Stay A-WEAR to promote workplace security

Apr 20, 2016, 09:23 AM by Kristen Hensley
Executive leadership was A-WEAR at a recent Mondays in March presentation. (Left-right) Donna Sollenberger, Dr. Danny Jacobs, Cheryl Sadro and Dr. David Callender.

UTMB President David Callender first announced the WEAR initiative in January, to ensure all university faculty, staff, students and contractors consistently display proper identification while on UTMB property.

“UTMB has grown to three campuses and with new buildings coming online in Galveston and League City, the executive leadership team felt it was a good time to emphasize the importance of wearing university ID badges. This simple act can enhance the security of our campuses and clinics while also letting patients and visitors know who they can go to if they need help,” Callender said.

You can personally be a-WEAR by remembering to wear your UTMB ID badge properly—visible from a distance, with your photo facing outward—at all times while on UTMB property. Encourage your co-workers to do the same. This will help us to identify ourselves to each other, as well as to patients and visitors who may need our assistance.

When entering and exiting secured areas, be aware of others attempting to gain entry when the doors are open. If they are not displaying UTMB ID, ask if you can assist them. They may be lost or may not realize they need access for a particular area.

If you “badge in” through a door, resist the temptation to hold the door for the person behind you. It’s important that we each badge ourselves in to ensure we aren’t inadvertently giving access to someone who shouldn’t have it.

So what should you do if you see someone in a UTMB staff area who isn’t wearing a UTMB ID badge?

According to UTMB Police, if you see unfamiliar people in your work area without visible ID, be customer-service friendly and ask if you can help.

“If they are lost, you can assist them in finding their way. If they have criminal intentions, they have just been alerted that someone is aware of them,”said UTMB Police Chief Thomas Engells.

Chief Engells suggests these tips for approaching someone who isn’t wearing a UTMB badge, whether on the Galveston, League City or Angleton Danbury campuses:
1. Determine if the person has a link to UTMB. The innocuous, “Can I help you?” often works and will help break the ice. We have several large and dynamic campuses, and many times the person in question may be a lost patient, visitor, vendor, or prospective employee or student.

2. Tell them why you asked. “I don’t see a UTMB ID badge and thought you might need assistance.”

3. Give them space. If they do produce an ID badge or a credible explanation, wish them a nice day and move on.

4. Help them out. If they don’t have an ID badge but need one, direct them to the Badging Office and/or file a missing/lost ID Badge Report with University Police.

5. Call for help. If they don’t have a credible explanation—or if you just feel more comfortable—contact University Police at 409-772-1111.
Remember: It’s everyone’s responsibility to wear their UTMB ID badge and to help keep our campuses and clinics safe. Always pay attention to your surroundings and immediately report a suspicious person or activity.