Emergency Messaging System
An emergency alert will be issued when leadership determines there is a danger or threat to the campus community. That decision can be made by the president, provost, vice-president for student affairs, chief of police or any of their designees. The Office of Public Affairs will determine the method of communication and issue the emergency alert.
The Emergency Messaging System employs several communication methods in order to notify the university community of emerging situations. Emergency alerts can be issued via campus-wide emails, mobile text and voice messages, emergency postings on the homepage of the university’s website site, vial official Loyola Facebook and Twitter announcements, campus phone voicemail recordings, and Loyola’s emergency hotline recording, 504-865-2186, or toll-free, 1-888-94LOYNO.
i.) Confirm there is a significant emergency:
ii.) Determine the appropriate segment or segments of the campus community to receive notification:
Based on the threat or emergency and who it will affect, the Office of Public Affairs will determine the appropriate audience for notification, method of communication and will issue the emergency alert. Among those to be considered for communication in an emergency situation are:
Parents of Students
Law Enforcement Agencies
Board of Trustees
iii.) Determine the content of the notification:
The Office of Public Affairs will determine the appropriate content for the emergency notification based on the specific situation, the confirmed information provided by key stakeholders, and will incorporate pre-approved messages if necessary. iv.) Initiate the notification system:
Protocol for Initiating Emergency Messaging System
For Hurricane Alerts:
1. When a storm enters the Gulf of Mexico, the Emergency Management Team meets/discusses and potential threat and commences emergency planning procedures.
2. When New Orleans is placed within the storm’s cone of uncertainty, or if a watch or warning is posted for the area, Public Affairs will issue and emergency website posting and send out a campus-wide email notifying the LU community of the potential threat.
3. When it has been determined that New Orleans will be directly affected by the storm, Public Affairs will issue an emergency website posting and send out a campus-wide email notifying the LU community of the situation and will advise them to begin implementing their personal emergency plans. If the decision to evacuate has been made by LU administration, then Public Affairs will issue that statement via all communication vehicles.
For an Immediate Threat on Campus:
1. LUPD is notified of emergency situation.
2. LUPD responds to incident to verify/assess the situation.
3. LUPD determines if there is a threat to campus. If so, LUPD calls LU President and Public Affairs to provide all known details about the situation.
4. Public Affairs initiates communication response:
Post emergency message on website homepage
Draft and emergency voice/text message and send it to IT
Draft an emergency hotline message and send to IT
Draft email message for LU campus community
Draft Twitter message and send out
Draft status update on official Loyola University Facebook page
5. Contact IT to have them distribute campus-wide email and emergency text/voice messages, and record emergency hotline message.
6. Public Affairs sends voicemail and text alert to Core Team to notify them of the incident and to provide them directions for assembling the Emergency Management Team.
7. Public Affairs drafts media alert and disseminates to media via email.
For Suspension of Operations (i.e. Campus Closing)
1. Leadership determines the campus will suspend operations.
2. Public Affairs is notified of the suspension, the reason for it, and the details regarding which personnel will still need to report for work.
3. Public Affairs sends out notification via text, voicemail and website communications.
4. Public Affairs notifies IT to sent out a campus-wide email and hotline recording.
5. Public Affairs notifies media of campus closing via email press release.
The Crisis Communication Plan for Loyola University New Orleans deals specifically with emergency communications and coincides with the university’s various safety and emergency plans. The President of Loyola University and/or the Director of Public Affairs and External Relations will activate this plan, if necessary, but the entire university community should be aware of the plan and the roles they play in executing it. If any member of the Loyola community believes a crisis is pending or is under way, he/she should report it immediately to the President, Public Affairs or Loyola Police. The university will follow these guidelines without delay to respond to any crisis or emergency, as well as to inform its publics about the crisis, unless issuing a notification will, in the professional judgment of responsible authorities, compromise efforts to assist a victim or to contain, respond to, or otherwise mitigate the emergency.
Director of University Police
Director of Pubic Affairs and External Relations
Vice Provost for Information Technology
Testing the emergency response and evacuation:
Loyola maintains an extensive set of emergency response plans and systems. The overall Emergency Management Plan provides for continuous improvement by conduction training, exercises, reviews and updates annually. Loyola is in the process of enhancing its emergency management planning and response through coordination with local authorities and other entities. Large-scale testing exercises for response plans and resource management will be conducted with these entities on a regional basis. Specific testing of evacuation systems for Loyola facilities is conducted annually for all buildings except for residences, which conduct two tests per year. Each Building Coordinator is mandated to conduct tests that are coordinated with University Police in advance. Each test is documented by the appropriate Building Coordinator, who files a report with University police. Annual training is conducted by University Police for the Building Coordinators; procedures are publicized at the time and all emergency procedures are always available on Loyola’s web site.