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Office of Mental Health

Violence Prevention: Managing Situations

What if a youth makes a threat that puts him or her or others in imminent danger? For instance a weapon may be present.

Treat this as an emergency. To diffuse the situation you should:

You should familiarize yourself with your school's Incident Management Plan, asking four questions:

Knowing the answer to each question before a crisis happens will better prepare you and your school to act effectively. For more information or training on handling violent or potentially violent situations, contact the New York State Police or your local law enforcement agencies and ask about programs for schools in your community.

What if a youth who has exhibited some of the red flags makes a threat that may be carried out but does not pose imminent danger?

What if I still have concerns about a youth?

Work with your school's administration to obtain an examination by a qualified mental health professional whenever you are concerned about threats a youth makes. While there is no foolproof method of identifying potentially dangerous youths, it is best to bring your concerns to the attention of people who can professionally assess the risk for violence.

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