How to Keep Your University Safe During Protests

Colleges across the US could face increasing violence due to political protests on their campuses. What can a university do to keep everyone safe? Prepare.


Ensuring peaceful protests

Plan for the “known” and the “unknown,” suggests Integrity Services, a security consulting company. They say equipment, training and procedures will work for what’s expected. However, if things go awry, you’ll need a plan B, C and D.


Integrity also suggests for schools to identify the “What ifs” and mob mentality, which in my opinion, are the main precursors to a violent crowd. Once identified, create procedures to address these triggers.


According to the National Threat Assessment Center (NTAC), schools can work through a threat assessment to learn more about student violent behaviors before they become a problem.  This same logic can be used for protests.


Gather all the most relevant information about student communication and behaviors, the negative or stressful events students are experiencing, and the resources students possess to overcome those setbacks and challenges. Analyze these factors to determine any likely outcomes and create a plan.


Choosing security products for your campus

Many vendors are creating products and services to contain school violence, but knowing which products to implement is not an easy task.


You could start with an experienced security person that only reports to the superintendent or the dean at the university level, says ZeroNow, a school safety advocacy group. They say schools should have an experienced security person on staff to carefully review and determine which products and services work best for their facility and their school culture. Most importantly, this person should have the resources, funding and support necessary to implement these tools and procedures.


Browse the Shelter Shutters website for information on secure, blackout window shutters, for your campus or call us at 1-800-624-1695.


Exercising our First Amendment right doesn’t have to end in violence. Protests can be a peaceful experience and may even result in progress. Universities just need to be ready and prepared for anything and everything.