What is the Clery Act?
In April 1986, Jeanne Clery’s life ended tragically when another student sexually assaulted and murdered her in her residence hall room. Alarmed at the lack of transparency around crime and violence on college campuses, Jeanne’s parents committed themselves to create enduring change. In 1990, Congress approved the Crime Awareness and Campus Security Act. Later renamed in Jeanne’s memory, the Jeanne Clery Act took effect in 1991.
The Clery Act requires all institutions of higher education that participate in the federal student financial aid program to disclose information about crime on their campuses and in the surrounding communities. The Clery Act affects virtually all public and private universities in the United States and is enforced by the U.S. Department of Education. Campuses that fail to comply with the act face penalties ranging from fines to suspension of federal financial aid.
Clery Act Requirements
The U.S. Department of education authors a handbook for institutions required to comply with the Clery Act. The Handbook for Campus Safety and Security Reporting provides procedures, examples, and references for compliance with the Clery Act.
A general summary of requirements is as follows:
- Collect, classify, and count crime reports and statistics related to crime on or near campus. Info on crimes and geographic classifications can be found by following the menu links on the right.
- Issue timely warnings and campus alerts for Clery crimes that represent an ongoing threat to the safety of students or employees, or emergency notifications upon confirmation of a significant emergency or dangerous situation involving an immediate threat to the health or safety of students or employees.
- Publish an annual security report containing safety and security-related policy statements and criminal statistics and distribute it to all current students and employees, as well as an annual fire safety report containing policy statements and fire statistics for on-campus student housing. At UNC Asheville these reports are published together in the Annual Security and Fire Safety Report. Prospective students and employees must be informed of the availability of this report.
- Submit crime statistics to the U.S. Department of Education each fall via a web-based data form.
- Maintain a daily crime log of alleged criminal incidents which is open to public inspection.
- Disclose missing student notification procedures that pertain to students residing in on-campus student housing facilities.