Part 3 - Comprehensive Standards
  

3.11.2  The institution takes reasonable steps to provide a healthy, safe, and secure environment for all members of the campus community. (Institutional environment)

Compliance
Partial Compliance
Non-Compliance

Narrative

The University of New Orleans takes reasonable steps to provide a healthy, safe, and secure environment for all members of the campus community.  These responsibilities are shared by the Offices of Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S Office) and the UNO Police Department.  The efforts of these offices are supplemented by a variety of campus initiatives and other campus departments.

The Director of Environmental Health and Safety reports to the Assistant Vice President of Public Safety/Police Chief who reports to the Executive Assistant to the President.  Through communication with the Facility Services Department, the Safety Office has access to personnel who can quickly repair unsafe conditions.  The Risk Management Coordinator reports to the Director of EH&S and performs safety training and Risk Management duties for the University. The Safety Inspection Coordinator performs inspections throughout the University and takes care of the day to day operations of the Pay Parking Lots.

Health and Safety Operations are funded primarily through the University’s General Fund.  The State regularly commits deferred maintenance funds to life safety issues.  Allocation of deferred maintenance funds is managed by the university’s Facility Services (Construction and Renovation) Department.  Life safety issues include ADA compliance and accessibility, elevator modernizations, fire alarm replacements and upgrades, and building fire code compliance deficiencies and enhancements. 

Environmental Health and Safety

Safety is not the exclusive responsibility of the Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) Office, unit supervisors, department heads or college deans. Everyone, including students, is responsible for his or her own safety and for the safety of those with whom they interact. It is the responsibility of all University employees to understand and follow the safety rules and safety policies that have been adopted by the University.

The EH&S Office has broad occupational and general safety responsibility.  It is responsible for implementing the policies and procedures set forth in the Environmental Health and Safety – Safety Manual. These responsibilities fall into the areas of general safety (safety training, control of hazardous materials, emergency preparedness and response, and inspections/investigations, driver’s safety, water vessel safety, etc.

Safety Training

Safety training requirements vary for University employees.  At the new employee orientation meeting, various departments provide the initial safety training for new employees. The New Employee Safety Orientation form and General Orientation Participation list provide the documentation for this initial safety training for all employees.   

Subsequent training takes several forms.  Most low risk (office/classroom setting) employees can self-train using the EH&S Website and the Quarterly Safety Meetings that are distributed by email to all university employees.  The topics of these Safety Meetings cover both general and specific safety topics such as; General Safety Rules, Lock out / Tag out, Holiday Safety, Assignments of Safety Responsibility, Fire Safety, West Nile Virus, etc.  The Safety Office provides training for Driver Safety (both online and instructor lead) and for employees at higher risk, instructor lead training on topics such as blood-borne pathogens.

Individual departments train their employees on the specific procedures and safety responsibilities of the jobs they will be performing.

Emergency Planning and Response

Planning and response to emergencies are coordinated jointly by the University Police Department and the EH&S Office.  The University is proactive with respect to emergency planning and response as indicated in Administrative Policy OP 09.2 UNO Disaster Emergency Plan.  The University of Louisiana System (UL System) is working toward an all hazards approach to emergency planning that will expand the University of New Orleans internal capabilities, as well as network each UL System university in this area for a more efficient incident response.  This UL System effort is being implemented by the University of Louisiana System Emergency Preparedness Steering Committee, of which the UNO Assistant Vice President of Public Safety is both a member and past chair.  The University of New Orleans is a FEMA approved Disaster Resistant University as indicated in the 2011 Hazard Mitigation Plan.

The University’s Emergency Notification System is used to alert the campus community to imminent danger or critical information. It uses several important principles: 

The system uses overlapping technologies to ensure target coverage and to account for possible difficulties. 

The system offers two levels of communication: one brief, focused alert with redirection to other media, such as a Website or telephone hotline, offering more detailed information. 

The system is automated and is designed to deploy easily and quickly (in less than three minutes), leaving University Police with much-needed time to participate in the incident response.  Responsibility for activating the UNO Emergency Communication System depends on the type of emergency. If it is a time sensitive response, such as a shooter on campus, the University Police will initiate the communication and the response. If the situation is not time sensitive, such as a water main leak, the communication is initiated by the Office of Public Relations.

The University tests its Emergency Communications System at least once per semester and receives technical reports to evaluate test effectiveness.  For example, one of these reports shows how many text messages and email messages were made in a particular time frame. 

In addition to receiving information in emergency situations, members of the campus community are able to call for help in an emergency.  A caller using a campus line is immediately connected to the University Police, by dialing x36666, who can respond to the situation and notify local law enforcement agencies as needed. 

During times of crisis, the University’s center of operations moves to a temporary headquarters in the University Computer Center: the Emergency Operations Center.  This center has backup electricity, cooking and sleeping capabilities, meeting areas, and extension phone lines for every major department of the University.  The University’s most common use of the EOC occurs during hurricanes.  To ensure that the University is well prepared for such an event, a formal written plan for responding to Hurricanes and Tropical Storms has been created, Hurricane Emergency Plan.  This plan is revised yearly and includes representation from every area of the University, with leadership from the Department of Public Safety, Presidents Office, EH&S, and University Police.  This plan includes provisions to evacuate the University campus, Campus Evacuation Plan, in accordance with a Memorandum of Understanding with Millsaps College in Jackson Mississippi.  The preparedness committee meets once yearly before the hurricane season to review the plan.  The plan includes hurricane preparedness checklists for the department heads and building coordinators.  The University also has emergency plans for other types of extreme conditions, Extreme Conditions Response Plan, that affect the campus negatively such as flooding, power outages, excessive rainfall, etc.

Safety Procedure Implementation and Assurance of Effectiveness

The State of Louisiana is self-insured through the Louisiana Office of Risk Management (ORM), an agency within the Division of Administration.  The University’s yearly premium for all lines of coverage is approximately $4.4 million.  The EH&S Office through the Risk Management Coordinator, is responsible for filing insurance claims for Property/Building Exposure, Automobile Property and Liability, Comprehensive General Liability, Third Party Liability/Property, and FEMA declared disasters (as a sub-applicant to the State).

Louisiana is an Agreement State with respect to most federal safety regulations.  Although largely exempt from regulations of agencies such as OSHA and the EPA, the University is still required to follow State guidelines that are at least as stringent as their federal counterparts.  These guidelines include regular reporting requirements and scheduled or unscheduled auditing. 

Facilities and grounds are regularly reviewed for health and safety concerns.  Building Safety Inspections are performed quarterly. The EH&S Office, with assistance from the Facility Services Department, maintains and inspects the University’s fire alarms, fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems, special building fire suppression systems, such as those used in commercial cooking hoods and computer server rooms (non-water based) and elevators.  Fire Drills are performed annually on all campus buildings and five times a year in the universities Pontchartrain Hall dormitory.

The University employs a formal procedure for investigating accidents. Departmental designees are trained to assist with accident investigation.  Separate reporting procedures exist for accidents involving employees and non-employees, such as students or visitors. The EH&S office reviews all accident reports and initiates corrective action.  The Human Resources Department is responsible for filing Workers’ Compensation claims as they apply to University employees.  The EH&S office keeps statistics on the University’s accidents in order to study trends and direct corrective action.

Compliance and External Regulations

The University’s health, safety, and environmental practices and procedures are monitored by a number of external agencies with jurisdiction over particular areas. 

The University has passed its yearly ORM State audit for loss prevention and risk management for seven consecutive years.  The EH&S Director has a Loss Prevention Associate designation from the Louisiana Office of Risk Management and is trained yearly in the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act regarding hazardous waste regulations. 

Campus facilities that serve food are subject to inspection by the Louisiana Department of Public Health, and meet or exceed all State requirements.  University buildings are inspected yearly by the Office of the State Fire Marshall for applicable life safety code compliance.  There are no outstanding Office of the State Fire Marshall code deficiencies for campus buildings.  The University has a formal Standard Operating Procedure for addressing any maintenance deficiencies identified during these inspections (Work Orders).  Work Requests from University personnel are converted to work orders by Facility Services personnel.  Work Requests are either entered online for non-emergency requests or by phone, at the Facility Services Service Center, if it is something that needs to be taken care of right away.

Collaboration

The EH&S Office works closely with University departments to ensure health and safety.  These include:

University Police: The EH&S Office provides logistical support in response to emergencies and incidents, communicates with the University administration and other departments in matters related to public safety, and trains police officers in safety procedures.

Student Health Services: The EH&S Office works with the University Staff Physician regarding communicable disease, disposal of Biological Waste and University medical emergency planning.  Examples Meningococcal Meningitis Policy and Procedure.

Housing: The EH&S office provides safety training for the Residence Hall Staff, files claims on behalf of student residents who have experienced an insurable loss due to the University’s negligence, and addresses student resident concerns for safety and health.

Parking: The EH&S office provides support through accident investigation and surveillance for matters related to safety.  This office also performs the day to day operations of the University Pay Parking Department.

Administrators: The EH&S Office works closely with the Director of Student Involvement and Leadership, Human Resources and all Department Heads with regard to safety related issues.  These can include accident/incident investigation, emergency planning and response, safety training for student workers, and consultation on matters of liability.

Office of Disability Services (ODS): The EH&S Director works with ODS and Facility Services to address ADA access and other campus matters.

Campus Safety Committee

The Campus Safety Committee meets twice a year. At that meeting, the EH&S Director informs the committee on the status of the University’s safety programs.  Major accidents/incidents are highlighted, and the committee offers input for long-term corrective action.  The Campus Safety Committee oversees three specialized safety committees.

The Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC).  The mission of this committee is to ensure that all recombinant DNA research conducted at the institution or sponsored by the institution is conducted in compliance with the National Institutes of Health Recombinant DNA Guidelines. It also ensures that protocols of research involving Select Agents (defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), including but not limited to recombinant DNA, are reviewed and found to comply with all national, state, and local requirements.

The UNO IBC has responsibility for such research throughout the University.  IBC members are appointed by the President and the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. The Environmental Health and Safety Office will support the IBC in carrying out its mission.  The IBC is authorized to inspect research facilities, approve research practices and procedures, and to take actions, such as enforcement of cessation of research activities, in the event of an unsafe workplace situation. The University of New Orleans operates Biosafety Level 1 and 2 labs.

The Chemical and Lab Safety Committee.  The mission of this committee is to develop and maintain policies and procedures to ensure the health and safety of UNO Students, Faculty, Staff and visitors related to laboratories and chemicals.  The committee will ensure adherence to all federal, state and local regulations.  It will provide oversight to these policies and procedures and will require that each department take an active role in adhering to them. Policies and procedures will encompass but are not limited to safe work environments subject to the OSHA Laboratory Standard and the University’s Chemical Hygiene Plan. There will be an emphasis on training and oversight of personnel, security of materials and facilities, proper handling of chemicals and waste, and documentation of all safety activities.

The Occupational Health and Safety Committee.  The charge of this committee is to promote and maintain the highest level of physical, mental and social well-being of all faculty, staff, students and visitors to the campuses of the University.  The goal of the committee is the prevention of adverse workplace accidents and incidents by minimizing risks to all occupants of all University buildings and environments.  Risk assessment is an ongoing responsibility of the University and all occupants of University campuses. The Committee is also charged with promoting safety and health in the workplace by monitoring indicators on campus, including, accident/incident reports, police reports, ORM audits, Environmental Health and Safety office audits and complaints and meeting on a quarterly basis to review the university response to the following hazards in the workplace, (Physical Hazards, Physical Agents, Environmental Hazards, Environmental Agents, Fire Hazards, Fire Safety, Mechanical Hazards, Psychosocial issues).

The University possesses a Broad Scope Radioactive Material License issued by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality for the use of low-level radioactive materials in support of University research.  In conjunction with this license, the University maintains a Radiation Safety Officer (not a dedicated position) and a Radiation Safety Committee; (Radiation Safety Manual). 

University Police

The University Policy (UNOPD) is dedicated to maintaining a safe and secure environment for learning and working.  UNO is an urban campus and works closely with area law enforcement agencies to minimize crimes occurring on and around the campus. UNOPD wants students, faculty, and staff to be aware of crime on campus and in the surrounding neighborhoods. The University complies with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act as evidenced by the Annual Security and Fire Safety Reports.  Each year the University files a report with the United States Department of Education reporting the occurrence of crime on campus.  In addition, the UNOPD discloses this information on its website on its daily crime log and in the student newspaper, The Driftwood.  The campus crime statistics website documents crime statistics for the past three years.

The UNOPD also issues crime alerts in the form of formal press releases, text messages, and e-mails to address serious incidents or to educate the University community concerning relevant issues.  The information disclosed online reflects the number of incidents for the crimes of homicide, manslaughter, forcible and non-forcible sex offenses, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor vehicle theft, and arson that occur on or near campus for the previous three calendar years.

The Police Department is open 24/7 and is staffed by commissioned police officers.  Students have 24-hour access to emergency phone lines (280-6666) to UNOPD, as well as to the 911 emergency services.  The UNOPD responds to calls from victims of a crime, those involved in an emergency, witnesses to an incident, and those in need of assistance. 

The UNOPD has a variety of programs and services in place in order to provide a safe and secure campus.  Some of these programs are provided in conjunction with other departments.  Below are detailed descriptions of these programs.

Emergency Call System.  The UNOPD operates four emergency telephones installed at various locations throughout the campus. The Emergency Call Stations are easily recognizable by a tall yellow pole with a light at the top.  When the user pushes the easily accessible emergency button, the phone automatically dials the number, and direct contact is made with the UNOPD.  A blue strobe light is then activated, and an officer is dispatched to the location. The Emergency Call System provides the opportunity for immediate contact with police officers, thereby providing a feeling of security to all who walk the University campus.

Crime Prevention Programs.  The UNOPD works in conjunction with Freshman Orientation to disseminate information about the duties and responsibilities of the UNOPD, as well as security and safety tips.  Annually, UNOPD and the Office of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management schedule crime prevention and awareness programs. These safety awareness and educational programs include, RAD training, Coffee with a COP, crime prevention, security and safety tips.

Police Foot and Bike Patrol.  UNOPD uses a Bike Patrol to supplement vehicle and foot patrol as part of its overall effort to make the campus safe.  The Bike Patrol enables officers to cover a larger area, while allowing for quick response should the need arise.  Officers on bike patrol are also better able to converse with students, faculty, and staff. 

Anonymous Crime Reporting.  The UNO Police Department realizes that many people choose not to report crime because of a reluctance to become involved. The Anonymous Complaint Report form website has been created in an attempt to allow the anonymous reporting of crimes committed at UNO.  All reports will be investigated thoroughly.  Because the Police Officer may need information in addition to what is left by an anonymous donor, a contact number is requested so that the individual can be contacted if needed. If the individual is contacted, the name will not be required.  Individuals who see anything or anyone suspicious are asked to report it immediately to the UNO Police Department.

Crime Stoppers Tips Line.  Operated by the New Orleans Crime Stoppers, this is an anonymous tips line to assist the department and the community in the prevention and solving of crime.  Members of the community are encouraged to report any information regarding crimes that may have occurred by dialing Crime Stoppers or the UNOPD and following the instructions given.  All callers remain anonymous.

 

Supporting Documents

Document Description
Document IconAnnual_Security_Fire_Safety_Reports_WebsiteAnnual Security and Fire Safety Report Website
Document IconAnonymous_Complaint_Report_WebsiteAnonymous Complaint Report Website
Document IconBlue_Light_Phone_System_WebsiteBlue Light Phone System Website
Document IconBuilding_Coord_Hurricane_ChecklistBuilding Coordinator Hurricane Checklist
Document IconCampus_Crime_Statistics_WebsiteCampus Crime Statistics Website
Document IconCampus_Evacuation_PlanCampus Evacuation Plan
Document IconCrimestoppers_WebsiteNew Orleans Crime Stoppers Website
Document IconDaily_Crime_LogDaily Crime Log
Document IconDepartment_Head_Hurricane_ChecklistDepartment Head Hurricane Checklist
Document IconDriver's_Safety_Training_WebsiteUNO Driver Safety Training Website
Document IconEHSO_SafetyManualUNO Environmental Health and Safety – Safety Manual
Document IconEmergency_Campus_Notification_WebsiteUNO Emergency Notification Website
Document IconEnvironmental_Health_Safety_Office_WebsiteUNO Offices of Environmental Health and Safety Website
Document IconExtreme_Conditions_Response_PlanExtreme Conditions Response Plan
Document IconFacility_Services_Service_Center_Work_Request_WebsiteFacility Services Service Center Work Request Website
Document IconFacility_Services_Standard_Operating_Procedure_Work_OrderFacility Services Standard Operating Procedure
Document IconFire_Drill_Evacuation_Report_SampleFire Drill Evacuation Report Sample
Document IconHurricane_Emergency_PlanHurricane Emergency Plan
Document IconLA_ORM_WebsiteLouisiana Office of Risk Management Website
Document IconLab_Standard_Chemical_Hygiene_PlanUNO Laboratory Standard and Chemical Hygiene Plan
Document IconMOU_Millsaps_CollegeMemorandum of Understanding with Millsaps College
Document IconNew_Employee_Safety_OrientationNew Employee Safety Orientation Form and General Orientation Participation List
Document IconPolice_Department_WebsiteUNO Police Department Website
Document IconQuarterly_Building_Inspection_ReportQuarterly Building Safety Inspection Report
Document IconQuarterly_Safety_Meeting_Assignment_ResponsibilityQuarterly Assignments of Safety Responsibility
Document IconQuarterly_Safety_Meeting_NotificationQuarterly Safety Meetings Notification
Document IconRadiation_Safety_ManualUNO Radiation Safety Manual
Document IconSafety_Awareness_Educational_Programs WebsiteSafety Awareness Educational Programs
Document IconTechnical_Report_ExampleExample of Technical Report for Emergency Communication System
Document IconUNO_AP_OP_92_Disaster_Emergency_PlansUNO Administrative Policy OP 09.2 UNO Disaster Emergency Plan
Document IconUNO_Hazard_Mitigation_Plan_2011_2016UNO 2011 Hazard Mitigation Plan
Document IconUNO_IBC_IntroductionInstitutional Biosafety Committee (IBC)
Document IconUNOPD_Crime_AlertsUNO Police Department Crime Alerts