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Concerning Behaviour Assessment and Intervention Team (CBAIT) Vice-Chancellor's Directive

Abstract

This Directive establishes Concerning Behaviour Assessment and Intervention Team (CBAIT), which will assess and coordinate the response to reports of concerning behaviour that may indicate emerging risk of harm to persons in the UTS community. This Directive enhances existing UTS policies and directives.

The Concerning Behaviour Assessment and Intervention Team (CBAIT) Vice-Chancellor's Directive is also available as a PDF document.

Dates Directive approved 23/02/2012
Directive takes effect 05/04/2012
Policy is due for review (up to five years) 02/2017
Directive amendment approved 11/12/2014
Directive amendment takes effect 05/02/2015
Approved by Vice-Chancellor
Latest amendment: Director, Governance Support Unit (see change history for details)
Implementation Officer Director, Student Services and CBAIT
Relevant to All staff, students, contractors and visitors to the University, including off-site participants in University activities and events
Related documents
Legislation
File number UR11/1401
Superseded documents None

Contents

1. Purpose

This Directive establishes a Concerning Behaviour Assessment and Intervention Team (CBAIT) at UTS, which will gather information related to concerning behaviour, make initial assessments regarding threat level, determine the need for further assessment or intervention and cooperate to organise a response that will mitigate the risk of harm to persons at UTS. This Directive enhances existing UTS policies and directives.

2. Scope

This Directive applies to all students, staff, contractors and others who visit or utilise the University's campus and/or facilities, or engage in activities and events sponsored by the University regardless of the location. It applies to information obtained that indicates targeted violence may be being planned with an intent of harming persons at UTS.

Emergency situations are not covered by this Directive. Members of the University community should report emergency situations involving behaviour that appears to pose a clear and immediate threat to UTS Security immediately by dialling 6 from a campus phone or 1800 249 559.

This Directive does not address formal action taken under misconduct rules. Such action may, however, be taken against persons whose behaviour is addressed under this Directive according to the University's employee or student misconduct policies, procedures and agreements.

It is understood that persons lodging a report do so in good faith. However, the making of a false or misleading report under this Directive may be considered misconduct and may result in disciplinary action under the University's student misconduct or employee disciplinary procedures.

3. Definitions

CBAIT:
Concerning Behaviour Assessment and Intervention Team.
Concerning behaviour
may include, but is not limited to:
  • aggressive or irrational behaviour through words and/or actions
  • inability to control anger, confrontational or disturbing words or actions
  • unusual overreaction to normal circumstances
  • any threat or act of violence
  • damage to property
  • expression of suicidal acts
  • any other action word or behaviour that one may reasonably believe could lead to violence
  • threatening statements, displays, photos or other publications in electronic format or communication
  • physical actions short of actual contact/injury (ie moving closer aggressively, waving arms or fists, yelling in an aggressive or threatening manner)
  • general, specific, or implicit threats, whether or not made in a 'joking' manner (ie 'you better watch your back', 'I'll get you', or 'you'll be sorry') including the use of any electronic means of communication
  • stalking behaviour
  • vague statements regarding suicide or self-inflicted injury, violent thoughts or violent intentions
  • writing stories, poems, or essays or producing images that express or otherwise indicate a potentially dangerous fascination or preoccupation with violence to self or to others
  • any behaviour generating fear of violence.
Concerning behaviour that should be referred to Head, Counselling may include, but is not limited to: irregular emotional behaviour, unusual nervousness, tension or anxiety, expression of suicidal thoughts or feelings, talk of suicide or self-inflicted injury, or a marked deterioration in a person's behaviour, academic or workplace performance, appearance or conduct.
Emergency situations:
emergency situations involve behaviour that appear to pose a clear and immediate threat. In such situations, call UTS Security immediately by dialling 6 from a campus phone or 1800 249 559.
HCR-20:
a tool for assessing concerning behaviour.
Person/s:
student, staff, contractors and others.

4. Directive principles

The University, staff, students, contractors and others have work health and safety responsibilities.

The University will not tolerate behaviours that may cause harm to others or that violate relevant legislation and UTS directives, policies and guidelines.

All persons are strongly encouraged to be aware of their surroundings and to be alert for behaviour that may present a concern. Students, staff and contractors should be advised of relevant requirements of this Directive so that they are encouraged to immediately report any situation that involves concerning behaviour as defined herein.

5. Directive statement

The CBAIT is committed to improving University community safety by applying a thoughtful approach to the prevention, identification, assessment, intervention and management of persons with concerning behaviour. This may be achieved by:

  1. developing strategies and processes that will strengthen the University's capacity to identify high-risk situations or individuals
  2. enhancing early intervention and management of risk to the campus community
  3. assisting in the post-incident recovery of staff and students if a critical incident does occur.

CBAIT shall guide the process from assessment to managing interventions with the objective of reducing identified risk. CBAIT will utilise available resources and additional members as appropriate to assist it in gathering information about persons whose behaviour is of concern. This may include consulting with others in carrying out its assessment function.

The creation of CBAIT will not guarantee prevention of critical incidents and there will still be potential for identified risks to be handled less than optimally. However, it is expected that the formation and functioning of the proposed team will contribute to a safer campus and will improve perceptions of student, staff and others that their concerns can be addressed.

6. CBAIT's role

6.1 Inquiry and investigation

Upon receiving a report, CBAIT will focus upon determining whether or not the behaviour is indicative of a developing threat to safety. CBAIT may gather additional information and facts from all available sources including by accessing relevant records. These inquiries may be made by designated members of CBAIT individually or may be carried out by CBAIT acting as a convened group.

6.2 Assessment and management

Based on information gathered by CBAIT, it shall make assessment of the reported behaviour and recommend and coordinate or delegate interventions, threat management plans, active monitoring plans and other case management strategies.

In order to provide an immediate response, matters may be responded to by CBAIT members individually or collectively, subsequently preparing a report to be submitted at the next CBAIT meeting.

7. CBAIT membership

  • Director, Student Services (Chair)
  • Director, UTS Legal Services (Deputy Chair)
  • Head, UTS Counselling Service
  • Manager, UTS Security
  • Senior Advisor, Student Misconduct and Appeals
  • Deputy Director, Student Administration Unit (Service Centres)
  • HR Partnership Manager (nominated by Director, Human Resources)

Additional members or alternates may be included as required by the specific circumstances of a particular situation.

8. Confidentiality and privacy

All reports will be handled in a confidential manner whenever possible. CBAIT will take reasonable steps to maintain the privacy of those involved.

CBAIT will develop a repository for information that satisfies privacy legislation, has secure access controlled through a rigorous procedure and allows authorised staff to access the information required to in risk management.

9. CBAIT meetings

CBAIT will determine the frequency of meetings, procedure and quorum.

10. CBAIT reports

CBAIT will provide bi-annual reports to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education and Students).

11. Education and training

University community

For this program to be effective, it requires the University community to be aware of the importance of reporting concerning behaviours through normal channels.

CBAIT will develop a communication strategy to regularly inform the University community of responsibilities and mechanisms for reporting concerning behaviour.

CBAIT training

Members and alternates of CBAIT will receive ongoing training and professional development opportunities. For example, members will receive certified threat assessment training using the HCR-20 to enable evidence-based justification of information sharing and decisions affecting student, staff and others.

12. Responsibilities

Accountable Officer: Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education and Students)

Implementation Officer: Director, Student Services and CBAIT

7. Acknowledgments

UTS wishes to thank the University of Alabama in Huntsville for the use of some aspects of their Behavioural Evaluation and Threat Assessment Policy in this Directive.

8. Version control and change history

Effective date Version Approved by (date) Amendment
05/04/2012 1.0 Vice-Chancellor (23/02/2012) New directive
05/02/2015 1.1 Director, Governance Support Unit (GSU) (11/12/2014) Changes (approved under Delegation 3.17) to implement 2014 Senior Executive restructure.