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Laws, Regulations & Policies

The following section contains a list of federal and state laws, regulations and the university's policies that are relevant to prevention, prohibition or reporting of threatening or harassing behavior. Included is a brief summary of the elements of the policy or law relevant to the prevention of violence.

A. William & Mary Policy and Regulations
  • The Campus Violence and Threat Management Policy
    • Members of the campus community must report acts and threats of violence to CAIT or other campus offices.
    • Community members are encouraged to report concerning behavior so that campus resources can be employed to assist individuals in distress.
  • Statement of Rights and Responsibilities
    • Provides that "[a]mong the basic rights [afforded to all members of the campus community] are freedom of expression and belief, freedom of association and peaceful assembly, and freedom from personal force and violence, threats of violence and personal abuse."
    • States that the university has the "right and responsibility to set and enforce reasonable standards of...personal conduct, in order to...provide for the safety of the person and property of the members of the William & Mary community, the university's physical property, and the person and property of others."
  • Medical and Emotional Emergency Protocol (for students). The protocol, which is administered by the Dean of Students Office, defines how the university responds to students who attempt suicide, make a threat or gesture of suicide, harm or attempt to harm him/herself or others, or displays severe psychological distress.
  • The Student Handbook/Code of Conduct (2023-2024 version)
    • Prohibition on "causing physical harm, threatening harm to any person, or behaving in a manner that a reasonable person would find alarming or intimidating."
    • Prohibition on "behaving in a manner that endangers the health or safety of another person." 
  • Policies regarding weapons on campus:
    • Policy applicable to employees, contractors and volunteers.  The Weapons on Campus Code of Virginia Regulations prohibits such individuals from possessing, carrying or storing a weapon on university property. The Policy includes two limited exceptions.
    • Policy applicable to students:  The Policy on - "Weapons, Firearms, Fireworks, Explosives and Combustibles"- prohibits possession of "weapons, firearms, fireworks and explosives" on campus. It also prohibits toys "or other things which reasonably appear to be weapons" or other prohibited items.
    • Regulation (Section 115 of Title 8 of the Virginia Administrative Code) applicable to campus visitors: The regulation prohibits anyone, other than a police officer or someone authorized by the university, from possessing or carrying a weapon in a university building or facility or while attending an official university event. 
  • The Faculty Handbook
    • Provides procedure by which the university investigates alleged violations of the university's policy (i.e., non-academic misconduct); and
    •   Allows Provost to suspend or reassign a faculty member as an interim measure, upon a determination that the faculty member’s continued presence threatens “immediate or likely harm to the faculty member, other members of the university community, or the educational function of the university. . . .”
  • Student Records Privacy Policy and FERPA Notification
    • Permits university officials with a legitimate educational interest to have access to student records, including health information other than records produced by the Student Health Center or Counseling Center.
    • Permits even records of the Student Health Center and Counseling Center, other than “psychotherapy notes,” to be shared with the Campus Assessment and Intervention Team. 
  • Clery Act Compliancy - Requires Resident Assistants and employees designated as Campus Security Authorities to report allegations or reports of certain crimes occurring on campus to the William & Mary Police.
B. Federal Laws and Regulations
  • Family Education Records Privacy Act (FERPA). See Student Records Privacy Policy, above.
  • Clery Act requires disclosure of campus security policy and campus crime statistics; requires postsecondary institutions to provide timely warning of crimes that represent a threat to the safety of students and employee. See Clery Act Reporting Procedure, above.
C. Virginia Laws
  • Threat Assessment (§ 23.1-805) 
    • Requires public colleges or universities to have policies and procedures for prevention of violence on campus, including assessment and intervention with individuals whose behavior poses a threat to the safety of the campus community.
    • Requires public universities to establish a violence prevention committee and a threat assessment team.
  • Parent Notification (§ 23-9.2:3) 
    • Requires every public institution of higher education in Virginia to establish policies and procedures requiring parental notification when dependent students experience a psychiatric emergency and receives mental health treatment at the institution's student health or counseling center.
  • Department of Human Resource Management Policies
    • DHRM Policy Number: 1.80 – Workplace Violence. Prohibited conduct includes:
      • injuring another person physically;
      • engaging in behavior that creates a reasonable fear of injury to another person;
      • engaging in behavior that subjects another individual to extreme emotional distress;
      • possessing, brandishing or using a weapon that is not required by the individual's position while on state premises or engaged in state business;
      • intentionally damaging property;
      • threatening to injure an individual or to damage property;
      • committing injurious acts motivated by, or related to, domestic violence or sexual harassment; and
      • retaliating against any employee who, in good faith, reports a violation of this policy.