Protect Yourself from Stalking

Often times stalking victims feel as if there is nothing they can do to protect themselves, this page provides information and resources to help victims of stalking take back their sense of security and power. If the information here does not answer your questions or you simply wish to speak with someone about stalking, please contact Center staff, we are here to help. Follow the links below to navigate this article. 

Protecting Yourself     Contacting the Police    Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act

Protecting Yourself from Stalking

  • Request stalking assistance resources from the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity.
  • Visit the Emily Taylor Center to talk with staff
  • Clearly communicate to the stalker that you want the behavior to stop. Tell the stalker "no" once and only once. Further communication with the stalker can be dangerous and may escalate the behavior.
  • Consider getting a dog. This may provide extra protection.
  • Block your address and phone number (i.e., Department of Motor Vehicles, voter registration, phone company, gas / water / electric company).
  • Use caution when giving out your home address or phone number.
  • Get a post office box and use it.
  • If the stalker gets your home phone number, contact the police. Phone harassment is against the law. In all likelihood, they will advise you not to answer those calls. Keep your answering machine on to record the calls and report each incident. Contact your phone company or check your phone book for additional phone security options.
  • Document everything. Keep records of all contact made by the stalker and any unusual situations that occur.
  • Take a self-defense class. The most effective self-defense classes emphasize "street smarts" rather than physical strength or skill and teach you how to deescalate confrontations.
  • Ask co-workers and roommates to screen calls and visitors.
  • Destroy discarded mail (i.e., purchase an inexpensive shredder).
  • Don't accept packages unless they were personally ordered.
  • Get a cell phone and keep it with you at all times.
  • Never be afraid to sound your car horn to attract attention.
  • Acquaint yourself with all-night stores and other public places in your area that are highly populated.
  • Notify professors, your academic department and others at KU who can help you.
  • Contact the Office of the University Registrar to obtain a release of information form and request that your information not be given out (see information below regarding FERPA).
  • If you live in a Residence Hall, let your RA know what is going on. Do the same with your landlord if you live off-campus.
  • If you have children in school, contact the school and let them know about the stalking. Again, fill out a form requesting that your children's information not be given out (see information below regarding FERPA).
  • Find resources for support.
  • Tell trusted individuals you are being stalked. They can help you!

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Contacting the Police

  • It is important to communicate to the stalker that you want the behavior(s) to stop in order to obtain police assistance. This does not have to be done in person. Tell the stalker to stop by sending him/her a letter or telling him/her over the phone. When writing a letter, keep a copy for your records. If you choose to confront the stalker in person, take someone with you for protection/support.
  • If you feel intimidated, uncomfortable or afraid, contact the police and talk with them. They can discuss options for self-protection.
  • While it is difficult for the police to take action against the stalker unless the behavior meets the legal definition, it is helpful to contact the police when you feel threatened. Phone harassment and criminal threat are against the law.
  • If the behavior does not meet the legal definition, the police can assist you in filing a criminal report. If you choose to file a criminal report and you can identify the perpetrator, the police will make contact with him/her, gather the facts and file the report.
  • If the perpetrator is unknown, steps will be taken to identify him/her before further steps can be taken.

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Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act

  • This act guarantees that your personal school records, excluding directory information, cannot be given out unless the individual is acting on behalf of the university (i.e., financial aid).
  • Directory information is defined by KU as name, current address and telephone number, permanent address and telephone number, email address, date of birth, enrollment status, etc.
  • It is against University policy to give out personally identifiable information to a third party who is NOT acting on behalf of the University or is not regulated by the government without your permission.
  • Personally identifiable information is defined as name, information about parents or other family members, personal identifiers such as social security number or student number, personal characteristics or other information that would make the student's identity easily traceable.
  • Third parties must have written consent from the individual to receive personally identifiable information.
  • You may request that your directory information not be given out (see University Registrar).

Did You Know..
  • Only 23% of all Distinguished Professors at KU are women, compared to 24% three years ago
  • Of the 165 members of the Kansas legislature, only 40 are women
  • Only 3 of the 14 Kansas Court of Appeals Judges are women
  • 31% of Kansas families with a single-female head of household live below the poverty level
  • Median earnings in Kansas for women are just 77% of what median earnings are for men

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