We take everyone’s safety and security on campus very seriously, and care about our students and staff at all times. This article contains some useful guidance both on how you can personally contribute to safer public spaces, reduce personal risk, and access support services and advice.
In this article:
- How you can personally contribute to safer public spaces
- Personal safety on & off campus
- Our campuses:
- Support services
How you can personally contribute to safer public spaces
All of us can play our part in making public spaces and streets safer. When you are out after dark, or the streets around you are quiet, please consider the following:
- Keep your distance. For example, rather than coming up behind someone, consider crossing the road. Someone walking ahead of you may perceive you to be a threat, even if that’s not what you intend.
- If you can’t cross the road, avoid coming up behind someone quickly or quietly. For example, call out ‘runner passing on your right’; make a phone call, or pretend to make one, to a family member or friend. Silence can be scary.
- Give other people space – if you’re passing someone else on a footpath or pavement, give as much space as possible to avoid crowding them, and move into single file if you’re walking with someone else.
- Avoid making eye contact/staring, or making personal comments to or about someone you don’t know. Be an Active Bystander –
- If you see someone on their own who appears to be in distress, don’t ignore it – if safe to do so and without putting yourself in any danger, ask the person if they need any help or call the police on 999 telling them where you are and what you can see.
- If you sense someone is in a situation that’s making them uncomfortable, it can be more helpful to speak to the other party, rather than to the person who’s on the receiving end of their unwanted attention, as long as it is safe to do so. For example, asking for directions or the time can help defuse a difficult situation.
- If you’re on campus alert the KCL security teams on 020 7848 8661 ext. 88661
- Don’t be put off approaching someone who may need assistance, but think about how best to communicate reassurance rather than increase their concerns.
- Sign up to the UN Women UK’s campaign for safe public spaces to learn more. Their research shows that over 70% of women in the UK have experienced sexual harassment in public, and all of us can contribute to ensuring that public spaces are safer.
Personal safety on & off campus
We should all be able to feel safe and secure as we go about our daily lives. The Suzy Lamplugh Trust offers some practical advice on personal safety, for students, at work and at home. For example, it includes details of a free personal safety phone app, compatible with Android and IOS devices.
If you feel that you are being followed or are approached by someone who makes you feel uncomfortable call the police immediately on 999 and try to make your way to the nearest visible location where there are other people who can assist (e.g. a shop, a security officer, ticket attendant at a train station).
If you are on a KCL campus, Residence or walking through/near campus public spaces and have immediate concerns for your personal safety, head to our nearest 24/7 King’s security reception or call the 24/7 security number on 020 7848 8661 (ext. 88661) – we will help you or wait with you until the police arrive. Additionally, on Guy’s Campus, there are two help points where you can call for assistance.
Student ID – make sure you are wearing your ID on campus. However you may wish to consider taking your ID off when you leave campus.
Our campuses: Keeping your belongings secure
Studying alongside a large community at King’s will mean sharing a wide range of public facilities on campus, such as the library, or a classroom.
So that you can always keep your belongings secure, remember to:
- Not leave your belongings unattended when using a shared space.
- Keep items of value out of sight of others using the space.
- Try not to leave your items in any of the Libraries on campus unattended for longer than 30 minutes. Belongings can be removed by Library Staff to free up study space for other students.
- Only store your bicycle at one of the dedicated storage facilities on campus and secure this with a padlock. All 5 of our campuses have specific guidance on how to safely secure your bike.
- Bicycles can also be security marked and registered at BikeRegister.
To help keep students safe, residences all over campus are closely monitored by Closed-Circuit Television Camera’s (CCTV). Students living on campus can help keep each other safe by:
- Reporting suspicious activity to their reception in their residence in the first instance. For more information on how to contact each reception, take a look at the full list of Residences at King's.
- Contacting a Residence Welfare Lead if you have any issues with living with your flatmates.
- Visiting or getting in touch with the Security Team to report an out-of-hours maintenance issue or any security concerns on campus. Each campus has its own office and dedicated security team.
- Reporting an emergency to the Police if this is out of hours and Residence can't provide assistance.
- Filling in a Student of Concern form, if you are concerned about the welfare of another student.
- Approaching the Students' Union's independent advice service, KCLSU Advice for free, confidential and impartial advice for anything that may have affected your studies.
Health & Safety services provide information on all the ways we work to protect your safety, and how you can look after yourself and your friends. You can also self-enrol on a Health and Safety Student Induction KEATS module, which covers the different aspects of campus health and safety.
Important to know:
Do not let others follow you into buildings without the other person using their own KCL card to gain entry.
If you witness someone entering a King's property who appears to have deliberately avoided using their KCL card, please contact your security team on campus or residency staff in the first instance.
If you’re feeling concerned and anxious, we do encourage you to speak to someone, a friend or family member or one of our support services available to you.
Please refer to our support options in our article Top tips on managing your mental health & wellbeing.