Safety and security at schools, places of employment, places of worship, businesses, nightclubs, venues, etc., all of which I call SITES, has been a topic in our consciousness in recent years because of the mass killings, most by gunfire, most by insiders, in every section of our country. Many, if not most of the killings were preventable, foreseeable risks ignored except for a very few who raised concerns about a threat they saw coming.
Mass killings at such sites is not a recent phenomenon. The deadliest of school killings, for example, occurred in Bath, Michigan on May 18, 1927 when Andrew Kehoe, a school board member, detonated explosives in and around his school house killing some 42 persons and wounding 43 others. Most killed, and wounded were children, several were school staff. In fact, there were prior behaviors by Kehoe indicating a threat to the school.
Safety and security are “conditions” and “situations” embedded in the presence or absence of hazards and threats. Can we remove all hazards and threats from a site? Probably not. But we can remove the most serious and the most egregious of catastrophic risks and manage the lesser ones reasonably well.
My mission in this text is to outline the six keys to managing an effective site safety and security program, a program based upon prevention, deterrence, and enforcement of policy.
I will be short and to the point. I could put lots of examples of policy statements and protective measures in this text, but I won’t. I shall leave it to individual site management to flesh out the details. One area where I have provided a detailed example of policy is in Nine — Audit Questionnaire.
My purpose is to present an easy to understand process for managing a site safety and security program. I will leave out the bureaucratic dogma that we all dislike and most of us do not understand anyway.
In the end, it is all up to site leaders, site policy makers, and the people who carry out the policy, and that is all of us, to keep our sites safe and secure.
This book is not about the larger topic of societal gun control. We dilute our efforts at keeping sites safe and secure by focusing on societal gun control. Weapons policy is important, but it needs to be about weapons policy at the site.
Site safety and security is about one thing, effective management of hazards and threats.
I have taken the best I learned about safety and security management in my former role as Corporate Security Risk Manager at CrownZellerbach Corporation and coupled that experience with my long-term tenure in law enforcement. I hope my work in producing this book helps the cause of safety and security at SITES!