Policy 1033 - Emergency Text and Voice Messaging

Section: Operating/Administrative
Policy Number: 1033
Responsible Office: Public Safety
Effective Date: 9/5/07
Revised: 2/11/15


This policy applies to the University Community, including all administrators, staff, faculty and students on our New York campuses.


The safety of all people on St. John’s campuses remains the University’s highest priority. The University’s Text and Voice Messaging System will alert members of the University community to emergencies affecting one or more of our campuses. Individuals must either register or opt out of the free service via the University Information System’s (UIS) secure site. Once registered, you will receive text and voice messages to your cell phone or off-campus wired telephone if and when emergencies occur on any of our U.S. campuses. These communications will alert you to the situation and direct you as to what action to take to secure your safety.

While there are a number of other information sources available for messages on the status of events unfolding (St. John’s Web site at https://www.stjohns.edu; University Emergency Bulletins on (718) 990-2000, voice broadcast and email messages), the text messaging system is the most effective immediate alert system available to members of the University community.
Messages that are conveyed through these communication systems will be specific to the particular situation. However, there are two common forms of safety instruction: “Stay in Place” or “Evacuate.”

  • In the event of a Stay-in-Place order:
    • Stay calm….do not panic
    • Safely stop work
    • If safe, close office or classroom windows, but do not lock them unless there is a direct threat
    • Move to the safest place within your work area
    • When necessary, stay away from glass doors and windows
    • Do not leave the building or work area until instructed to do so by the proper authorities.
    • Do not remain in hallways or stairwells, but proceed to a safe room within the building.
  • In the event of an Evacuation order:
    • Stay calm…do not rush or panic
    • Safely stop work
    • Gather personal belongings if it is safe to do so
    • If safe, close office or classroom doors and windows while evacuating, but do not lock them
    • Use the closest safe stairs and proceed to the nearest exit---Do not use the elevator
    • Follow the instructions of Public Safety Officers and Emergency Evacuation Volunteers (EEVs) who will direct you to an assembly area.
    • Wait for instructions from Public Safety or emergency responders
    • Do not re-enter the building or work area until instructed to do so by the proper authorities.

St. John’s is extremely fortunate to have such a high caliber of personnel in the field of Emergency Preparedness working in Public Safety, and the incredible resources of the NYPD, but it is also critical that each of us take responsibility for ensuring that we are aware of what to do in an emergency situation. Remember, you must register in order to receive emergency text and voice messages. To do so, log into SignOn.stjohns.edu and click on the UIS icon, then from the Personal Information menu, select: “Update Emergency Notification Information."

For more information about safety at St. John’s, visit the web at https://www.stjohns.edu/life-st-johns/public-safety.

St. John's University, New York
Human Resources Policy Manual