Church Security Consultation

18.2-283. Carrying dangerous weapon to place of religious worship.

If any person carry any gun, pistol, bowie knife, dagger or other dangerous weapon, without good and sufficient reason, to a place of worship while a meeting for religious purposes is being held at such place he shall be guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor.

Church security is increasing at houses of worship worldwide due to threats such as active shooter attacks and acts of terrorism. So to mitigate these threats, there should be a church safety plan in place and security training for staff and volunteers to help reduce the risk of an attack.

Furthermore, implementing protection measures for churches such as a security team, armed security, and security procedures are all vital components that should be considered by church leaders. It does not require the same security measures as Fort Knox, but having adequate physical protection is essential to make better protect houses of worship. Church Safety and Security need security experts that can help stakeholders formulate the best security plan.

What does a church security team do?

Some may ask, What does a church security team do? Well, the goal of the security team should be designed to help safeguard assets. Moreover, this can be accomplished by identifying professionals within the membership, such as doctors, medics, existing or former police officers, and members with military or security backgrounds. Invest in walkie-talkies. Walkie-talkies eliminate spotty cell service and scrambling to find a list of internal phone numbers. Ushers, daycare employees, and workplace staff geared up with radios can relay communications rapidly throughout the building or campus.

Why do churches have or need security officers/ protection agents?

Regrettably, churches are appealing soft targets for attackers because of their open design, accessible to all individuals, and many have weak physical security. Churches have been forced to create security strategies and ramp up training in the wake of recent attacks to Holy places. Since a white supremacist killed members of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015, Churches have started active shooter drills and security training for all staff and volunteers to include hospitality teams and ushers. Everyone is now expected to be a part of the security plan and have buy-in to the security program.

Attacks on U.S. churches by threat is becoming a significant concern. Approximately 617 worshipers have been killed in violent events throughout the United States since 1999. The number of attacks at houses of worship has increased almost every year, according to information from the Faith-Based Security Network (FBSN). The most dangerous Church shooting in modern-day history was the ambush on tiny First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas that killed 26 members of the Church. Church ministries now need staff and volunteers to serve in security. These security functions may include security handbooks, emergency plans, and training. Training will help with threat detection, crime prevention, and emergency response. So this should answer the question, “Why do churches have security?”