Did You Know 649 Deaths as a Result of Deadly Force were Recorded in Places of Worship Between 1999 and 2013? Are You Prepared?
Throughout history, religious establishments have been a target for violence and destruction. History is known to repeat itself, and nothing has changed in the 21st century as America has witnessed 649 deaths, from 1999 to 2013, due to an armed intruder in places of worship. Places of worship are often thought of as a sanctuary for the helpless and the many; this combination makes churches seem vulnerable and allows armed intruders to maximize casualties and satiate their delusional goal of chaos.
June 22, 1980 ushered in a different and more deadly form of violence at the First Baptist Church in Daingerfield, Texas. During Sunday morning service, a lone gunman shot fifteen members of the congregation, killing a seven-year-old girl, an adult woman, and three adult men. This mass shooting took place in less than sixty seconds. Religious organizations now faced a threat that was seemingly impossible to combat.
Since the tragic events in Daingerfield, Texas, it is estimated that more than thirty people die due to church shootings every single year. Shootings since the 1980’s have involved disgruntled church members, those involved in domestic disputes, gang members, mentally unstable individuals, terrorists, and thieves. These facts speak to the truth that deadly shootings can happen to anyone, anywhere. ALICE Training has been providing places of worship with the knowledge and training necessary to survive an active shooter.
Educate, Train, and Prepare Your Place of Worship with the Help of ALICE Training
ALICE Training ensures that your place of worship is equipped with security strategies that will prepare staff and clergy for the invasion of an active shooter.
Many are unaware that the threat of armed intruders is growing not only in synagogues, churches, temples, and mosques, but in all industries within the United States today. Because of this, one of ALICE Training’s main focuses is educating church staff and clergy about the real dangers of an armed intruder. Today, education is easy, accessible, and efficient through the ALICE e-Learning.
Conducted throughout the United States, ALICE Training hosts live, local seminars and eLearning modules that provide your place of worship with the training and resources necessary to be adequately prepared in the event of an active shooter. After participating in this intensive training, your place of worship will become certified and prepared to effectively manage emergency situations and active shooter scenarios.
To maximize the effectiveness of your training, ALICE Training visits each place of worship to identify existing infrastructure design and communication technologies that could help save lives in the event of armed intruder. We will provide your place of worship with a distinct emergency preparedness plan that provides effective church security to your staff, clergy, and congregation.
ALICE (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate) Training’s proactive strategies empower your staff, clergy, and congregation with the knowledge necessary to survive during an armed intruder event.
Security Strategies for Staff and Clergy
In the event of an active shooter, utilizing church staff and clergy is an important step that every church, big or small, must take.
- Establish a Security Presence
It is critical that your place of worship forms a security team that is constantly working to prevent and prepare for the invasion of an armed intruder. Ideally, your security team should be filled with trained individuals such as, law enforcement officers, federal and state police, military personnel, firefighters, emergency workers, etc. Your congregation is filled with these qualified individuals who would be happy to assist in the security of their place of worship.
- Secure Your Place of Worship
Assess the structural security of your place of worship. Decisions must be made regarding convenience and safety. An easily accessed building does not slow down the intruders ability to easily access large numbers of congregants. Can entry points be limited to allow better monitoring by the security team? Are late-arrivals met and guided/escorted to the appropriate area? These types of vulnerabilities and how they are addressed can be the difference between quickly identifying a threat or the opportunity an armed intruder needs to cause destruction and chaos.
ALICE Training offers to help conduct these structural assessments to identify and suggest resolutions for these vulnerabilities.
- Post Greeters at All Entrances
Posting greeters at the main entrances of your church is not only a friendly gesture to new comers and your congregation, but is a great tactic for identifying potential threats. With proper training, your greeters can identify odd or threatening behavior among the individuals who enter your place of worship. These abnormal behaviors can then be relayed to your security team. This information may just allow your security team to prevent or quickly address any threat that may arise.
Call or contact the ALICE Training Institute to prepare and certify your place of worship through our emergency preparedness training.