Residence Hall Safety
Thieves are opportunists and every day students unwittingly provide these unscrupulous individuals with the opportunity of a lifetime.
Always remember to lock your door when leaving your room or apartment. It only takes two to three seconds for someone to enter and scan a dorm room for unsecured property to take.
Remember these tips:
- Secure all valuables. Don’t leave your wallet, purse or loose money lying on the desktop.
- Grab your keys and lock the door behind you when you leave; even if you are just heading to the bathroom to take a shower or style your hair.
- Never ‘prop’ open any hallway or exterior doors to any residence facility. This invites unauthorized persons to enter the facility. Bypassing or circumventing security procedures could put your life and the life of your fellow residents at risk.
- Never allow strangers or unauthorized persons to enter controlled areas.
- Report all suspicious persons and activities to your Resident Advisor, Area Coordinator, or to Campus Safety right away.
Being alert and using common sense are the best ways to prevent crime from happening to you and to those around you in
our community. Continued vigilance and watchfulness are necessary to help you avoid becoming a victim of crime. By
taking a few simple precautions you can reduce risk to yourself and also discourage those who commit crime.
Off Campus Housing Safety
In Your Apartment
- Always lock your door whether you are inside your apartment or going out for the day.
- Don't leave a spare key in an easy-to-find spot. They are the first place someone who wants to enter your apartment will look!
- Don't let strangers into your apartment. Look through a peephole before answering the door. If you do not have a peephole installed, use a chain to limit how far the door can open when speaking to the individual.
- if someone knocks on your door and says they are from the fire department, city inspections, gas company, etc. ask to see ID before letting them into your apartment.
- Do not put your phone number on your mailbox.
- Ask local police to do a free safety check/survey of your place. (York City police can be reached at 717.846.1234; ask for the community services division).
In the Parking Lot or on the Street
- Have your car keys in hand, ready to put in the lock, as you're walking toward your car.
- Always keep your car locked whether you're in it or not.
- Walk out to your car with someone you trust, especially when it is dark.
- Look in the backseat before entering the car to make sure no one is hiding back there.
- Don't keep valuables in your vehicle.
- Always lock up your bicycle either on campus or at home.
- Don't leave valuables in plain view or large amounts of cash in your apartment.
- Keep your blinds pulled down at night or when you are out so thieves do not see what is available to them.
- Engrave your property such as TV's, computers, gaming consoles, stereos, etc. with your driver's license number and state. Also, maintain a record of all of your property's serial numbers along with photographs or video.
Trusting your intuition is the key to staying safe. Get help right away when you're feeling threatened.
- Do not engage an unknown caller in conversation or give away any personal details. Keep track of when nuisance calls are made and what is said. Save answering machine messages too. Turn information over to police right away to help them track your caller.
- Rather than calling, some people may send threatening emails or become threatening on message software or social media. Save messages, print them out, and turn them over to authorities right away. Also, block the user or change your username. DO NOT CONTINUE HAVING CONVERSATIONS WITH THE INDIVIDUAL.
- There is safety in numbers. If you decide to go out for or a walk at night, take others with you.
- Being alone and under the influence of alcohol makes you MORE of a target to assailants. Make good choices when attending parties and leave with friends.
- If a friend seems ill, intoxicated, or drugged, get help immediately. Don't worry about getting them 'in trouble." Their safety and well-being need to be your foremost concern.
- Stay calm as possible. Quick, clear-headed thinking can make all the difference.
- Don't play the hero by stepping into a volatile situation. Chances are you'll get hurt and make the situation worse. Instead, get help from authorities so the situation can be handled safely and effectively.
- Know exactly where all the exits are in your apartment.
- Keep a fully charged fire extinguisher available on every floor and in the kitchen.
- Don't smoke in bed or while lying on the couch.
- Don't overload electrical sockets with appliances.
- Check to ensure the installation and operation of fire protection devices.
Reporting an Incident
All students, faculty, staff, and guests of York College are encouraged to report emergencies, criminal activity, and suspicious persons in an accurate and timely manner to Campus Safety at 717.815.1314 (ext. 1314 from an on campus phone) or the appropriate local police department by calling 9.1.1.
You may also report in person at the Campus Safety Office, located in the Manor Northeast lobby, or by approaching an officer on duty.
- Regular Semester
- Monday-Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Summer Semester
- Monday-Thursday: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
There are also a number of emergency call boxes located throughout campus that can be used to contact Campus Safety. Most have a blue light to indicate their presence. Pushing the emergency button will automatically place a call to Campus Safety.
Campus Safety will conduct a thorough investigation of reported incidents when deemed appropriate. All felony offenses and most misdemeanor of the Pennsylvania Crimes Code will be reported to the appropriate local police agency.
- Regular Semester
Driving on Campus
In addition to College policies, all traffic regulations regulated by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania apply and are enforced on campus.
York College Campus Safety Officers are authorized by the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code (Title 75) to regulate and enforce all campus traffic regulations.
Drivers can avoid Traffic citations by observing the following:
- The speed limit on all campus roadways is 15 miles per hour.
- Come to a complete stop at all stop signs.
- Pedestrians always have the right-of-way on campus. Always yield to pedestrians in cross-walks.
- Do not operate a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol.
Safe Social Networking
Are you an online social butterfly?
You can stay safe by following the tips below:
- Be careful about posting your current location or upcoming plans. There may be people in your network that you don't want to have that information.
- Don't post any identifying information on a social websites. This includes phone numbers and your dorm name and room number.
- Be wary of privacy settings on social websites; don't post personal or financial information. You can't be to sure with whom your sharing information with.
- Don't accept requests or messages from people you don't know. They might be scam artists.
- Never post pictures of a sexual nature of yourself or someone else.
- Online information lives online forever. Be careful about what you post. Job recruiters often turn to the web and social media websites to screen job applicants. Some off-color post that you make today could have unforseeable consequences in the future.
- Some people you may meet in social websites may not be who they say they are. Never meet face-to-face with someone you've met online.
- Never give out your password to anyone.
PA Zero Tolerance Law
Pennsylvania's Zero Tolerance Law
Pennsylvania´s Zero Tolerance Law carries serious consequences for those under 21 who are convicted of driving with any amount of alcohol in their blood. For example, those under 21 who are convicted of driving under the influence with a .02 blood alcohol content, or greater, face severe penalties, including a 12-to-18-month license suspension, 48 hours to six months in jail, and fines from $500 to $5,000.
A vehicle does not have to be involved in order for those under 21 to lose their driving privileges. It is against the law for an individual under the age of 21 to consume, possesses or transport alcohol, or lie about their age to obtain alcohol and carry a fake identification card. If convicted, the minimum penalties are a fine of up to $500, plus court costs; a 90-day license suspension for the first offense; a 1-year suspension for the second offense; and a 2-year suspension for the third and subsequent offenses.
The courts may require offenders to be evaluated to determine the extent of the involvement with alcohol and may also require successful completion of a program of alcohol education, intervention or counseling.
Additional Impacts on Your Driver´s License
If you do not have a driver´s license, you will be ineligible to apply for a learner´s permit for the time period of the suspension. If you are under 16 years of age, your suspension will not begin until your 16th birthday, provided you acknowledge your suspension, and it is received any time prior to your 16th birthday. In addition to serving a suspension, a restoration fee must be paid before your driver?s license will be returned or your application for a Non-Commercial Learner´s Permit (DL-180) considered for processing.
Adults, even parents, who are convicted of knowingly and intentionally supplying minors with alcohol are subject to a fine of at least $1,000 for the first offense and $2,500 for each additional offense and face up to one year in jail. Adults are even liable for guests who drink in their homes.
--Source: Just Drive PA's Traffic Safety Information webpage (http://www.justdrivepa.org/Traffic-Safety-Information-Center/Young-Driver/)
How to Avoid Being Stalked in Cyberspace (and What to do if You Are)
Using electronic media, such as the Internet, email, or other electronic communications devices, to repeatedly threaten and harass another person is a crime. Cyberstalking is similar to physical stalking in that the stalker's intended purpose is to exert or maintain control over his or her victim. In most cases the person being stalked is usually familiar with the stalker!
Cyberstalking differs from physical stalking because the victim and the perpetrator can be separated geographically and that the stalker generally relies on the Internet to harass and/or threaten the victim. The stalker can also easily encourage other Internet users to victimize his or her target by posing as the victim in chatrooms or by posting inflammatory message on internet bulletin boards, etc.
Just like physical stalking, cyberstalking can lead to physical violence, where victims can suffer psychological trauma, often resulting in a variety of conditions from anxiety and depression to insomnia. Moreover, the lack of direct contact between the victim and the cyberstalker can hamper efforts by law enforcement to find and arrest the offender.
The National Crime Prevention Council offers the following tips to help protect yourself from becoming a victim to cyberstalking:
- Make a list of safe sites (sites that adopt an anti-harassment policy and follow through with it. Only use those sites.
- Never give out any personal information about yourself to strangers in emails and chatrooms or on social media websites.
- Don't publish your residence hall and room number or your phone number on your facebook or other social media websites.
- When you are online, only type things you would actually say to someone face-to-face. Think about how what you say might be interpreted without the context of body language and voice.
- Make sure that your screen name is neutral; never use your real name, nickname, or any type of suggestive name.
- Be very cautious about meeting an online acquaintance in person. If you choose to do so, always take someone with you and meet in a public place.
- If you experience contact with someone that is unpleasant or hostile, sign off immediately. Report the incident to your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Most chat rooms and bulletin boards have a reporting system for unpleasant encounters.
The following tips are helpful if you find yourself the victim of cyberstalking:
- Make it absolutely clear to the stalker that you would like him or her not to contact you again.
- If you are under the age of 18, immediately talk to your parents or an adult you can trust about the situation. You may be in physical danger.
- If you reside on campus, contact Campus Safety immediately!
- If your email program has filtering capabilities, use them to block or filter email from the stalker. Sometimes you can block chatroom contact as well.
- If you are using the College email system, this can be done.
- Inform your ISP of the situation and request a new log-on name and password. If your ISP is not responsive, get a new account.
- If it is a York College account, contact the College IT department to learn what options are available to you.
- Keep a log of all communications from the stalker. Make copies of every email, and do not alter them in any way. This is very important because this may be your only evidence of the crime.
- If the harassment does not stop, contact your local police department and tell them the situation.
- If you reside on campus, contact Campus Safety and make the report.
Campus Safety may be reached, at any time, at 717.815.1314, however, if you feel that you are in immediate danger, call 9.1.1. immediately for assistance.
Fore more information, contact the National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC). You can call the Victim Assistance Hotline at 800.FYI.CALL Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. EST or by sending an email to email@example.com.
Skateboards, Skaters, & Bicyclists
Skateboards and skaters may be on campus if:
- They are a registered student.
- They are on the path between the bridge and the shopping center.
- They are in an empty/partially empty parking area and not in close proximity to parked vehicles.
- They are on the sidewalks between the hours of 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.
Skateboarders and skaters will also yield the right-of-way to all pedestrian and vehicle traffic.
Individuals are prohibited from skating or skate-boarding on the academic mall area and are prohibited from engaging in tricks (sliding, grinding, ramp building, jumps, etc.) anywhere on College grounds which involve any College property (i.e., roadways, stairs, steps, railings, benches, tables, entrances to buildings, etc.). Skateboarders and skaters are also prohibited from skating on the sidewalks between the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
York College will not be held accountable for injuries sustained on campus properties as a result of these actions; however, first aid for injuries should be sought immediately and the incident reported to Campus Safety promptly.
The use of skates, and skateboards inside of campus buildings, including residence halls, is strictly prohibited. It is recommended that the operator of skates and skateboards wear the appropriate manufactured-suggested safety equipment while using the equipment on campus. Individuals who use the equipment recklessly or without care of others and College property may be subject to disciplinary action under the Campus judicial system.
The use of bicycles on College roadways are subject to the same policies and laws regarding the operation of a motorized vehicle under the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code (Title 75). Bicyclists must yield the right-of-way to all pedestrian and vehicle traffic and are prohibited from riding on sidewalks between the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
York College will not be held accountable for injuries sustained on campus properties as a result of these actions; however, first aid for injuries should be sought immediately and the incident reported to Campus Safety promptly.
Use of bicycles inside of campus buildings, including residence halls, is strictly prohibited.
It is recommended that the operator of bicycles wear the appropriate manufactured-suggested safety equipment while using the equipment on campus. Individuals who use the equipment recklessly or without care of others and College property may be subject to disciplinary action under the Campus judicial system.
Lost & Found Property
All property that is found on campus is turned in to and maintained by the Department of Campus Safety, located in Manor Northeast, for a period of six (6) months.
We will make every effort to return any property to its rightful owner; however, it is your responsibility to claim the item in a timely manner. You must present a photo ID in order to claim any property, lost ID cards notwithstanding. Any items not claimed after the six-month period will be destroyed or donated to charity when possible. If we are able to identify the owner of the found property, an email with the subject 'York College Lost and Found Property' will be sent to the students York College email address.
If you have lost an item and wish to report it, please contact us at 717.815.1314 from off-campus or at extension 1314 from on campus. We will need a detailed description of the item that you are looking for. You may also report the lost item by completing an online form here.
If you have found property, please turn it into the Campus Safety office, located in Manor Northeast, or at the Campus Information Center, located inside the lobby of the Student Union.
If you have lost your faculty, staff or student ID card, you may disable the card from being used by visiting the flex card website. Click on 'Manage Account' and report the card as lost/stolen. If the card is found, you may revisit the website and re-enable the card in the same manner.
Bicycle Registration and Security Information
Pre-register your bicycle with Campus Safety here. You will need to have the following information handy:
- Make and Model,
- Frame Size (in inches)
- Serial Number,
- Number of Gears
You can also take photos of the bicycle (and the manufacturer label) and included them with the pre-registration information. Once submitted, visit the Campus Safety office to pick up your decal. It is recommended that you apply the sticker in an inconspicuous place on the bike.
Bike Theft: Realities and Risks
Bicycle theft has become a tremendous problem on College and University campuses and York College is no exception. Bicycles and bicycle parts are in big demand.
There are several bike racks strategically located around campus that are available to the campus community for bike storage during all hours of the day. Northside Commons has a bike room, located just inside the main entrance for residents to store bikes.
Thieves look for the quick and easy steal rather than the difficult steal.
Make It Hard To Steal
It has been found that in the vast majority of bicycle thefts, bicycles were not locked, improperly locked, or locked with inadequate locking devices such as lightweight cables or chains or low-quality U-lock devices.
You should always carry a secure lock whenever you plan to leave your bicycle unattended. The U-locks have proven to be most effective, but like all locks, they can be defeated. Use a high-end U-lock to reduce the chances of your lock being defeated. You should always exercise care in where and how you lock your bike.
Always lock your bicycle through its frame and rear wheel to an approved bicycle parking rack. You can also use a cable to secure the front wheel to the frame and/or rack! Lock all free parts of the bicycle as well or take them with you. If you lock only the front wheel to the bike lock you may return to find your bike gone and only that wheel remaining. Leave your bicycle in a visible, well-lit area.
Registering Your Bike (It's free)
Campus Safety encourages you to register your bike, which can be completed here. Once pre-registration has been completed, you should visit the Campus Safety office in Manor Northeast during normal business hours to obtain your permit. Registering discourages theft and aids in identification should your bike get stolen. In addition, any personalization on your bike (stickers, markings, etc.) should be documented and kept in case your bike is stolen. This will make it easier for police to identify.
All of this information should be stored and saved along with purchase receipts, manufacturer’s information, and a photograph of the bicycle.
When registering your bike, you will need to know your make, model, frame size (in inches), color, number of gears, and the serial number. Bike decals should be affixed to the bicycle in a non-descript area of the frame.
You can also register your bicycle with the National Bike Registry (for a fee). https://www.nationalbikeregistry.com/
If your bicycle is stolen on campus you should report the crime immediately to the Department of Campus Safety. Providing the police with descriptive information such as the serial number and your registration number—if you didn't register with the College—increases the chance of recovery.
To report the theft of a bicycle contact DCS at 717.815.1314.
What You Should Do
If you believe that your bike has been stolen or impounded, you should DCS at 717.815.1314.
If you happen to witness a bike theft, either by force or stealth, dial 911 immediately and inform the dispatcher where you are and what is happening. Try to remember as much as you can about the suspect for police reports.
If you suspect that someone has stolen your bike, do not directly confront them because an incident may occur. Contact DCS and give them as much information as possible. You can never be entirely sure that a suspect has stolen your bike because many bikes look the same and many people have the same bike.
And remember, if you lock your bike tightly and securely with a U-lock, your chances of being the victim of a bike theft will be substantially lower.
There are important actions that you can take to help you stay safe while ridesharing.
Health and Safety Tips for the Holiday Season
Winter Weather Safety
Many people enjoy spending time outside in winter, skiing, snowboarding, skating, or participating in other outdoor activities. Remember winter weather can be hazardous to those without adequate awareness, clothing, and gear. To minimize and avoid injuries precautions should be taken such as:
- Wear multiple layers of moisture-wicking clothing and outer gear, and remember to always protect your head, hands, and feet.
- Drink plenty of fluids because cold weather suppresses thirst and dehydration can occur without proper fluid intake.
- Take periodic breaks to warm up, especially if wind velocity increases or the temperature drops.
- Carry an extra supply of hand and feet warmers.
- Learn the symptoms of cold-related injuries: heavy shivering followed by no shivering; severe fatigue; confusion and disorientation; blue skin; and slowed pulse and breathing.
- Ensure you are not exposed to extreme weather conditions such as freezing temperatures and wind-chill for a dangerous amount of time (the National Weather Service provides a user-friendly wind-chill chart and calculator to estimate safe exposure times).
- The Federal Emergency Management Agency's Ready Campaign website offers information and resources on Winter Storms and Extreme Cold to help you prepare.
Holiday Health and Safety
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provide Holiday Health and Safety Tips on traveling safely, managing stress, preparing for winter weather, preventing injuries, handling food, and more.
Safety When Leaving Campus
The Department of Campus Safety provides tips for campus community members to consider when leaving for break, including:
- Lock the doors and windows to your residence hall, house, apartment or office and take all keys with you.
- Take valuable personal property home with you. If you leave anything of value in your home or office, secure it in a locked closet or cabinet. Store your bike in a legal and secure location using a U-lock.
- Prepare your vehicle for any road trips and check for any safety issues like fluid levels or tire pressure. If you're leaving a car on campus you are required to park on the lower level of the parking garage. Remember to remove all valuables, and lock the doors.
- Talk to your roommates about when everyone is coming and going.
- If you are approved to stay on campus, keep an eye out for any suspicious persons or activities and call campus safety if you see anything that doesn't seem quite right.
Shopping Safety Tips
Campus Safety advises that shoppers be aware of their surroundings, keep an eye on people around them and shop with others. Being alone in an isolated or unlit area with expensive items and cash is just not safe.
- Avoid carrying and displaying large amounts of cash.
- Lock valuables, electronics, and newly purchased items in the trunk of your vehicle.
- Park vehicles in well-lit areas and walk with other pedestrians. Have your keys in hand before walking to your vehicle.
- Keep cell phones stored away until you’re in your car; using cell phones can be distracting and high-value smartphones are a target for thieves.
- Purses should be held under your arm and wallets should be kept in a front pants pocket.
- Only carry as many bags and packages as you can safely. Don’t overwhelm yourself with heavy items; ask for assistance from store employees if needed.
- Place “high-value” brand bags in plain bags if possible. Thieves may target people holding bags that they believe have expensive items inside.
- If you feel uncomfortable, or see suspicious activity, return to the store immediately. Make a report to employees or security staff.
The Department of Campus Safety wishes you a Happy & Safe Holiday Season!