FREE Church Safety Webinar
Our churches have always been considered a safe refuge where the doors where open and visitors were welcome. Sadly, through the decades, times have changed. The recent violent acts toward pastors and church members has brought a new focus on church security. As Ben Franklin said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
In 2016, 65 violent deaths-defined as homicide, suicides, and aggressors killed in action-took place at churches or ministries. A disturbing 25 percent were killed as the result of domestic spillover. These statistics are alarming and warrant a closer look at how churches safeguard their members.
Louisiana Church Insurance and Guide One Insurance will be hosting a FREE Church Safety Webinar on Wednesday, December 6th, at 1:00 P.M. (CST). Call 1-800-233-2690 or follow the link below to sign up for the free webinar. If your church is considering developing a church safety team, register for the webinar today!
They can also provide FREE booklets and guidelines to help you as your develop your new security team. Contact them today to request those resources!
8 Church Safety Tips
1. Have A Church Security Plan: Planning is the most important step. This involves a written plan with possible “what if” scenarios – often called a SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). This plan should be developed by church leaders and adopted as your church’s policy and procedures manual to deal with incidents and emergencies that arise. Consult with local law enforcement about their campus security guidelines. Contact other churches who may have a SOP for your review.
2. Develop Church Security Ministry Team: Find church members who may have a public safety background and develop them as part of a volunteer team. Law Enforcement Officers or other “post-certified” individuals should lead the team. Schedule your team to be available anytime there are church services, events, or people on church grounds.
3. Church Global Security Training: Take advantage of eyes and ears of all church members. Inform them what to do if they spot unusual behavior or a potential problem. All volunteers and employees should go through training.
4. Controlled Hours of Operation: Your church should have designated public hours of operation and someone should be in the building when the doors are unlocked. Try to avoid having only one employee/volunteer in the building as that leaves them more vulnerable. There is safety in numbers.
5. Keyed Entrances: It can be difficult to control who is entering your building but you can control who has a key. Volunteers sometimes leave and forget to lock the doors. A church leader should always double check the locks. Every door should have a lock or key card entrance.
6. Lock-Down Procedures: Develop lock- down procedures in the event of a crisis, especially in children’s areas. Determine the best approach to protecting church members.
7. Communicate With Members: Have a church communication plan in place to make church members aware of safety measures. Make your communications public so that if there is anyone in the congregation who means harm, they are made aware that there are eyes on them.
8. Prayer: The power of prayer is as almighty as the ONE we serve. Use your prayer teams to cover your church with a Heavenly hedge of protection.