Emergency and Crisis Communications

Internal Notification click to download (pdf)

An emergency or crisis is any event, sudden, unexpected or emergent (evolves over time), that disrupts the normal operations of the institution or its educational mission, and threatens the well-being of personnel, property, financial resources, and/or reputation of the institution. Emergencies can range from fairly routine (preparing for snow closure) to extreme crisis such as a tornado touching down on campus. 

Webster University embraces these industry best practice emergency and crisis management models:

  1. Incident Command System (ICS) or Incident Management System (IMS). This is the basis for the National Incident Management System (NIMS), a national system that all emergency organizations in the U.S. are required to adopt and use. See Overview.
  2. U.S. Department of Education's Action Guide for Emergency Management at Institutions of Higher Education.

In an emergency and crisis event, the University will take a proactive approach to managing communications that is consistent with its mission, vision and core values.

This communications management approach will help to anchor Webster's audiences during times of emergency and crisis and will help to build respect, dispel rumors, and restore order and confidence during times of uncertainty. The Department of Public Safety (after conferring with the Provost) will initiate all emergency communication procedures by calling the Chief Communications Officer (CCO) or designee when a qualifying incident occurs in such a manner that it needs to be escalated to communication beyond a localized setting. The CCO will employ the use of such emergency communications mechanisms as text messaging, email, web site, IP phone live announcements and voicemails and alerting the local media.