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New Title 5 Regulations Related to Public Safety
On October 25, 2022, the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges released revisions to Title 5 of the California Code of Regulations related to Campus Climate and Public Safety to the Secretary of State. These revised regulations, found in Sections 59700 through 59704, will take effect on November 24, 2022. These regulations apply to all public safety services and public safety personnel, whether provided by district employees, or by contract with private third parties or other public agencies.
This bulletin reviews and explains the changes to these regulations, so campus security offices and police departments may update their public safety practices accordingly.
I. Policing Philosophy
The regulations require application of community-based policing and evidence-based policing models. Community-based policing is defined as a policing philosophy that involves three principal elements: (1) Collaborative partnerships between police and those they serve to develop solutions to problems and increase trust in police; (2) organizational transformation to align management, structure, personnel, and data systems to support partnerships and proactive problem solving; and (3) proactive engagement and systematic examination of problems to develop and evaluate effective responses.
To support the development of community policing practices, district governing boards will be mandated to:
(1) require campus police and security officers to participate in regular training related to the conduct and methods of community policing, anti-bias, cultural responsibility, conflict avoidance, and de-escalation;
(2) provide campus police and security officers routine mental health services, and prompt referral to crisis counseling following any critical incident;
(3) require in the hiring, retention, and promotion of campus police and security officers a demonstrated commitment to policing with a “guardian” rather than a “warrior” mindset;
(4) prohibit district auxiliary organizations from purchasing military equipment, unless authorized by the district governing board following standards required by law for the purchase of equipment for police agencies made with public funds; and
(5) require campus police and security officers to attend and participate in campus activities not involving a “police response” or other formal public safety-related activities, such as participating in student events when invited, in town halls, convocations, and other similar events where informal or social interactions with other campus stakeholders is possible.
Evidence-based policing is defined as “an approach to the development of effective policing tactics that involves ongoing evaluation of police agencies, units, and officers to connect the best available research to the implementation of public safety guidelines and practices to improve outcomes and to allow public safety agencies to move beyond reactive, response-driven approaches.” To support the development of evidence-based practices, the regulations state that campus public safety services shall:
(1) record policing data metrics, including key performance indicators;
(2) track data related to traffic stops and other officer-initiated contacts; and
(3) conduct stakeholder climate surveys focused on campus public safety services.
To further the development of evidence-based practices, Boards of Trustees must implement a process to encourage individuals who have interacted with campus public safety personnel to submit a response related to the interaction to the district. The process shall:
(1) solicit responses regarding the individual’s perception of the interaction and district’s public safety practices;
(2) provide to the advisory board (described below) an aggregated summary or otherwise anonymized version of the responses received;
(3) allow for the anonymous submission of responses;
(4) prohibit any retaliation against a responder, including a prohibition against the use of a response in any disciplinary proceeding against the responder; and
(5) provide an accessible method for all individuals to provide responses.
The data gathered in this process may not be used for officer discipline, or maintained in any officer’s personnel file.
II. Governance Requirements
The revised regulations require that district governing board policies related to campus public safety services must align to the purposes stated above, and include all of the following elements:
- A “Public Safety Compact” developed with community college stakeholders, including campus police and security officers, that establishes the district’s requirements for the delivery of public-safety related services on campus. This includes the roles and responsibilities of administrators, faculty, campus police and security officers, mental health and social services workers, crisis counselors, community non-profits, and other related service providers in responding to the public safety needs of the campus.
- A public safety advisory committee, composed of campus stakeholder representatives, to make recommendations to the district board of trustees related to district policies governing campus public safety services. Districts are required to engage in active efforts to recruit advisory committee members from historically underserved communities. Advisory committee recommendations may relate to budgets and fund allocations, governance, and public safety policies and practices related to body and dash cameras, classroom response practices, complaints, investigations, crisis response, detention, discipline, firearms, handcuffing, promotion, recruitment and hiring, restorative justice programs, retention, training, uniforms and attire, use of force, welfare checks, and other related subjects deemed appropriate by the governing board or the advisory committee.
- A requirement that public safety personnel offer their contact information to individuals who are stopped or otherwise subject to a police or security officer-initiated interaction, except where doing so would pose a safety risk; and
- The evidence-based policing response gathering process described above.
III. Hiring & Training
Further, the revised regulations require that public safety services adhere to principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility, (“DEIA”) and “in particular advance access to education, educational equity, and opportunities for student success by creating safe, secure, peaceful, and inclusive campus environments in which all persons may fully develop their individual potential without fear or undue risk of physical or emotional harm.” The regulations require that District recruiting materials must prominently indicate that applicants for a campus public safety personnel (“CPSP”) position will be required to demonstrate a commitment to DEIA principles. Additionally, the evaluation of CPSP during their employment now includes consideration of the employee’s commitment to these principles and to their contributions to student success.
The new regulations expressly state that CPSP are subject to the equal employment opportunity and evaluation requirements in Title 5. Applicants who obtain a degree in “modern policing” from a California community college, which is currently under development and may become available in 2025 or later, shall receive a hiring preference over other similarly-qualified applicants for a position as a campus police officer.
Districts are prohibited from hiring as a campus police officer an individual with any sustained finding related to moral turpitude, harassment, discrimination, retaliation, abuse of authority or power, excessive use of force, or other misconduct incompatible with the role of a campus police officer. Districts must review records related to the current or prior employment to the full extent authorized by law.
Further, campus police and security officers will be required to receive community college-specific training as required by the law, and as made available by the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST). Additionally, districts shall provide campus climate and public safety trainings or materials from the Chancellor’s Office to its public safety personnel.
IV. Impact on State Apportionment
The Title 5 revisions also added a new section (Section 51028), which makes the Campus Climate and Public Safety provisions a minimum condition community college districts must satisfy in order to maintain state aid. Fortunately for districts, the regulation also states that when considering an enforcement action to address a district’s failure to meet a campus climate and public safety minimum condition, the Chancellor shall give due consideration to the time required for faithful implementation of the public safety regulations, and the resources available to the district.
In light of these sweeping changes, districts should review their campus security or police manuals and practices to assess their compliance with the newly enacted provisions. LCW’s public education and public safety experts can assist with these reviews and revisions.