Harassment

Support services at Saint Francis University

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    Harassment

    Annoying or harassing phone calls, emails, texts or comments on social network websites are a common problem on college campuses. They are many times viewed as mere pranks. State Law considers such activity as Harassment by Communications or Address, a Third Degree Misdemeanor offense.
    The Pennsylvania Crimes Code defines the following to be Harassment by Communications :

    • Making phone calls without a legitimate purpose.
    • Repeatedly making anonymous phone calls.
    • Repeatedly phoning at extremely inconvenient hours.
    • Repeatedly phoning using offensive, course, or obscene language.

    Harassment by Communications is punishable by imprisonment of up to one (1) year and a fine up to $2500.
    If you are receiving annoying or harassing phone calls, contact the University Police Department. An officer will meet with you to discuss the situation and to determine the best course of action to be taken. You will be asked to keep a log of your calls, description of the caller's voice, background noises, etc. Depending on the situation, the University Police, with the assistance of Telecommunications may be able to determine the origin of the calls.
    The following suggestions are given for dealing with harassing call:

    • Never engage the caller in conversation. The key to handling the calls is not to react to them. Reacting could encourage the caller. Never answer personal questions or give out information to an unknown caller.
    • Hang up when you realize the call is intended to harass you.
    • Keep track of the date and time of the calls to determine the pattern. This can help you narrow the possible suspects. We have provided a log to help you chart the calls.
    • Unplug your phone if necessary.
    • Contact the University Police at extension 3360.

    If you receive threatening or obscene calls, contact the University Police Department immediately, even if you have already spoken to an officer. Most harassing calls do not present a physical threat to the victim's safety. The caller often knows the victim. Occasionally, the caller simply contacts the victim randomly.

    For more information, read out Nondiscrimination & No Harassment Policy

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