Reporting Safety Concerns

The University of Chicago believes that all of its faculty, staff, and students share responsibility in maintaining an environment that is safe for learning and work.

Providing an open line of communication to report concerns is integral. Reporting environmental health and safety concerns to the proper parties is always the first step in any resolution process. Follow the communication process described on this page to initiate the resolution of environmental health and safety concerns that you have observed at the University.

While the University encourages following the lines of communication described here to maintain open dialogue between employees or students and their supervisors, you are always entitled to directly contact Environmental Health and Safety at any time. When requested, Environmental Health and Safety will hold your identity confidential. You can also confidentially report a concern through the Whistleblower hotline at 800.971.4317 or through the Web Reporting System.

All workers have the right to raise a safety or health concern without being retaliated against.

Step 1: Observe an Environmental Health and Safety Concern

When an environmental health and safety concern is observed, determine whether you are capable of resolving it by either correcting the issue yourself or by notifying the correct party (e.g., submitting a work request to Facilities Services). If you are not able to resolve the concern, seek departmental help (proceed to Step 2).

Examples of environmental health and safety concerns include:

  • Workplace conditions or actions that could cause harm to employees or the environment;
  • Lack of or poor condition of equipment, tools, or personal protective equipment (PPE) required to perform work safely; or
  • Violations of University policies or governmental regulations applicable to occupational health and safety or environmental health.

Please note: Emergencies must be reported directly to the University of Chicago Police Department (UCPD) at 773.702.8181 or 123 from a campus telephone.

Step 2: Seek Department Help

Report the environmental health and safety concern to your supervisor or administrator in your department, and he/she shall initiate the resolution process within your department. Contact Environmental Health and Safety if your department cannot resolve the concern (proceed to Step 3).

Step 3: Contact Environmental Health and Safety

You and your supervisor can contact Environmental Health and Safety for further assistance if the concern cannot be resolved by your department. Environmental Health and Safety can be contacted via email at safety@uchicago.edu or by telephone at 773.702.9999.

If further action is required, Environmental Health and Safety will escalate the resolution of the concern as follows:

  • Stage One: Environmental Health and Safety will initiate contact with the supervisor or administrator in the department;
  • Stage Two: Environmental Health and Safety will initiate contact with the chair, dean, director, or divisional head; and
  • Stage Three: Environmental Health and Safety will initiate contact with the Provost and Vice President for Operations and Chief Financial Officer.