Over the past year, many of us have suffered the loss of a loved one, family member, friend or colleague. Some of us may have experienced multiple losses, either from COVID-19 or from other causes, yet the pandemic has changed how we grieve and commemorate the lives of those we’ve lost.
Social distancing, stay-at-home orders and limits on in-person gatherings have prevented us from being with loved ones when they die, or being able to mourn someone’s death in person with friends and family. Coping with grief, being present through our work and family life, while contending with the ongoing uncertainties of the pandemic can be overwhelming. As part of the UNLV family, please know that you are not alone.
We have each experienced loss during this time and know how tough it can be.
Below, we’ve provided a guide to the resources that can help you, your students, or your coworkers navigate the multiple stressors of grief and loss. Please use the resources in our academic community to ease the struggle you may be experiencing. We are here for each other and that is what good university communities do!
— UNLV President Keith E. Whitfield and Executive Vice President & Provost Chris L. Heavey
For life-threatening emergencies, call 911 or go directly to a hospital emergency room. Dial 911 from a campus phone or (702) 895-3669 from a cell phone to reach University Police.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers resources for grief and loss, including information for helping children understand and cope with the loss of a loved one, and identifying common grief reactions in adults and children, such as:
- Shock, disbelief, or denial
- Periods of sadness
- Loss of sleep
- Loss of appetite
Support for Faculty and Staff
Employee Assistance Program
It is important to recognize that grieving the loss of a loved one can be psychologically and emotionally difficult. It may be helpful for faculty to discuss these issues with a colleague or supervisor or to seek professional grief counseling through the university’s Employee Assistance Program. Call the UNLV Benefits Office for more information at 702-895-3504.
Faculty and staff also have access to TAO Connect, Therapy Assistance Online, which is a digital platform aimed at making behavioral health therapy more accessible, efficient, and effective. TAO Connect provides free and anonymous self-help tools that allow people to work on improving their behavioral health on their own schedule. The CDC also provides resources for coping with the pandemic.
Human Resource provides resources through the online work-life space where faculty and staff can find support for achieving professional and personal balance. Programs and services include low-cost health and wellness options, professional development opportunities, employee engagement groups, and more.
UNLV recently assembled an online hub of support services provided across campus, which promote “whole-person” wellness, extending from mental and physical to social wellbeing.
Support for Students
UNLV Support Team
Faculty and staff can play an invaluable role in helping students who are in distress. Expressions of interest, concern, and compassion are important factors that could encourage a student to seek help. The student of concern referral is a part of a comprehensive reporting system that fosters a safe and supportive campus community. It allows faculty and staff at UNLV to share appropriate information about students for whom they are concerned. Staff and faculty, friends and family members of students in distress can complete the referral form to share pertinent information. Call 702-895-1404 with questions related to the UNLV Support Team or completing a Support Team referral.
The UNLV Support Team also offers a faculty and staff guide to helping a student in distress as well as a free interactive online tutorial on how to navigate conversations regarding mental health with students. Staff and faculty can use the enrollment key "unlasvegas" to complete the interactive tutorial.
Student Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)
CAPS strives to support the holistic well-being of UNLV students in support of their academic pursuits. CAPS uses a step-care model of services, including outreach programming, workshops, brief consultation, individual and group therapy, and same-day urgent services. Students in need of urgent services may contact CAPS at 702-895-3627 for a same-day consultation Monday through Thursday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. and Fridays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
CAPS also offers students access to TAO Connect, a free and anonymous self-help tool that allows them to work on improving their behavioral health on their own schedule.
After hours emergency and crisis services
- Desert Parkway Behavioral Health Hospital (24 hours): 877-663-7976
- Nevada Suicide Prevention Hotline (24 hours): 1-800-992-5757
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (24 hours): 1-800-273-8255
- Crisis Text Line (24 hours): Text CONNECT or HOME to 741741
- UNLV Care Line (confidential hotline for guidance about stalking, rape, and relationship violence; 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday for immediate support): 702-895-0602