 825-6277 or 1-877-212-2323 (24-hour hotline)
  • STOP Domestic Violence, Behavioral Health Services North – Off-Campus
    22 US Oval- Suite 218
    Phone: (518) 563-6904 or 1-888-563-6904 (24-hour hotline)
  • Northern Adirondack Planned Parenthood – Off-Campus
    66 Brinkerhoff Street
    Phone:  (518) 561-4430

Law Enforcement Assistance

  • 911 (for all emergency calls)
  • University Police – On-Campus
    Health Center Building
    Phone: (518) 564-2022 (24-hour service)
  • City of Plattsburgh Police Department – Off-Campus
    1 Pine Street
    Phone: (518) 563-3411 (24-hour service)
  • New York State Police – Off-Campus
    9 Dunning Way
    Phone: (518) 563-3761 (24-hour service)
  • Clinton County District Attorney – Off-Campus
    Government Center Building
    Phone:  (518) 565-4770
  • Clinton County Sheriff’s Department – Off-Campus
    25 McCarthy Drive
    Phone: (518) 565-4300

Other On-Campus Resources

  • Dean of Students/Judicial Affairs
    Kehoe Building, 6th Floor
    Phone:  (518) 564-3282
  • Title IX Coordinator/Affirmative Action Officer
    Hawkins Hall, Room 053A
    Phone:  (518) 564-3310
  • Hazing Hotline
    Phone: (518) 564-5555
  • Vandalism Hotline
    Phone: (518) 564-2677

Other Off-Campus

  • New York State Crime Victims Board
    34 Court Street
    Phone: (518) 565–4648 or 565-4477
  • Poison Control
    Phone: (800) 336-6997
  • Suicide Prevention Hotline
    Phone: (866) 577-3836

SUNY Plattsburgh provides equal opportunity in education and employment without regard to race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, status as a Vietnam-Era Veteran or qualified veteran with a disability, except where age or sex are bona fide occupational qualifications or disability is a bona fide disqualification.

Contact Information

Plattsburgh State University Police
Phone: (518) 564-2022
Fax: (518) 564-4025
Hazing Hotline(518) 564-5555
Vandalism Hotline: (518) 564-2677

Email the Parking Office: parking@plattsburgh.edu

In case of an EMERGENCY dial 911

Mailing Address:

University Police Department
SUNY Plattsburgh
101 Broad Street
Plattsburgh, New York 12901