Dalhousie is proactively communicating to all students about the importance of community safety ahead of this weekend.
Though the university regularly communicates with students about safety and expectations for community behaviour, additional efforts are underway given that Dalhousie has been made aware of large, unsanctioned parties being planned off campus in Halifax in the coming days.
“While we have all been looking forward to getting back together this year and understand the desire to socialize with friends, we are still in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic with rising case numbers, and large student gatherings on or off campus pose a significant risk to our community, to our neighbours, and to each other,” said Provost Frank Harvey in the message shared with students.
Students are being provided with information and contacts for emergency situations, sexualized violence supports and mental health resources. The communication also emphasizes that students who break COVID protocols on gathering limits or are involved in noise infractions or alcohol-related offenses are at risk of both major fines levied by Halifax Regional Police and being sanctioned through the university’s Code of Student Conduct.
“In recent years, large gatherings on Jennings Street and other neighbouring streets have gotten out of hand and have become a safety concern for the students involved as well as for families and individuals living in the community.
If you are considering attending any of these unsanctioned events, please consider the safety of yourself, your friends and neighbours and find another way to celebrate.”
— Provost Frank Harvey, in his email to students
The email communication is just one part of a multi-tiered effort to support student and community health and safety this fall. This includes a dedicated poster/social media campaign and providing alternate on-campus programming for students. (This weekend’s Dal After Dark activities include a “rage room” and escape room, with all events expected to reach full registration.)
To further support these efforts, and to mitigate risks associated with unsanctioned parties on student and community safety, Dalhousie taps into an integrated response team and applies additional resources in close partnership with the Halifax Regional Police (HRP), HRM and emergency services. HRP and Dalhousie representatives are also going proactively door-to-door to talk to neighbours and students alike in the surrounding community to ensure expectations and supports for this weekend are made clear to everyone.
You can read more about Dalhousie’s community safety efforts in the university’s Fall Community Update.
The full email to students from Provost Frank Harvey is reprinted below:
To: Dalhousie students
From: Frank Harvey, Provost and Vice-President Academic
Date: Friday, September 24, 2021
Re: Your actions matter—large unsanctioned off-campus gatherings
We are aware that large, unsanctioned parties are being planned off campus in the coming days. While we have all been looking forward to getting back together this year and understand the desire to socialize with friends, we are still in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic with rising case numbers, and large student gatherings on or off campus pose a significant risk to our community, to our neighbours, and to each other.
In addition to major fines levied by Halifax Regional Police for breaking COVID protocols on gathering limits, noise infractions, and alcohol-related offences, students risk being sanctioned by Dalhousie through the university's Code of Student Conduct.
In recent years, large gatherings on Jennings Street and other neighbouring streets have gotten out of hand and have become a safety concern for the students involved as well as for families and individuals living in the community. If you are considering attending any of these un-sanctioned events, please consider the safety of yourself, your friends and neighbours and find another way to celebrate.
Your safety is our primary concern
It is important to note, in an effort to support the safety of our on-campus residence community, no guests are currently allowed in residence. This means no other students, other than students currently living in the respective buildings, are permitted. Any residence student who fails to follow the current COVID protocol on guests will face disciplinary actions that may include eviction.
Be an active bystander
Please watch out for each other’s safety by looking for ways to de-escalate potentially harmful situations, such as sexualized violence or alcohol/substance abuse. If you see someone in distress, and it’s safe to do so, help them by intervening. Learn more about becoming an active bystander here.
If you find yourself or anyone else in a situation that requires help, the following resources are available. Please take care of each other. We are here to help.
Off campus: Call 911
DSU Survivor Support Phone Line provides confidential and anonymous, non-judgemental, active listening and support. Call or text 902-425-1066 (12pm–12am, 7 days a week).
Student Health and Wellness offers same-day counselling services and appointments with our social worker. Book online or by calling 902-494-2171. The Student Health and Wellness Centre is open Monday-Thursday (8am–7pm); Friday (8am–6pm); Saturday (11am–4pm).
The Sexualized Violence Advisor in the Human Rights & Equity Services office can be reached at 902-494-2704 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The office is open Monday–Friday, 9am–4pm, although email and phone will be monitored 24 hours/day over the weekend.
Residence students can contact the on-duty RLM during the weekend at 902-220-9038.
Good2Talk is a free 24/7 confidential helpline for post-secondary students. Call 1-833-292-3698 or text GOOD2TALKNS to 686868.
Nova Scotia 211 provides free 24/7 confidential crisis services and resource navigation. Call or text 211.
Nova Scotia Mental Health and Addictions Crisis Line is a free 24/7 confidential helpline. Call 1-888-429-8167.
Crisis Text Line provides free 24/7 support for people in crisis. Text HOME to 686868.
For more information about staying safe in the community, please read the memo that was distributed last week.
We understand that the start of term is both an exciting and stressful time and engaging with each other is part of that experience. However, the pandemic is not over and the health and safety of Dalhousie students and members of the Dalhousie community remain our top priority.
Provost and Vice-President Academic
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