SAFER SCHOOL OHIO- Anonymous Tip/Text Line: What is it?
A safety resource is available to Ohio Schools that could prevent and alert local law enforcement to a school safety crisis. This resource – an anonymous tip line – is available free of charge to every school district and public and private school in Ohio.
The Ohio Department of Education and the Ohio Department of Public Safety are launching the SaferOH tip line that will accept both calls and texts 24 hours a day for schools that register for the service.
This tip line allows students and adults to anonymously share information with school officials and law enforcement about threats to student safety—whether that involves a threatened mass incident or harm to a single student.
Every tip can remain anonymous. School safety analysts may ask for additional information, but the caller can remain secret or leave his or her contact information for later follow-up.
Calls or texts to 844-SaferOH (844-723-3764) are answered by analysts in the Ohio Homeland Security’s Threat Assessment and Prevention (TAP) Unit. When action is needed, the TAP Unit immediately forwards information to local school officials, local law enforcement agencies and others, if necessary.
TAP Unit analysts always follow up quickly with the affected school and law enforcement agencies to make sure that the incident is investigated, action is taken and the outcome is tracked.
The assurance that their calls or texts cannot be traced and that serious, proper action will be taken to end the threat is helping to persuade young people to take a stand against school violence.
What happen to a tip when it comes in to 844-SAFEROH tip/text line?
Once a tip is received by the Safer Schools Ohio tip line, Threat Assessment and Prevention (TAP) Unit personnel working with Ohio Homeland Security (OHS) will determine whether the concern is a school-related threat of a criminal nature and/or a criminal terrorism-related tip or suspicious activity. All school-related tip information will be coordinated with the TAP Unit who will ultimately determine the level of the threat. If the threat is of a criminal nature the TAP Unit will then use all available OHS resources, including the Intelligence Liaison Officer Program, local law enforcement liaisons within the SAIC and the Ohio Department of Education Analyst to notify appropriate school officials and partners. In all cases, tip information will be shared with the appropriate partners, who have a right-to-know or need-to-know to include, but not limited to:
• Local public safety professionals in the affected areas, e.g. law enforcement, fire/EMS, bomb squad
• Intelligence Liaison Officers in the affected area(s)
• Ohio Department of Education (ODE) representative to the Ohio SAIC
• School Resource Officer (if direct contact of OHS)
• Ohio State Highway Patrol’s Intelligence Unit
• Ohio’s two regional Fusion Centers on The Northeast Ohio Regional Fusion Center (NEORFC) o Greater Cincinnati Regional Fusion Center (GCRFC)
• US Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
• Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
• Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF)
Suspicious activity or non-criminal, school-safety concerns (i.e. general tips about bullying, suspicious behavior/actions discovered on social media, fights between students, reports of individuals on school grounds who may not have an appropriate reason for being there) will be routed to the ODE representative, school administrators and local law enforcement. The caller can remain anonymous or they can leave their contact information in the event more information is needed at a later date.
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