Safety and Assault
- To report an emergency situation requiring Police, Fire and/or Ambulance – 911 (free from any phone)
- Queen’s Campus Security and Emergency Services for on-campus emergencies – 613-533-6111 (or 36111 from internal phones)
- The SeQure Student Safety Mobile App (available for iOS, Android, and Blackberry smartphones) includes the ability to call the above numbers and details about some of the services noted below.
Safety Precautions while in Kingston
Kingston is a relatively safe city in which to live, work and study. However, it is difficult to know what is dangerous when you are not familiar with the area. Here are some general rules to follow:
- Lock your apartment or house, car or bike even if you are leaving it for only a few seconds. Lock your apartment or house at all times.
- At night, walk about with someone else, not by yourself. (See Walkhome, below)
- Travel on well-used, well-lit walkways and sidewalks, not alleyways and shortcuts when you are walking somewhere during the day or night.
- Let other family members or friends know where you are going when you go out and the approximate time of your return.
- Do not leave articles unattended in public places.
- Trust your intuition and realize that if you feel uncomfortable, there is a reason for it. Do not ignore your feelings. Do something about it.
- Familiarize yourself with your surroundings where you live and work. Know telephone locations, designated emergency exits and other possible avenues for help.
Walking at Night
Walkhome is a free service that can be accessed by calling 613-533-9255. A team of one male and one female will walk or bike with you to your destination. You need not be on campus or heading home – Walkhome will pick you up and drop you off anywhere within their boundaries.
Campus Security and Emergency Services provides escorts from one point on campus to another for staff, faculty and students when Walkhome is off duty. This service is provided at any time day or night, all year round. Call Campus Security at 613-533-6080 or use one of the blue security assistance phones to request an escort.
On Campus Resources
Please review the extensive list of on campus resources available on our Health and Safety Planning page in addition to what you find here.
Blue Lights on Campus
On the main or west campus of Queen’s, there are OUTDOOR emergency phones, easily identified by their blue lights and yellow boxes with a large red button. When the red button is pushed, the phone is connected directly to the Emergency Report Centre (ERC) of Campus Security, where the exact location of the phone is indicated, and two-way communication is established. Security will ask the caller how they need assistance. The phone can clearly transmit sounds up to 10 meters (30 feet) away. If no voice is heard, Security staff respond immediately.
The phones are intended to be used in any situation where you feel threatened or anxious, if you witness an accident or a crime, or if you wish to be escorted.
Make yourself familiar with the location of the blue lights along the routes you typically walk. If you begin to feel uneasy, concerned, or afraid, don’t hesitate to use them.
These phones assist in a more direct manner than ordinary telephones. No coins are needed; just lift the receiver and press. They are located INSIDE campus buildings. The Assistance phones offer direct lines to: Security, the Walkhome Service, a Taxi Service (one specific company) and the Kingston Access Bus. In a crisis situation, the fastest way to contact security is to push #1 (no need to wait for the voice message to finish). However, if no buttons are pushed, the line will automatically connect to Security after about one minute. The phone indicates the exact location of the call. If no voice is heard, the situation is considered an emergency, and Security staff are immediately dispatched to the location of the phone.
In Case of Abuse or Assault
I think I am being abused or assaulted. What can I do about it?
If you are being hurt or abused by your spouse or partner, or if the person you love is hurting you or threatening to hurt you, or if you feel scared and trapped, or you know someone who is in this situation, this is violence against you and it is a crime in Canada. You can get help.
It is not your fault and the abuse will not go away unless you do something. Call the Sexual Assault Crisis Centre at 613-544-6424 to talk to someone who understands your situation and will help you to decide what to do. Also, Kingston Interval House at 613-546-1777 is a shelter for women and children where you can all go to be safe and plan for your future. You can stay there for free.
When you decide to get help from the people mentioned above, please remember that this does not necessarily mean that the police will be notified. You are in control and no one else will become involved unless you want them to.
Other sources for support and information include:
Kingston Community Counselling Centre, 613-549-7850
Queen’s Legal Aid, 613-533-2102
Anything that you tell the people at these phone numbers is completely confidential.
Interacting with other people in a new country can often be very confusing. It may be difficult for you to get a definition of what is “normal behaviour” in certain situations. One problem is in distinguishing between helpful assistance and opportunistic behaviour. Is that person being nice to you just to be kind, or are they taking advantage of you in some way? If you believe you have encountered such a situation, you will at first feel uneasy. Whether or not something inappropriate is going on, there is a reason for your fears and they should be dealt with.
If you have further questions, after reviewing the information above, advising is available (without an appointment) from the International Student Advisors at the Queen’s University International Centre from Monday to Friday between 9:00am and 4:00pm.