The California Faculty Association (CFA), which represents over 29,000 faculty, including tenure-track professors, lecturer faculty, librarians, counselors, and coaches from all 23 campuses of the California State University (CSU) System, is proud to sponsor AB 1997 (Gipson), which would require the CSU to convene a stakeholder workgroup to develop alternative options to current emergency response programs on campuses and alternative dispute resolution options to resolve employee conflicts. CFA respectfully requests your signature on this important legislation.
Existing law requires that the 23 campuses of the California State University system operate a police department, whose peace officers are sworn and certified by the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST).
However, students, faculty and staff on the campuses of the CSU system, particularly those persons of color, have reported that they do not feel safe. There are increasing reports of students, faculty and staff being treated unfairly and harassed by armed campus police. CFA and Students for Quality Education (SQE), the student advocacy group within the California Faculty Association (CFA), have been considering options to the typical response to incidents that occur on our campuses.
The CFA and SQE believe that there are a number of alternatives to campus policing that will help to address this issue:
• Reinvestment in mental health counselors and mental health crisis intervention teams.
• Provide mandatory de-escalation and unconscious bias training for all campus police and security.
• Implement trauma-informed crisis response teams at each campus of the California State University.
• Require crisis response teams on each campus to respond to non-criminal health and safety incidents, including, but not limited to, classroom disruptions, and interpersonal conflicts among campus community members.
• Ensure that crisis response teams are separate and distinct from both campus police departments and local law enforcement.
• Redirect from police departments services traditionally performed by skill-based campus professionals.
Our students, faculty and staff should feel safe as they learn, study and work on our campuses. AB 1997 will ensure that there are alternative responses to emergencies on campuses.
It is for these reasons that the CFA is proud to sponsor AB 1997 and respectfully requests your signature on this important legislation.