Crisis Communications: Avoid These Mistakes
To survive a crisis, leaders at your K-12 school, college, or university must show fortitude and develop thick skin. They must know what actions to avoid when speaking to the media.
When speaking with the media, DON’T do any the following:
- Discuss legal ramifications (including responsibility and liability) of the crisis
- Provide unnecessary information
- Speculate ─ you should stick to written, counsel-approved messages with known facts
- Release names of any injured person until notifying next of kin
- Say, “No comment,” “I’m not allowed to talk,” “I can’t tell you anything,” or “I don’t have time to talk to you”
- Let misinformation go unchallenged
- Put anything in writing, including emails, that you don’t want to see in the next day’s newspaper
In addition, offer an escort to any media members visiting your campus.
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About the Author
Alyssa Keehan, Esq.
CPCU, ARM, Director of Risk Management Research & Consulting
Alyssa oversees the development of UE’s risk management content and consulting initiatives, ensuring reliable and trustworthy guidance for our members. Her areas of expertise include campus sexual misconduct, Title IX, threat assessment, campus security, contracts, and risk transfer. She previously handled UE liability claims and held positions in the fields of education and insurance.