Archive

Posts Tagged ‘investigation’

Extremists Rallies –Permission and Preparation

August 21st, 2017 Comments off

protestors

With the increasing frequency of ‘extremist’ group demonstrations or rallies comes the security concerns brought on by the emotionally driven misconduct often occurring at these events. The First Amendment dictates the need for permission and tolerance of these gatherings, even though there is often an undertone of hatred that drives them. I feel that this is an emotion that should not be rewarded with a public voice, but that is just my opinion. Unfortunately, during some of these events, participants feel the end justifies the means. That is when things get out of hand and underscores the importance of event precautions and preparation.

This tendency towards violent outbreaks has become increasingly evident in politically, or racially, motivated gatherings where groups with opposite viewpoints clash. This misconduct often results in arrests of course, but it still represents a danger to peaceful demonstrators or civilians just trying to go about their business in the area. Take the most recent events in Charlottesville, VA at the University of Virginia. A racially motivated and permitted rally that attracted opposing factions (haters). Violence broke out, and someone drove a car into the crowd killing one woman and injuring many others. We have clearly been put on notice that these events will draw the wrong element. Aggressors will show up along with those who want to voice their opinions peacefully; those for whom the First Amendment was intended.

My suggestions for campuses, communities and nearby companies that are concerned about announced events such as these is to meet with the local police and find out what preventive measures are being considered. Also, given the nature of the event, would authorities consider not granting the demonstration permits because of the public safety concern it represents. In the wake of the Charlottesville incident, Texas A&M announced it had canceled the “White Lives Matter” rally that had been scheduled for 9/11/17 on their campus. Good for them. One can never absolutely say that something violent might have happened, but common sense should prevail.

There are some things to consider when preparing for an event that could become emotionally charged. The following are just a few suggestions and are not an exhaustive list:

  • Establish a rapport with the local police and get briefed on security precautions.
  • Seek the assistance of an investigative service that will assist with open-source monitoring of the Internet sites and social media channels typically used in the planning of such events. It is amazing what people will spout off about on the internet, often with threatening overtones.
  • Based on what you find out from the local police, determine whether your company should contract out for extra security, intelligence gathering and social media monitoring, photographic evidence collection, executive or personal protection and other response options.
  • If the event is planned on your property, consider the physical location and whether it might be susceptible to a vehicular attack similar to what happened in Charlottesville. What barriers should be considered as a defense or at least a deterrent? (Refer to my blog in April)

Observation– It is sad we need to have a “white lives matter” movement and a “black lives matter” movement. Why not “lives matter”- period!

For more about AFIMAC services that can help during event planning, check out our website at www.afimacglobal.com.

 

Technorati Tags: , , , ,

Domestic Violence Can Lead to Workplace Active Shooters?

November 28th, 2016 Comments off

In a recent client assessment for active shooter response preparedness, I asked the question whether any act of lethal violence had ever occurred at the facility. The response was no, but a case of spousal abuse had taken place in the parking lot across the street – their employee parking lot!

It is not always the disgruntled former employee who engages in active shooter massacres. Domestic violence that builds up over time can lead to such tragedies as well. Because of this, your workplace violence policy should address the reporting of domestic abuse as a requirement, not just a suggestion. This includes the observation of it happening to a co-worker. The policy should give clear reasons why this is necessary, and perhaps list examples of cases where domestic violence exploded within the workplace. Did you know that 74% of the reported cases of domestic abuse also reported that some of the abuse actually took place in the victim’s work area? Consider that even if an abused spouse or partner secures a restraining order for the home, or if the victim moves, the next most predictable place to find that victim is at work. Now others are exposed to the danger!

It used to be that companies did not want to get involved with domestic abuse experienced by one of their employees. There was a ‘check your personal problems at the door’ attitude. That demeanor is now flat out dangerous. The violent spouse or partner in a fit of rage, seeking the victim at their workplace, does not always confine the violence to just the victim. The company or organization has a moral and legal responsibility to be aware of such abusive activity and foresee that it could enter the workplace and become everyone’s problem. The courts will certainly look at it that way, should an incident occur in the workplace and someone else is hurt.

If the victim’s co-workers are aware of the abuse, then the organization needs to be aware of it too. Therefore, your policy needs to make all of your employees aware of their responsibility to report such a situation for a discrete investigation. Besides doing the right thing to help the victim employee, your knowledge of the abuse, and subsequent actions taken to protect that individual and the work environment will become part of your defense. It might even prevent a violent incident. Options could include:

  • Counseling or other Employee Assistance Program (EAP) intervention
  • Relocating the affected employee within the office to a new workspace
  • Changing their schedule to avoid nighttime parking
  • Transferring them to another facility

Make some accommodations that will either help with the problem or reduce the likelihood that the problem will manifest itself at work in a violent manner. OSHA’s general duty clause maintains the expectation that the workplace is made safe from foreseeable dangers and this is one of them.

Please explore our online training courses available at www.imac-training.com for workplace violence prevention courses as well as other security disciplines.

Technorati Tags: , , , ,

  • LinkedIn
  • YouTube