Church Security Plan
Church Security Plan – Church security at places of worship around the world is increasing due to threats such as active shooters and terrorist attacks. So to reduce these threats, there should be a security plan for the church and security training for staff and volunteers to reduce the risk of attack.
In addition, implementing safeguards for churches, such as security staff, armed security, and security procedures, are all essential elements that church leaders should consider. It does not require the same security measures as Fort Knox, but adequate physical protection is essential to better protect places of worship. Church safety and security needs security experts who can help stakeholders create the best security plan.
Church Security Plan
Every time you hit the news these days, there seems to be a tragic story about a shooting in the US, and unfortunately even worshipers are not immune. Having a church security plan in place is essential to keeping their church safe in the event of an active shooter. The Hate Crimes Report of the -The FBI revealed that there were 7,175 hate crimes committed in 2017, nearly 21 percent of which were motivated by a religious bent.
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Places of worship may be targeted because of the religious beliefs they practice or simply because of the market that makes up their community. Developing a security plan begins with stakeholders working together to create a formal strategy regarding church security. Hiring a security consultant who can assist in the security plan design process will be an excellent investment to achieve the organization’s security goals.
With today’s threats to houses of worship, churches must be prepared to ensure the safety of their congregation members. Safety and security is an essential part of church security. Does your house of worship have a threat mitigation security plan? Contingency plan to execute a response if danger arises? Do you have staff and volunteers trained to implement the security plan? These are questions you need to ask yourself as a church leader. Our goal is to help you answer these questions to ensure a safe place to worship.
The first step in creating a security plan is to determine the purpose of the plan and the threats that may affect your house of worship. It starts with a strategic planning meeting with stakeholders to discuss the types of threats and what countermeasures can help reduce the risks. Additionally, knowing what vulnerabilities currently exist in the church to assist in the security planning process.
The security policy is the church’s security rules for ensuring safety and security by staff and members to reduce potential risks. Without policies and procedures, staff cannot receive adequate training to ensure the safety of the church. The security procedures are step-by-step instructions for teams to act if a threat or emergency arises.
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It will help if you put together a security plan that includes local law enforcement. Liaison with first responders will assist in implementing the security plan in the event of an emergency. If everyone is on the same sheet of music, the security procedures and emergency plan can be better executed. It is essential for plainclothes armed security personnel to help identify friendlies who are part of the law enforcement security team. Planning and training, along with law enforcement, will support the implementation of the security plan.
The participation of church leaders in the program and in all training is essential to the success of the safety program. If the leaders do not know the plan or do not know how to carry out the plan in an emergency, it will lead to mistakes in the security plan. Stakeholders are a critical part of the security planning process and must involve everyone in a top-down approach. Church leaders must join the security program and follow all security protocols by example if they want their staff and members to follow the church’s security policy.
Having staff patrolling the church sectors helps ensure that everyone follows the safety rules. It starts with the outer perimeter (access points, parking lot), the central perimeter of the building (construction of exterior doors and walkways), and the interior perimeter (interior doors and passages). Creating a tripwire and visual surveillance of the entire property will create concentric safety rings and reduce potential threats. The goal is to create a hard target so that threats will look elsewhere for their targets.
Training is key to ensure that the security program is executed correctly. Church security teams can practice using tabletop exercises and test the site’s security plan through various attacks that may occur. The training will expose any vulnerabilities in the plan and help everyone better prepare in the event of an emergency. This allows stakeholders to go back to the drawing board to resolve issues during training and to review and update the plan.
Church Active Shooter Training Kit
As discussed above, this requires greater church security through a sound security plan, procedures, physical security, training and enforcement. The whole point is to keep the program simple and easy to follow for anyone required to do the program. The plan should not be written at a student level, but should be simple enough that anyone can follow it if a safety or emergency event occurs.
You may not have the ability to prevent a mass shooting from ever happening. Still, you can improve security in the house of worship and create a plan to respond effectively to an emergency. Having a plan is essential if you want to protect your assets and limit risk. The best choice to protect your church members and reduce your church’s liability is to hire law enforcement or private security for protection during services. The presence of law enforcement or security personnel in uniform can act as a deterrent to anyone planning to cause harm. Houses of worship must include the church’s active shooter plan in their emergency response procedures.
This active shooter program from the church will prepare staff and volunteers with guidance to follow and train for when this type of threat arises. The likelihood of a mass shooting is low, but preparedness is a crucial element for churches. It should include an active shooter program in the church.
To understand church security vulnerabilities, a church security assessment is first required. It determines probable weaknesses and threats that could cause a loss event. A church security assessment helps the security consultant better understand threats, vulnerabilities and the impact of any loss events. The security measures for the churches can be determined after the physical security assessment.
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This process is part of the security investigation to discover security loopholes and implement recommended countermeasures for houses of worship. It is the first and essential step to perform a security assessment to help design your house of worship’s security plan. When the initial security assessment is complete, an annual follow-up security review is required to track any changes. Complacency is one of the biggest challenges in houses of worship. We tend to believe that people are good, so no one expects anything terrible to happen in the church. This is not true. Not all people are good people, and victims of violent attacks will usually say they never believed an attack would happen to them.
Having security procedures is also an essential part of the security plan. Security procedures are step-by-step instructions to better protect the church. Security procedures allow the security plan to be implemented and applied in church security training. Many churches are open for worship for several hours, and allow anyone to access during these open hours. As places of worship welcome many people, this can lead to access control challenges; Therefore, churches must prepare, develop and implement strict security procedures.
An essential part of church safety and security is that all employees and volunteers receive security training. This training can help better prepare staff and volunteers for the basics of security, such as access control, observation skills and emergency management. Another essential aspect of this training is to ensure that armed security personnel are properly trained in the use of firearms and are tested on their marksmanship. Just because the members of the security team have a concealed weapons license does not mean they are skilled marksmen. Marksmanship is an ephemeral skill and requires constant practice, especially if there was an active shooter threat in an environment with many people in the church.
Every church should strive for select members to be trained and willing to assist with its security needs, which require training in church safety and security. Whether it is responding to a medical emergency, assisting a missing child, or dealing with a threat, it is imperative to have trained people respond on the spot. For this reason, many churches have chosen to institute church safety and security training. The goal is not to diminish the importance of first responders, but to increase the church’s ability to mitigate and respond to potential threats until first responders arrive. If you run a church security office, you should wear it
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