SafeCampus history

In April 2007, the UW was deeply impacted by the on-campus shooting of a staff member by her former romantic partner. This tragedy was the culminating event in a series of relationship violence and stalking incidents to which the University was not resourced to adequately respond.

SafeCampus, the University’s Violence Prevention & Response Program, was one solution created to help prevent future incidents of violence. Born out of a very particular type of tragedy, we believe it is imperative that our staff members have theoretical and practical knowledge and experience working with survivors of power-based violence and coercive control.

Our violence prevention model

SafeCampus is built upon the best practices of threat assessment experts and scholars to be a model of an effective behavioral intervention and threat assessment and management program. We believe that violence can be prevented if we employ a community engagement model empowering UW faculty, staff and students to alert us to concerning behaviors.

We established a dedicated phone line, with specialists taking calls 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to respond to individuals reporting violence, safety concerns and concerning behaviors. This response work was paired with a robust public awareness campaign, wherein we trained our community to be attentive to their colleagues and fellow students and to call SafeCampus with concerns.

Our program growth

Over the last 11 years, SafeCampus has grown to not only be the hub for violence prevention and response concerns, but also to be:

  • the University’s threat assessment and case management unit
  • the entity that provides tailored violence prevention and response training (2015)
  • the University designated intake point for suicide concerns for others (2015)
  • the designated place for consulting about Title IX disclosures (2016)
  • the University reporting entity for Child Abuse & Neglect reports (2018)
  • the home of the EPIC Program that provides prevention of sexual harassment training to academic student employees (2018)

For these reasons, our highly specialized staff are also certified/trained in suicide and crisis response, threat assessment and management, safety planning for power-based violence and stalking, and general cyber-safety concerns.

SafeCampus has also experienced an exponential increase in call and case volume — since 2014 we’ve seen a 176% increase in case volume.

  • In 2016, we managed 527 cases. Of those, 70 involved suicide concerns and 81 were Title IX related.*
  • In 2018, we received and worked on a total of 1,031 cases, 123 were suicide concerns and 271 were Title IX related.*

*Title IX related refers to cases that include sexual assault, sexual harassment, stalking, indecent exposure, sexual explotation, relationship or domestic violence or retaliation for reporting one of these situations.