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Key and Lock Policy, SIUE - 6F2


    The University Key and Lock Policy controls the issuance, maintenance, and accounting of keyed and keyless access systems for SIUE. This policy and its systems were promulgated by the University to control access to its facilities on the campuses of Edwardsville, Alton, and East St. Louis.


    1. Key Control Department of Facilities Management

      Key Control is authorized to initiate, through the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Administration, procedures needed to implement this policy. This includes the design, maintenance, and control of University keyed and keyless access systems and inventory to ensure authorized access to University facilities.

    2. Approving Authorities

      The Chancellor, Vice Chancellors, Deans, Directors, and authorized delegates may approve key requests for employees within their jurisdictions. The responsibility for the use of issued keys and keyless access is the responsibility of the employee and the unit head authorizing the issue. Unit heads or authorized delegates are responsible for securing University keys or terminating keyless access from reporting staff when the employment ends or assigned duties do not require the use of issued access. Unit heads/authorized delegates are responsible for the timely reporting and liability of lost or unreturned keys from reporting staff. Costs may be assessed to the department to secure areas resulting from lost or unreturned keys.

    3. Key Recipients

      Employees and contracted vendors who are issued keys accept responsibility for proper use. Employees are authorized to use the issued keys to gain access to their work stations during normal working hours, for overtime work, and as approved by the unit head. Accessing areas by key or card access to gain entry to University offices or facilities not required by assigned duties is strictly prohibited. Employees are responsible for reporting lost keys immediately to Key Control, University Police, and the reporting supervisor. Keys are to be returned to the unit head or Key Control when no longer required.


    All University property except office equipment will be secured by locks and access systems under the University Master Key Lock System or other approved systems as administered by Key Control.


    Appropriate disciplinary action will result in the event of failure to report lost or stolen keys, unauthorized use, transfer, and/or possession of keys or keyless access, or having University keys duplicated.

    Sanctions may include a fine, suspension, or termination of employment depending upon the extent of the liability accruing to the University from the misuse of keys and keyless access.


    1. Key Issue and Return

      The authorizing unit will complete and forward the Key Request Form to Key Control to issue a key to reporting staff. (Section 2.A.) Requests for building master keys require a letter of justification by the Unit Head and approval by the responsible Dean/Director. Key Control will forward documents for building master key issuance for additional approvals as required.

      Upon receipt and review of a completed Key Request Form, the order will be filled and the authorizing unit notified that the employee may pick up the key at the Bursar Office. Keys not picked up within 30 days will be destroyed. Appropriate identification (SIUE ID or driver's license) by the individual named on the Key Request will be required to receive the key.

      By signing the receipt for issuance of a University key, the employee is regulated by Key and Lock Policy for the use and care of a University key.

      Key Control also controls exterior and supports interior keyless access to University facilities for approved faculty, staff, and students. (See Section 5.H ).

    2. Key Transfers

      University-issued keys may be transferred among University staff if the key has not been reported lost and Key Policy regulations have been met.

      If the department wishes to keep custody of a key pending transfer to another employee, the department must notify Key Control within two weeks that the key is in custody of the department (termed "held in escrow"). After receipt of such notice, Key Control will issue a return receipt to the department. Escrowed keys must be transferred to another employee within ninety (90) days or returned to Key Control. This provision allows keys to be readily available for replacement staff.

      Keys held by the department for transfer are coded "ESCROW" in the database, and periodic lists are sent to the appropriate units. Keys that are lost while in "ESCROW" are coded "LOST-ESCROW", indicating that the unit was responsible for the loss and will be assessed a lost key penalty.

    3. New Keys for Transferring Employees

      Employees transferring from one unit to another shall return and/or account for all keys issued by the former unit prior to receiving keys for the current unit. If the original keys are still needed, a note from that unit head confirming the continuing need is required.

    4. Locks Removed from the Master System

      If required criteria are met, departments may request a specific area to be removed from the master-keyed system. Criteria have been established to determine the necessity and the approval of such requests.

      1. Mandated by Law and/or High Risk Areas

        Removal of University space from the Primary Master System may be approved where removal is mandated by law and/or high risk areas. This includes space as follows: untaxed alcohol storage, pharmacies or drug storage, volatile storage, radiology storage, the Bursar's Office, vaults where money or valuables are stored, Key Control's combinating room, areas within the University Police, and areas where contagious disease experiments are conducted. These locks may be operated only by the operating key and the control key. Master keys will not open them.

      2. Non-Mandated High Security Areas

        Removal of University space from the Primary Master System may create a safety risk and disrupt operational and facility services. Requests must justify why the risk to the University is greater than the potential risks and disruption caused by removal from the Primary Master System. The spaces, although removed from the Primary Master System, will be accessible by the University Police in the event of an emergency.

      To remove specific areas from the Primary Master System, the appropriate Dean or Director will forward a letter to the Vice Chancellor for Administration documenting the need for removal from the Primary Master System. If needed, arrangements for janitorial service will be included, and may be at additional cost to the department.

      In the event that University Police are unable to contact the individuals having keys to such an area and forcible entry is necessary, the unit will be responsible for the cost of repairs. Keys will be cut only with authorization from the dean or director requesting the change. Duplicate keys or unit keys will not be provided. A copy of the request, documentation, and a summary of action taken will be forwarded to the Vice Chancellor for Administration, University Police, Facilities Management, and the custodial supervisor.

    5. Control and Security of Master Keys

      With appropriate authorization and justification, master keys will be issued to an employee who requires continuous use of the requested key. All costs incurred to resecure areas affected from the loss of one of these master keys rests with the employing department. Employees accepting custody of these master keys will be required to sign a statement acknowledging responsibility for their use and care. All master keys require approval of the Chancellor or the Vice Chancellor for Administration and must be justified as part of the annual Key Inventory.

      Master keys used intermittently must be secured in sequence locks when not in use. Examples of such use would be keys shared by two or more individuals or keys used by Facilities Management staff during normal working hours. If these keys are inadvertently taken home, they must be returned to the University and secured in the sequence lock as soon as the error is discovered. Exempted are keys that are in use 24 hours a day such as those rotated shift to shift by the University Police and the Facilities Management building engineers.

      Access keys will be issued to individuals who are authorized to use secured master keys. Anyone taking custody of an access key is required to sign a statement acknowledging the responsibility for the use and care of a master key.

    6. Unit Keys

      Unit keys are used by several employees within a unit during normal working hours. Unit keys will remain secured at the University after working hours and are not to be taken home by the individuals using them. The keys will be assigned to departmental employee(s) who will be responsible for their use and security. In the case of a lost or stolen unit key, Key Control will determine the need for a recore of the affected area. Cost for securing the area will be assigned to the responsible department.

    7. Vendor Keys

      Vendors may be issued keys for access as required by contract to specific areas within the University if the appropriate dean or director documents and authorizes such issuance. Vendors may include contractors or maintenance staff for telephone, elevator or vending service. Vendors are required to complete the necessary vendor/contractor paperwork and pay a key deposit before a key will be issued. Vendors accept the same liability as University employees for misuse or loss of keys. Additionally, the unit responsible for issuance of the key(s) may bear the cost of resecuring the area involved as necessary.

    8. Keyless Access

      Key Control provides exterior keyless access to buildings for approved faculty, staff, and students. A keyed lock is used in conjunction with the University I.D. card. The eform (Form X-E) is required to request keyless access and is available at After the on-line form is completed and printed, signature approval by the Dean/Director of the requesting department is required before forwarding to Key Control.

      Key Control supports a standard hardware unit for interior keyless access locks for approved faculty, staff, and students. Maintenance of hardware units are maintained by a contracted vendor. Information on the locks, including pricing and installation is available through Key Control office.

    9. Ownership of Keys

      All keys remain the property of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Keys not utilized by the unit or declared obsolete must be returned to Key Control for disposal. This action will clear the unit's key inventory account and the employee charged with the responsibility for the key(s). Issuance of a key to a University employee or contracted vendor is regulated by the Key and Lock Policy for the use and care of a University key.

    10. Lost or Stolen Keys

      A lost or stolen key must be reported by telephone and in writing to the offices of Key Control, University Police, and the unit that authorized the key as soon as the loss is discovered. Key Control will review the affected areas with the appropriate unit head to determine whether a recore is necessary. Cost for securing the area will be assigned to the responsible department. The responsible unit will also be assessed a lost key charge.

    11. Unreturned Keys

      The authorizing unit is responsible for securing key(s) from an employee terminating from the University. When an employee terminates from the University and fails to return key(s), the authorizing unit must attempt to recover them by whatever means are available. Should attempts fail; the keys will be declared lost. The responsible unit will be assessed a lost key charge.

    12. Account of Permanent Responsibility

      Since billable accounts may be of short duration, an "account of permanent responsibility" is assigned to each employing unit. This allows the unit's key inventory to be permanently assigned to an account, and the costs for services to be billed to a chargeable account. The account of permanent responsibility allows a departmental key inventory to be organized under a single account.

    13. Reports

      The following reports will be prepared and distributed:

      Report Recipient Frequency
      Campus Master Chancellor January
      Building Masters Vice Chancellor for Administration January
      Complete list of Active Keys Vice Chancellor for Administration January
      List of Active Keys by Account Number Approving Authority January
      *Student Keys Approving Authority Each academic term
      Locks off the Master System Vice Chancellor for Administration July
      Lost Key Report Vice Chancellor for Administration January
      ESCROW Key Report Approving Authority January
      Exterior Keyless Access Review Approving Authority July

    14. Key Inventory

      An annual inventory of the active and master keys is distributed to University departments in January. A separate record for each employee and vendor is prepared and mailed to the employing department. A summary report of the University key inventory and a report identifying the individuals not responding to the annual inventory are forwarded to the Vice Chancellor for Administration at the conclusion of the key inventory process.

* The "Student Keys" report will be submitted thirty (30) days prior to the end of the academic term. Each unit head will be required to sign and return it to Key Control, indicating whether the employees listed are still with the unit and still have need of the keys.

Approved by Chancellor effective 10/12/05
This policy was issued on October 28, 2005, replacing the October 20, 2005 version.
Document Reference: 6F2
Origin: VPA 6/11/86; OP 10/3/88; OP 5/12/89; OP 5/19/89; OP 8/1/91; OC 10/12/05

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