VCU announces new safety model, civilian oversight committee for campus police

VCU announces new safety model, civilian oversight committee for campus police
VCU Police cars barricade a road near W. Cary Street.

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - VCU is altering their new public safety model and shifting their focus from policing to fostering “safety and well-being” on the university’s campuses.

“Our mission calls on us to address very real issues such as law enforcement’s interactions with ethnic, racial, gender and sexual minority communities, in particular those intersecting with African American communities,” a release stated on June 16.

VCU will utilize targeted reforms and community involvement in the new model. This includes a police oversight committee and a website for body cam footage reviews and complaints.

  • A civilian oversight committee will assist the new model’s development and inform university decisions. Suggestions on how to seat this committee can be sent through this form or by email to safetymodel@vcu.edu. Similar to other university employees, VCU Police are under review by VCU Human Resources, who would investigate and make recommendations on disciplinary actions.
  • VCU Police will receive additional training for crisis intervention, de-escalation and fair policing practices. The department will participate in the One Mind Campaign to improve response to those with mental illnesses.
  • An online public safety dashboard will include officer complaints, department use of force and random body camera footage for review.

The university is seeking community feedback on VCU Police, the civilian advisory committee and other new initiatives. You can share your ideas at go.vcu.edu/safetymodel or by emailing safetymodel@vcu.edu.

“We will update you on our progress this summer and regularly as we move forward, and we will continue to seek your input as we work on this new model of wellness and safety for everyone on our campuses,” stated the release that was signed by VCU and VCU Health President Michael Rao and 13 others.

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