Sep 27, 2021  
2021-2022 Catalog 
  
2021-2022 Catalog

Workplace Violence Policy


It is Patrick Henry Community College’s policy to promote a safe environment for its employees, students, and campus visitors. The college is committed to working with its employees to maintain a work and learning environment free from violence, threats of violence, harassment, intimidation, and other disruptive behavior. Violence, threats of violence, harassment, intimidation, and other expressions that communicate a direct or indirect threat of physical disruptive behavior in our workplace will not be tolerated. Such harm to one’s self or to others. All reports of incidents will be taken seriously and will be dealt with appropriately. Individuals who commit such acts may be removed from college property and may be subject to disciplinary action, criminal penalties, or both.

All employees and students should cooperate to implement this policy effectively and maintain a safe working and learning environment. Do not ignore violent, threatening, harassing, intimidating, or other disruptive behavior. If you observe or experience such behavior by anyone on college property or at a college function, you should report that person immediately to campus police or other college officials, regardless of whether the person is an employee or student. College personnel who receive such reports should seek advice from their respective Vice President, the Vice President for Finance and Administrative Services, or the college’s Human Resource Director.

Please NOTE: Threats or assaults that require immediate attention by security or police should be reported first to PHCC security at 276-732-2406 or to local police by calling 911.

PHCC will support all efforts made by college personnel in dealing with violent, threatening, harassing, intimidating, and other disruptive behavior in our workplace and will monitor whether this policy is being implemented effectively. For additional information, contact the Vice President of Financial and Administrative Services or the Human Resource Manager.

Workplace Violence Prevention and Threat Assessment Policy Guidelines

Purpose: The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the prevention of workplace and general campus violence. It includes the formation of campus Threat Assessment Teams and the promotion and maintenance of a productive environment for learning and working that is free from threats, intimidation, and violence.

Coverage: These policy guidelines will apply to all faculty, staff, students, visitors, contractors, and third parties while on college property and while attending college functions. Students may be covered under additional provisions of their respective college’s Student Handbook.

  1. Definitions:

Threat. Any oral or written expression or gesture that could be interpreted by a reasonable person as conveying an intent to cause physical harm to persons or property. Statements such as, “I’ll get him” or “She won’t get away with this” could be examples of threatening expressions depending on the facts and circumstances involved.

Workplace: Any college property or any other location where college functions are being performed. This will include, but not be limited to, locations where a college employee is performing any work-related duties or where any student is performing any college-related activities.

Workplace Violence. An action (verbal, written, or physical aggression) which is intended to control or cause, or is capable of causing, death or serious bodily injury to oneself or others, or damage to property. Workplace violence includes abusive behavior toward authority, intimidating or harassing behavior, and threats.

  1. Policy: PHCC prohibits threats and acts of violence on college property, at any college-sponsored event; while engaged in college business, educational, or athletic activities; and while traveling in state vehicles. Prohibited conduct includes but is not limited to:
  • injuring another person physically
  • engaging in behavior that creates a reasonable fear of injury to one’s self or another person
  • engaging in behavior that would subject a reasonable person to, and does subject another individual to, extreme emotional distress
  • Brandishing, using or possessing a weapon (with or without a permit) while on college property or while attending a college-sponsored event; except where possession is a result of participation in an organized and scheduled instructional exercise for a course, or where the person is a law enforcement professional
  • intentionally damaging property
  • threatening to injure an individual (including oneself) or to
  • damage property
  • committing injurious acts motivated by, or related to, domestic violence or sexual harassment and
  • retaliating against any employee or student who, in good faith, reports a violation of this policy
  1. Consequences of Policy Violations:
    1. Employees violating this policy will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination and criminal prosecution using existing policies and procedures including Section 3 of the VCCS Policy Manual or DHRM Policy 1.60, Standards of Conduct. Additionally, employees violating this policy may be required, as a condition of continued employment, to participate in a mental health evaluation as part of a threat assessment process, and to obtain certification from the mental health evaluator that they are not a risk to themselves or others. The college may also take all necessary means of action, including interim suspension, referrals to community services boards or health care providers for evaluation or treatment, medical separation to resolve potential physical threats, and notification of family members or guardians, or both, unless such notification would prove harmful to the individual in question, consistent with state and federal law.
    2. Students violating this policy will be subject to disciplinary action including dismissal and criminal prosecution. Additionally, employees violating this policy may be required, as a condition of continued enrollment, to participate in a mental health evaluation as part of a threat assessment process, and to obtain certification from the mental health evaluator that they are not a risk to themselves or others. The college may also take all necessary means of action, including interim suspension, referrals to community services boards or health care providers for evaluation or treatment, medical separation to resolve potential physical threats, and notification of family members or guardians, or both, unless such notification would prove harmful to the individual in question, consistent with state and federal law.
    3. Visitors and third parties violating this policy will be subject to applicable, state, and federal laws, and associated regulations, and may be barred from the college at the college’s discretion.
  2. Violence Prevention Committees and Threat Assessment Team
    1. The college shall establish policies and procedures for the prevention of violence on campus, including the assessment of and intervention with individuals whose behavior poses a threat to the safety of the campus community.
    2. The college shall appoint a violence prevention committee structure on campus composed of individuals charged with education on and prevention of violence on campus. Each violence prevention committee shall include representatives from student affairs, law enforcement, human resources, mental health professional or counseling services representative, and other constituencies as needed and shall consult with legal counsel as needed. The violence prevention committee shall develop a clear statement of mission, membership, and leadership. Such statement shall be published and made available to the campus community.
    3. Each violence prevention committee shall (i) provide guidance to students, faculty, and staff regarding recognition of threatening or aberrant behavior that may represent a physical threat to the community; (ii) identify members of the campus community to whom threatening behavior should be reported; (iii) establish policies and procedures that outline circumstances under which all faculty and staff are required to report behavior that may represent a physical threat to the community, provided that such report is consistent with state and federal law; and (iv) establish policies and procedures for (a) the assessment of individuals whose behavior may present a threat, (b) appropriate means of intervention with such individuals, and (c) sufficient means of action, including interim suspension, referrals to community services boards or health care providers for evaluation or treatment, medical separation to resolve potential physical threats, and notification of family members or guardians, or both, unless such notification would prove harmful to the individual in question, consistent with state and federal law.
    4. The college shall establish a threat assessment team that includes members from student affairs, human resources,  law enforcement, a mental health professional representative, and others who have knowledge, professional expertise, or responsibilities that could assist the committee with completing its work. Each threat assessment team shall implement the assessment, intervention, and action policies set forth by the violence prevention committee pursuant to subsection 3.
    5. Each threat assessment team shall establish relationships or utilize existing relationships with mental health agencies and local and state law-enforcement agencies to expedite assessment of and intervention with individuals whose behavior may present a threat to safety. Upon a preliminary determination that an individual poses a threat of violence to self or others or exhibits significantly disruptive behavior or a need for assistance, the threat assessment team may obtain criminal history record information as provided in §§ 19.2-389 and 19.2-389.1 and health records as provided in § 32.1-127.1:03.
    6. No member of a threat assessment team shall disclose any criminal history record information or health information obtained pursuant to this section or otherwise use any record of an individual beyond the purpose for which such disclosure was made to the threat assessment team.
    7. The college expects that its threat assessment team will be able to quickly receive information about, assess, and (1) respond to incidents, (2) investigate all incidents of workplace violence, and (3) determine the appropriate response, including interim measures, and the actions necessary to address a particular situation.

If the alleged offender is a credit student, the threat assessment team will forward its recommendation to the Vice President of Academic and Student Success Services for a final decision. If the alleged offender is a non-credit student, the threat assessment team will forward the reports to the Vice President for Workforce, Economic & Community Development for a final decision. If the alleged offender is an employee or third party, the threat assessment team will forward its recommendation to the Vice President for Financial and Administrative Services for a final decision.