With these current and frightening times, you might be worrying about how to keep everyone safe. And you might be especially worried about safety at your synagogue. We understand. That’s why we are here to help you determine the best ways to protect everyone. It starts with the letter T. Are you ready for the three T’s of simple ways to help protect each other at your synagogue?
Did you know that you have a higher chance of deterring a threat by talking to someone? According to “An Expert Shares 11 Security Tips For Synagogues After Pittsburgh” by Kait Hobson, one simple way to keep everyone safe starts with a greeting,
“…[it] can be as simple as the rabbi saying, ‘Greet somebody that you don’t know when you’re walking into service.’ Urging your congregation to pay attention, to look around, and to trust that they can report any suspicious person — and that they know who to report to — is extremely valuable.”“An Expert Shares 11 Security Tips For Synagogues After Pittsburgh” by Kait Hobson
While staying in communication with one another works well, there is another important layer to safety: technology.
It may seem obvious, but technology can be a huge help when creating a safer environment in your synagogue. Hobson also mentions taking advantage of utilizing technology. This can start with simple security cameras, alarm systems, and automatic locks. Placing cameras in corners and places well traveled is a good idea, and having them in places that are most sacred is also important. Talk with each other to find out what works best in your area, and research technology that fits. If you want to be completely covered, you could invest in earpieces for security guards on duty. But, technology isn’t the only solution. Training is too.
While technology sounds like it would be enough, it isn’t. The next thing you should consider is training. It might sound repetitive, but train, train, train. The more experienced you are, the more your training will become second nature. As Hobson notes, training is a great idea.
Security expert and Iraq/Afghanistan veteran Joey Olivo recommends protecting the door at all costs and thinking practically and tactically. You should complete semi-annual training at a minimum and make quarterly your goal. Cover general safety, scenarios, and CPR certification. Medical emergencies will be the most common, but prepare for any other threats like suspicious people, domestic situations, and active shooters. If you start with that, you will be in great shape and have better knowledge of threat situations.
Protect Your Synagogue with APS
Overall, if you practice these three things, you will step in the right direction. Staying in communication with everyone at a service, installing proper technology, and practicing drills and training is the most critical aspect of staying safe in your synagogue. As a person of faith, you should know the best way to ask for help – prayer. That is the basis for every religion. If you are unsure how to do this or don’t know where to start, turn to APS. We are experts in the security field. Contact us today and schedule a security and risk consultation. We are your first step.