Houses of worship needs to ensure that reasonable precautions are in place at their church to keep it safe for those who use it. Houses of worship are soft targets because the doors to the church are open for everyone to enter. An annual assessment and evaluation should be conducted no matter what size church you occupy. This will give you a good understanding of the risks that may be associated with the day-to-day operations. Having preventative measures in place should be a priority.
These are things that can potentially harm people. Walk around the inside and outside of your church to identify them, deciding how likely it is that harm could occur. Remember to include those hazards that might arise from certain activities such as concerts, festivals or other events.
- A security assessment of the church or place of worship and their properties. This is necessary for developing action plans for the church or house of worship can take.
- If possible, churches may consider forming safety and security committees with members of the congregation to review the assessment results and make decisions moving forward.
- Ensure your emergency plans are updated. If not, consider making changes to your emergency plan to ensure what you have in place may be in line with your surrounding community.
- If it’s not already in place, consider implementing security technology such as CCTV, walkie talkies, intercoms, notification systems, and other devices.
- Consider building mutual aid with the local Sheriff’s department or local law enforcement in your location so they can regularly check your facility or consider hiring off-duty law enforcement officers as security personnel.