Safety and Security Committee
As you know the church has reopened with limited seating for worship and with attendance limitations for other activities. Covid has taken the top spot on most people’s “worry list” and has been a focal point as we work to maintain and improve our safety while in, and around our church. You may recall that pre-covid we were planning on implementing controls to manage access to the church, along with other changes to improve the safety and security of our church, staff, volunteers, congregants and everyone else who uses the church.
While the church is used less than it was pre- Covid, we still have safety and security concerns that we should address. In fact, there may be more concern now over unauthorized entry and malicious acts with some people acting desperately and irrationally due to the tensions around us. While all of the actions we originally planned are still important and will be pursued at a later time, we have decided to reduce the scope to avoid some costs at this time.
We originally planned to install electronic locks on the front/office door, the two rear doors and to lock the sanctuary after the start of Sunday morning services. We planned to provide mobile “panic buttons” that notify the police when there is an emergency situation. We also planned to have a basic intrusion detection system (similar to a basic burglar alarm).
To balance current cost, safety and security, we will only implement an electronic lock on the front/office door for use during the week to help protect our staff. Authorized people will be given access codes, or they can “ring” a video doorbell and the office staff can see who is at the door and unlock the door. We will also implement panic buttons for use by the office staff, preschool teachers and for use during Sunday services and other major activities. We will also implement an intrusion detection system to help protect the building and its contents and our staff. The Safety and Security Committee researched and conducted negotiations on services and price with multiple vendors before selecting a vendor. We will communicate their name after we receive copies of the final agreement.
Only the panic buttons will be active on Sunday mornings – you can enter and exit as you normally do on Sundays. Before any of the systems are activated, we’ll provide information on how and when they will be used. Installation will begin in early September.
On a different topic, you may have noticed the window in the door in the rear of the Sanctuary where you go down the stairs to fellowship hall is covered with a plexiglass stained glass protective sheet. This was a recommendation from a security auditor for making it more difficult for someone to break in through that window/door.
Your Safety & Security Committee – Betsey Bopp, Denise Haralson, Dave Hykes, Elva Hullihen, John Oskin, Geoff Rach, Bob Smith and Kim Stevenson. Please let one of us know if you are interested in joining!!