Demand CSULA to Provide Active Shooting Protocols and Updated Safety Measures

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We are writing to you as a representation of the student and employee body at California State University, Los Angeles. We are demanding our local representatives, Cal State LA Administration, the Cal State LA Public Safety Advisory, and specifically the Department of Public Safety to provide direct, proper, and timely information, updates, procedures, and training in regards to any potential danger at Cal State LA that is a threat to the lives of its students, staff, and faculty. 

In the past eight days, Cal State LA has received three threats to the campus, two of which were identified as shooting threats, and one undisclosed graffiti threat. The first threat on October 29th was only made known to the student body approximately two hours after the initial threat was called in, with many students reporting they did not receive any texts alerts, emails, or information regarding the incident whatsoever. When the second threat took place on November 4th, students that were lucky were notified that there was an active threat to the library, but that the source was “unknown” and to “be alert”; somehow, the unknown threat was significant enough to caution students to be alert, but not to evacuate the library or even notify everyone of potential danger. A few hours later, Cal State LA sent out an email with information regarding the threat, but it was reported that many students did not receive this email as well. A briefing of the most recent threat on November 6th was sent out to students from approximately 7-8pm, describing a “future threat” found written in a campus bathroom. With no further details provided, we were assured that there was “no immediate threat” and that campus is “safe.” How the seriousness of a threat and subsequent “safety” of campus is determined is not information that is provided or accessible to students, staff, or faculty. The vague, untimely, and lack of alerts sent by the school have caused anxiety, mass hysteria, and rumors to circulate across campus. We all have questions and genuine concerns for our safety that are not being addressed. 

Amidst all of the confusion and uncertainty, one thing is clear: there has been a large display of carelessness on the part of Cal State LA and the Department of Public Safety that has directly put individuals’ lives as risk. We deserve to know when and what to do if there is a direct threat to our lives, in a climate where gun violence and mass shootings in schools are such common occurrences. At Cal State LA, we are calling for:

  • Active shooter training for all University employees
  • Active shooter procedures for all students and employees taught and posted visibly in every room
  • Locks on all classroom and office doors in every building
  • Doors that swing inside only
  • One ‘active shooter drill’ every semester
  • Updates to the text alert system that ensures every student and employee receives a notification at the exact time of administrative knowledge of a threat
  • Live tweeting from a University twitter account (or through the GET app) during any potential/real threat providing all known information, and addressing rumors 
  • Transparency from administration in informing students and employees of the procedures for determining the viability of a threat

Time is of the essence and these minimal requests are extremely reasonable and valid, especially at a time when gun violence and mass shootings are so prevalent in America. Many students do not feel safe and are extremely dissatisfied with the way this situation has been handled. Safety should be a top priority of the University and we deserve transparency and respect when our lives may be in danger. We demand our requests be addressed, implemented, and our voices heard as we are speaking in the best interest of all students, faculty, and staff at Cal State LA.