Building Community Together
University and community promote safe and respectful behaviour
October 16, 2023
Queen’s University and its campus and community partners are taking proactive steps to encourage safe and respectful behaviour and discourage large unsanctioned gatherings in the University District this fall.
The university is working closely with student representatives and partners, including the City of Kingston, Kingston Police, Frontenac Paramedics, Kingston Fire and Rescue, Utilities Kingston, and Kingston Health Sciences Centre, to address the potential risks of large unsanctioned student gatherings.
A series of social media campaigns, communications, events, and door-to-door visits to hundreds of students and residents in the University District have been launched in a collective effort to promote respectful behaviours and to raise awareness of the risks of large gatherings. Students may have to appear in court, and/or may be fined, if they are found contravening provincial and municipal laws and bylaws related to nuisance parties, and open liquor.
The university is also coordinating supports such as food trucks, snacks and water, alcohol harm reduction education, alternate programming and events, and expanded access to the Campus Observation Room, the on-campus non-medical detox service for students who have had too much to drink.
"The university and our community partners have been working together to ensure students understand the safety risks and disruptions to the community that large, unsanctioned street gatherings cause,” says Matthew Evans, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic). “We know students will get together and socialize, but we strongly encourage everyone to be smart, stay safe, and make choices that do not put themselves and others at risk, and importantly, do not put additional strain on Kingston’s health-care system.”
A few highlights of the actions being taken throughout this month include:
Social media campaign
A social media campaign encouraging safe celebrations will reach students through TikTok, Snapchat Instagram, and Facebook. This campaign will communicate important messages related to safe and respectful behaviour – with reminders to stay off roofs, to not block roadways, avoid open alcohol in public, and reminders of the University District Safety Initiative (UDSI). The campaign also includes alcohol harm reduction and sexual violence prevention content.
Useful information, such as the Health Resources Map, will also be shared to direct students to the appropriate place or service if they need medical assistance.
University District neighbourhood door knocking and enforcement
University staff, Kingston Bylaw, and the Police Liaison Team are going door-to-door in the University District to distribute a hand-out containing details of the UDSI, potential fines, including Open Alcohol fines, and safety and harm reduction information. The UDSI is in effect from Oct. 14 at 12:00 a.m. through Nov. 1 at 12:00 a.m. Students can also access all information and resources to promote safe off-campus gatherings on the Student Community Relations’ Party Smart, Party Safe Hub.
The City of Kingston has continued using Administrative Monetary Penalties, in addition to the Provincial Offences Act, for most offences under the UDSI and Nuisance Party bylaws. Penalties can range from $50 to $2,000 depending on the offence. Those individuals who are found to have violated local bylaws may also be sanctioned under the Queen’s University Student Code of Conduct.
The Alma Mater Society will reach out to students directly. Their efforts include:
Save our paws - media campaign featuring student and staff dogs to encourage people to use cans instead of glass containers.
Know Your Rights – a campaign educating students on the University District Safety Initiative
Bylaw reminders on social media – reminding students of City of Kingston bylaws.
Food truck – A food truck will be open on campus.
Neighbourhood cleanup – An AMS-led initiative to pick up any litter around the University District on Sunday, Oct. 22, 2023.
Health Promotion’s Peer Health Educator (PHE) Substance Use Team is coordinating Party-Goer and Party-Thrower Kit giveaway events, and collaborating with the COR peer team on in-residence and cross-campus alcohol harm reduction education outreach and activities.
Food in the University District
A “Big Breakfast” brunch will be served in campus dining halls on Oct. 15, 29 and 30 (10 a.m. -1:30 p.m.). The Queen’s Centre locations of Pizza Pizza, Tim Horton's and Booster Juice, and the Mitchell Hall Starbucks remain open on weekends. A food truck will be located at the Queen's Centre on Earl Street, and free water and Gatorade will be handed out on Oct. 21.
Supervised recovery from intoxication on campus
The Campus Observation Room, the on-campus, non-medical detox service overseen by Student Wellness Services-trained student volunteers and Kingston Health Sciences Centre professional staff will be open extended hours over the weekend of Oct 20-22.
Residence guest policy
Residences will be closed to guests on the weekends of Oct. 21-22 and Oct. 29-30. Alternative events are planned both weekends.
Athletics and Recreation events
- Oct. 19 – 6:30 p.m. – Tricolour Classic charity basketball game between faculties of Engineering and Commerce. All proceeds will go towards the Canadian Cancer Society (Leon’s Centre).
- Oct. 20 – 21– Men’s and women’s basketball Tindall Invitational Tournament (ARC gym)
- Oct 20 – 7:30 p.m. – Men’s lacrosse vs. Trent University (Miklas-McCarney Field)
- Oct. 21, 1 p.m. – Men’s football vs. University of Ottawa (Richardson Stadium)
- Oct. 21. 4 p.m. – Men’s rugby vs. McMaster University (Nixon Field)