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https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Responding-to-San-Bernardino.aspxResponding to San BernardinoGP0|#28ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997;L0|#028ae3eb9-d865-484b-ac9f-3dfacb4ce997|Strategic Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a43444652017-05-01T04:00:00Zhttps://adminsm.asisonline.org/pages/holly-gilbert-stowell.aspx, Holly Gilbert Stowell<p>​Fourteen people were shot and killed during a holiday party at the Inland Regional Center (IRC) in San Bernardino, California, on December 2, 2015. The incident was eventually classified as an act of terrorism, because the shooters had ties to the Islamic State. </p><p>Employees of the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health had gathered for an employee training and luncheon in the morning hours when the male shooter, who was also employed by the county, and his wife opened fire. In addition to the 14 killed, 22 county health workers were injured, and hundreds were evacuated from the IRC. </p><p>Assistant Chief of Police Eric McBride tells Security Management that his department was immediately reliant on outside organizations for help in the aftermath. “We had several hundred people, including victims that weren’t wounded, from the scene, and witnesses that needed to be transported to an offsite location so they could be interviewed,” he says. </p><p>The department has a longstanding relationship with a local church that can seat several thousand people in its worship area. “We’ve used their facility in the past for training…so we were able to call them up and were able to have people transported by buses to that church,” McBride says. “It was a large location where they could be secured, away from prying eyes.”</p><p>The school district’s emergency manager, a sworn police officer, arrived at the IRC and began coordinating school bus routes to transport people to the church for interviews with law enforcement. The police department also solicited the help of Omnitrans, the San Bernardino regional bus service, for transport. “Everybody that survived was transported from the scene within about 45 minutes of the incident,” he says. </p><p>Conducting witness interviews as soon as possible is paramount to an investigation, McBride explains, so the quick coordination helped greatly in the overall response. It was also beneficial to have the witnesses spread out in a large facility. “It’s important to somewhat isolate [witnesses] so they don’t hear each other provide their statements,” he says. “Their statements need to be pure, and not be influenced by what someone else says.” </p><p>McBride notes that in the chaos of an active shooter event, friends and family are understandably anxious to locate their loved ones. However, many survivors leave their cellphones behind and are unable to communicate their safety. Law enforcement disseminated information through social media that status updates on survivors and victims would be given by the police  only at a nearby community recreational center. This kept people and media from swarming the church after word had gotten out that interviews were taking place there. </p><p>The San Bernardino suspects were still being actively pursued by police in the hours after the shooting. This element of uncertainty among the public made communication even more critical for the department, McBride explains. </p><p>The police set up a media staging area outside a Hilton Garden Inn a few miles south of the IRC, and kept a public information officer there throughout the day to answer any questions that came up between the regular press conferences.</p><p>The department also kept up with the latest news so that they were prepared for anything.</p><p>“Before each press conference, we had people who were monitoring social media and news accounts to see what information was being printed, and what people were saying,” McBride says, “so we could anticipate before each press conference what the types of questions would be.” </p><p>He adds that the police chief’s Twitter account played a primary role in disseminating information. If law enforcement had new information to release but not enough to justify staging a press conference, they would release it on the social site. “So the media knew they would only get information from us through his Twitter account,” if it wasn’t through a press conference, he notes.</p><p>Finally, McBride says the San Bernardino police worked with the local sheriff’s department, law enforcement from nearby municipalities, and outside agencies, including the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, to coordinate response efforts. “It was important to have those relationships beforehand with our city partners and other agencies within the city,” McBride notes. “Everyone worked well together, no one got out in front of each other, and we coordinated everything very well.”</p>

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https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Responding-to-San-Bernardino.aspx2017-05-01T04:00:00ZResponding to San Bernardino
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Industry-News-February-2017.aspx2017-02-01T05:00:00ZIndustry News February 2017
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/The-Role-of-School-Resource-Officers.aspx2017-01-01T05:00:00ZThe Role of School Resource Officers
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Yale-Opens-Doors.aspx2016-12-01T05:00:00ZYale Opens Doors
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/School-of-Threats.aspx2016-11-01T04:00:00ZSchool of Threats
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Lake-Brantley-High-is-School-Security-Funding-Winner.aspx2016-09-11T04:00:00ZLake Brantley High is School Security Funding Winner
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/As-School-Year-Begins,-France-Enhances-Security-at-Educational-Institutions-.aspx2016-09-06T04:00:00ZAs School Year Begins, France Enhances Security at Educational Institutions
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/School-Security-Trends.aspx2016-09-01T04:00:00ZSchool Security Trends
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Scholastic-Surveillance.aspx2016-08-01T04:00:00ZScholastic Surveillance
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Feds-Take-on-Assault.aspx2016-05-01T04:00:00ZFeds Take on Assault
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/U-Penn-Puts-Out-the-Fire.aspx2016-03-01T05:00:00ZU Penn Puts Out the Fire
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Staying-On-Message.aspx2016-02-25T05:00:00ZStaying On Message
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Book-Review---The-Handbook-for-School-Safety-and-Security.aspx2016-02-01T05:00:00ZBook Review: The Handbook for School Safety and Security
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/MIT-Launches-Cybersecurity-Professional-Education-Course.aspx2016-01-12T05:00:00ZMIT Launches Cybersecurity Professional Education Course
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Campus-ID-Gets-a-Makeover.aspx2015-11-30T05:00:00ZCampus ID Gets a Makeover
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/To-Ensure-A-Safe-Haven.aspx2015-11-20T05:00:00ZTo Ensure A Safe Haven
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/School-Funding-Winner.aspx2015-09-28T04:00:00ZSchool Funding Winner
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Private-School-Public-Protection.aspx2015-09-17T04:00:00ZPrivate School, Public Protection
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Textbook-Rescue.aspx2015-09-04T04:00:00ZTextbook Rescue
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/August-2015-Industry-News.aspx2015-08-18T04:00:00ZAugust 2015 Industry News

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https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Guns-and-Security-The-Risks-of-Arming-Security-Officers.aspxGuns and Security: The Risks of Arming Security Officers<p>​Cinemark was not to blame for the 2012 shooting at its Aurora, Colorado, movie theater where gunman James Holmes killed 12 people and injured 70 more. A jury did not find a <a href="http://www.denverpost.com/2016/05/19/cinemark-not-liable-for-aurora-theater-shooting-civil-jury-says/" target="_blank">lawyer’s argument compelling</a> that Cinemark should have provided armed security officers at the premier for <em>The Dark Knight Rises</em> because it was anticipating large crowds.</p><p>But should Cinemark have? Debates about armed security officers have flared up in the media and public discourse over the past few years. With the combination of a uniform and a firearm, armed officers may suggest a sense of security to the greater public, signaling that a business takes security and protection seriously. Others believe the presence of a gun merely stands to escalate dangerous situations.<br></p><p>The debate over the effect of firearms in such settings will not be settled anytime soon. But there are some things we do know about the consequences of arming security officers. Looking at it from an insurance perspective gives us a vantage to examine the risks and real-life consequences of arming security officers.<br></p><p><strong>Demand for Officers</strong><br></p><p>There are more than 1 million private security officers in the United States and about 650,000 police officers, according to the federal <a href="http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes333051.htm" target="_blank">Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)</a>. After several years of steep increases in the number of security officers, the field is expected to grow by a steady 5 percent every year, the BLS estimates. Private security officers, more and more, are the face of security in the United States.</p><p>In some industries, such as healthcare, armed officers are a growing presence. Crime in healthcare facilities is a serious issue, so hospitals are looking to provide stronger security. The percentage of healthcare facilities that reported staffing armed officers in 2014 was almost double the rate four years prior, according to an <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/14/us/hospital-guns-mental-health.html" target="_blank"><em>article in The New York Times. </em><br></a></p><p>“To protect their corridors, 52 percent of medical centers reported that their security personnel carried handguns and 47 percent said they used Tasers,” the Times reported, citing a 2014 survey by the International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety.<br></p><p>As discussed in a previous <em></em><a href="/Pages/The-Dangers-of-Protection-What-Makes-a-Guard-Firm-Low--or-High-Risk.aspx" target="_blank"><em>Security Management </em>article,</a> there’s been a pronounced demand for insurance for armed security officers at legal marijuana facilities. We can always expect there to be demand for armed officers at government facilities, though the demand at schools has decreased slightly.<br></p><p><strong>Pros and Cons of Armed Officers</strong><br></p><p>Many people perceive armed security officers favorably as a deterrent against violence and an assurance that a violent incident can be quickly quelled. From a client’s standpoint, it offers a perception of higher protection.</p><p>Armed security officers are widely accepted as warranted in certain locations where the threat level matches the use of force. Government contracts and high-profile corporate executives are protected by highly trained armed officers. At banks, the risk of robbery also justifies an armed officer.<br></p><p>But from an insurance and risk standpoint, it is difficult to craft a convincing argument for armed security officers in many settings. The presence of a gun is not proven to de-escalate a situation in every environment, and it is unlikely to deter violent and determined individuals. The presence of an additional firearm—even in an officer’s hands—only stands to increase the risk of casualties. This is particularly true of public or crowded environments, like stadiums, schools, and restaurants.<br></p><p>By looking at insurance claims, it’s clear that when a security officer discharges his or her gun, the resulting claims are serious. There is a big difference between an officer using mace and an officer using a gun. Claims resulting from the use of firearms are likely to breach insurance policy limits, so firms employing armed security officers are wise to purchase higher limits of liability than firms not employing armed officers.<br></p><p>When someone is shot by a security officer, his—or his estate—will likely sue the business that contracted the officer. And the security firm and officer are going to be brought into the suit as well—no matter how well-trained the officer. If it goes to trial, it is very rare for a judge and jury to believe use of the weapon was justified. It is almost always perceived as excessive force.<br></p><p>The insurance marketplace for security firms is very small, and employing armed officers reduces the market even further. This means firms that provide armed officers will be paying a higher premium for less coverage; they will most likely be relegated to the surplus lines insurance market, which can mean more policy exclusions. Therefore, it’s important for the security firm to weigh the increased costs and policy limitations of taking on an armed contract.<br></p><p><strong>Mitigating Risks of Armed Officers</strong><br></p><p>If a client insists on armed officers, there are steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of an officer discharging his or her weapon. </p><p>All officers should be checked against lists of individuals who are not permitted to carry firearms, in addition to the usual criminal background check. For armed posts, staff them with off-duty or former law enforcement officers; police receive extensive firearms training, as well as other training that helps them de-escalate challenging situations.<br></p><p>Consider local or state licensing requirements for armed security officers—they can vary by municipality. In some states, armed officers are not required to have special firearms training. For those states that do, officers and clients can be protected by ensuring that officers are trained to use firearms. Situational training, which is recommended for all officers, is particularly important for armed security officers as it teaches them to understand a judicious use of force for the environment they serve.<br></p><p>There are no easy, blanket answers to the question of whether to arm security officers. But looking at the risks and financial implications might help security leaders make decisions on a case-by-case basis.<br></p><p><em>Tory Brownyard is the president of Brownyard Group, a program administrator that pioneered liability insurance for security guard firms more than 60 years ago. He can be reached at tbrownyard@brownyard.com or 1-800-645-5820.</em><br></p><p><br></p>GP0|#cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8;L0|#0cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8|Physical Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/Surveillance-and-Stereotypes.aspxSurveillance and Stereotypes<p>​Juveniles make up 40 percent of the shoplifters in the United States. Shoplifters, in total, contribute to billions of dollars of loss each year, according to the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention’s 2014 report <em>Shop­lifting Statistics.</em></p><p>To combat adolescent shoplifting, according to the report, retailers depend on private security officers combined with other security measures, including security cameras, observation mirrors, and radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags. </p><p>The key to apprehending juveniles during or after shoplifting, however, is to correctly determine whom to surveil. Security personnel often rely on a combination of common underlying physical characteristics—race, gender, and age—and behavioral indices—glancing at clerks nervously, assessing security measures, and loitering—to distinguish shoppers from potential shoplifters. </p><p>Are these surveillance decisions a result of bias? To find out, the authors conducted original academic research funded by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice of the City University of New York on how stereotypes play into who is suspected of shoplifting, how that suspect is dealt with, and what private security can do to limit discriminatory practices.​</p><h4>Existing Data</h4><p>A 2003 Journal of Experimental Psychology article, “The Influence of Schemas, Stimulus Ambiguity, and Interview Schedule on Eyewitness Memory Over Time,” which discussed research findings and lawsuits against retailers, concluded that stereotypes of juvenile shoplifters may unduly influence security officers to target juveniles on the basis of their physical characteristics, rather than their behaviors.</p><p>Over the past 20 years, the media has reported on cases in which the retail industry engaged in discriminatory practices. This is known as consumer racial profiling (CRP), “the use of race and or ethnicity to profile customers.” According to a 2011 study in the Criminal Justice Review, “Public Opinion on the Use of Consumer Racial Profiling to Identify Shoplifters: An Exploratory Study,” officers sometimes use CRP to determine which juvenile shoppers are potential or actual thieves. </p><p>Most people develop negative stereotypes about juvenile thieves through exposure to various types of media, particularly when they reside in areas that contain few minorities. The media has the unique ability to both shape and perpetuate society’s beliefs about which juveniles typically commit offenses through its selective coverage of crimes. </p><p>It is also common for the media to portray adolescents—particularly boys—as criminals. Biases are then used, whether consciously or unconsciously, in the private sector by retailers and security officers to target shoppers, and in the public sector by those in the legal system, including law enforcement officers, prosecutors, judges, and even legislators, to arrest and prosecute thieves.</p><p>The consequences of applying discriminatory practices can be seen in the private sector through lawsuits against retailers. Ethnic minority shoppers purport that they were targeted through excessive surveillance—and even through false arrests. </p><p>Researchers have shown that this automated bias occurs even when observers were trained to focus on behavioral cues, and it persists despite findings that shoplifting occurs across racial and ethnic groups, according to the 2004 Justice Quarterly article “Who Actually Steals? A Study of Covertly Observed Shoplifters.”</p><p>Stereotypes also affect retailers’ decisions on how to handle shoplifters, either formally by involving the police, or informally. The results of accumulated discrimination, accrued during each step in the legal process—initial involvement of police, decision to prosecute, conviction, and sentencing—continue in the legal system. This is evidenced by the disproportionate number of African- and Latin-American boys shown in the apprehension and arrest statistics of juvenile thieves, compared to their representation in the population, according to Our Children, Their Children: Confronting Racial and Ethnic Differences in American Juvenile Justice, a book published by the Chicago University Press. ​</p><h4>Current Research</h4><p>To test the premise that there is a widespread stereotype of the typical juvenile thief and shoplifter, our research team obtained information from young adults in two diverse areas:  97 psychology-major college students in a small city in the U.S. state of Kansas, and 156 security and emergency management majors at a college in a large city in New York state. </p><p><strong>Shoplifter profile. </strong>The psychology-major students were 83 percent European American. The rest of the students were represented as follows: 5 percent African American, 2 percent Asian American, 1 percent Latin American, and 9 percent of mixed or unknown descent.</p><p>The security and emergency management major students—72 percent of whom were male—came from a variety of backgrounds: 31 percent European American, 37 percent Latin American, 19 percent African American, 9 percent Asian American, and 2 percent Middle Eastern American.</p><p>Participants in both locations were asked to guess the common physical characteristics of a typical juvenile shoplifter—age, gender, ethnicity or race, and socioeconomic status. </p><p>The stereotypical juvenile shoplifters described by both the Kansas and New York respondents were remarkably similar: male, aged 14 to 17, and from lower- to middle-class families of African-American, Latin-American, or European-American descent. The two samples also indicated that the stereotypical thief was likely to have short or medium length brown or black hair and an identifying mark—such as a piercing. </p><p>These findings show commonality in the prevalence of certain physical characteristics, despite the diversity of the two groups of respondents, and demonstrate that American society has a well-developed juvenile shoplifter stereotype.</p><p><strong>Decision processes. </strong>After determining the stereotype, the research team considered whether juvenile shoplifter stereotypes affected respondents’ decisions. The goal was to determine the degree to which the respondents believed that physical characteristics influenced the security guards’ decisions regarding whom to surveil, and what consequences to apply when a youth was caught stealing.</p><p>The New York respondents read a brief scenario describing a juvenile shoplifter as either male or female and from one of five backgrounds: European American, African American, Asian American, Latin American, or Middle Eastern American. However, the description of the overt behaviors by the juvenile was the same for every scenario—selecting and returning shirts in a rack, glancing around the store, and stuffing a shirt into a backpack.</p><p>Respondents provided their opinions about the degree to which the security officer in the scenario relied on physical characteristics in surveilling a juvenile, and whether the retail manager and security officer should impose informal or formal sanctions on the shoplifter. Researchers reasoned that respondents should draw identical conclusions for surveillance and sanctions if they were simply evaluating the juvenile shoplifters’ behaviors, but that students would have different recommendations for these choices if their racial or ethnic stereotypes were activated.</p><p>Respondents who indicated a preference for applying informal sanctions did so more frequently for girls of African-American and Middle Eastern-American descent. These respondents also assessed that the officer described in the scenario based his or her surveillance decisions on physical characteristics. No other gender differences for race or ethnicity were notable when considering reliance on physical characteristics.</p><p>Stereotypes also affected decisions on how to sanction the shoplifter. Respondents were given the option of implementing one of four informal sanctions: speak to the juvenile, call parents to pick up the juvenile, get restitution, or ban the youth from the store. Their selection of the least severe sanction—talk to the juvenile—was doled out at a higher rate for boys than for girls of each ethnicity except European Americans, which did not differ.</p><p>The moderate level sanction—call the youth’s parents—was selected more for girls than for boys of African and Latin descent. The most severe level sanction—ban the youth from the store—was selected more for boys than for girls of African descent. However, it was selected more for girls than for boys of Asian, European, and Middle Eastern descent.<img src="/ASIS%20SM%20Callout%20Images/0417%20Feature%202%20Chart%201.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:510px;" /></p><p>Respondents who indicated a preference for applying formal sanctions attributed physical characteristics to the guards’ surveillance decision for girls more than for boys of Latin descent; gender differences were not apparent for the other ethnicities. </p><p>Respondents were also given five formal sanctions for the youths: involve the police, prosecute the theft as larceny, impose a fine, give the youth diversion or community service, or put the incident on the youth’s criminal record. Their selection of the least severe sanction—involve the police—was endorsed more for boys than for girls of Asian, European, and Latin descent, but more for girls than for boys of African descent. No gender difference was apparent for youths of Middle Eastern descent.</p><p>The most severe sanction—diversion or community service—was preferred more for boys than for girls of African descent. A small percentage of respondents endorsed a criminal record for the theft of a shirt, but only for girls of African and European descent and for boys of Middle Eastern descent.</p><p>Finally, a comparison of our data revealed that respondents believed informal—rather than formal—consequences should be imposed for girls rather than for boys of Asian and European descent, and for boys rather than for girls of Latin descent. ​<img src="/ASIS%20SM%20Callout%20Images/0417%20Feature%202%20Chart%202.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:519px;" /></p><h4>Lessons Learned</h4><p>Our findings clearly demonstrate that people have stereotypes about juvenile shoplifters. They also showed that people unconsciously use the typical physical characteristics of gender and race or ethnicity associated with their criminal stereotypes to make decisions and recommendations, such as whom to surveil and how to handle a shoplifting incident. Otherwise, there would not have been a difference in how the juvenile shoplifter was processed or punished, because the behaviors exhibited by all of the juveniles were identical across scenarios.</p><p>Consumer racial profiling is a defective filtering system that may direct private security officers’ attention to characteristics that are not reflective of actual shoplifting conduct. Our data suggests that CRP not only hurts retail businesses by discouraging minority consumers from shopping in their stores, but also simultaneously prevents security officers from apprehending shoplifters.</p><p>Other research, such as from “Juvenile Shoplifting Delinquency: Findings from an Austrian Study” published in the 2014 Journal for Police Science and Practice, shows that only 10 percent of juveniles are caught shoplifting. Even more disconcerting, the typical shoplifter steals on average 48 to 150 times before being apprehended. Clearly, retailers need a better strategy if they are to reduce loss due to shoplifting.</p><p>Another issue that was addressed was the decision to involve the legal system. Many businesses, despite having posted prosecution warnings, reported only about half of the adolescent shoplifters they caught to the police. </p><p>Retailers instead focus on minimizing loss and negative publicity, and may rationalize against reporting the offense to the police because they do not want to stigmatize the adolescent or because they consider it a one-time incident, particularly when the juvenile admits to the theft and then pays for or returns the items, according to the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Community Oriented Policing Services.</p><p>These beliefs, however, may be misguided. Though current research is scarce, a 1992 study—The Sociology of Shoplifting: Boosters and Snitches Today—indicated that 40 to 50 percent of apprehended adolescent shoplifters reported that they continued shoplifting. </p><p>There are benefits for retailers who involve the legal system, especially for informal police sanctions. </p><p>First, criminal justice diversion programs and psychological treatment and educational programs treatment may reduce recidivism. For example, shoplifters who attended and completed a diversion program had significantly fewer re-arrests compared to those who failed to complete or did not attend, a DOJ study found.</p><p>Second, the private sector needs the support of the public sector to reduce shoplifting. Shoplifters can be given an opportunity to participate in first offender programs and, upon completion of classes on the effects of shoplifting, have their charges dismissed or even erased. ​</p><h4>Recommendations</h4><p>Retailers and private security officers need training to make them aware of their own biases and how their stereotypes affect their choices. They also need training to learn which behavioral indices are most effective in distinguishing shoppers from shoplifters. </p><p>If retailers do not make significant changes in guiding their employees—particularly security officers—towards objective measures of vigilance to prevent shoplifting, their financial loss will continue to be in the billions of dollars. </p><p>Private security officers must be taught how to treat all potential shoplifters, regardless of their gender, in the same way to prevent making mistakes and subjecting retailers to lawsuits for discriminatory security practices.</p><p>Overcoming unconscious biases is difficult. Prior to specialized training in bias identification and behavioral profiling, it is important to determine the biases of security officers. Self-assessment measures similar to the ones the researchers used in their study can be administered. </p><p>The officers should also keep records that specify each incident of shoplifting, what behaviors drew their attention to warrant surveillance, what act occurred to provoke them to approach the juvenile shoplifter, the items that were taken, the method used, the shoplifter’s demographics, how the situation was handled, who made the decision, and reasons for the decision. The officers should then review these records with their retail managers.</p><p>Retailers should also implement a mandatory training program to provide private security officers with the tools needed to identify shoplifting behaviors to increase detection and reduce shrink. </p><p>The incident records could be introduced and used to help identify the impact biases have on private security professionals’ decisionmaking about juvenile shoplifters. It would also help security guards learn the various types of suspicious behaviors that shoplifters exhibit, such as juveniles who make quick glances at staff, examine items in remote aisles, monitor security cameras and mirrors, and purposefully draw employees’ attention away from others.</p><p>Additionally, a practical component would be to show surveillance videos of the behaviors exhibited by juvenile shoplifters of different gender and race or ethnicity. In this way, the findings of past studies showing the insignificance of race, ethnicity, or gender can be learned through real-world examples.  </p><p>--<br></p><p><em><strong>Dr. Lauren R. Shapiro </strong>is an associate professor in the Department of Security, Fire, and Emergency Management at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She has published several journal articles and chapters on the role of stereotypes in perception and memory for crime and criminals. <strong>Dr. Marie-Helen (Maria) Maras</strong> is an associate professor at the Department of Security, Fire, and Emergency Management at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She is the author of several books, including Cybercriminology; Computer Forensics: Cybercriminals, Laws, and Evidence; Counterterrorism; and Transnational Security.   ​</em></p>GP0|#cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8;L0|#0cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8|Physical Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465
https://sm.asisonline.org/Pages/How-to-Build-a-Better-Security-Space.aspxHow to Build a Better Security Space<p>​Like many campus law enforcement agencies, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG) Police Department spent years relegated to locations that were not conducive to providing quality service.</p><p>The department was housed in four separate locations that were formerly a bank, a dentist’s office, a cannery, and a warehouse that had served as a hardware distribution facility. For the 36 sworn police officers and 28 nonsworn staff, being spread across multiple locations made daily communications and operations burdensome.</p><p>The need for a new, unified facility had been apparent for years, but it always seemed to be “next on the list.” A convergence of events, however, moved the need to the top of the list in 2011 as the university began an expansion into an area previously thought to be inaccessible because it was on the other side of a large rail corridor to the south of campus.</p><p>The expansion included a pedestrian underpass connecting the two sides of campus and a student recreation center that would require the demolition of the old cannery building, one of the department’s four sites.</p><p>University administration believed that a new police facility on the south side of campus, next to the new underpass, would be a visual assurance of safety. Additionally, the old dentist’s office had originally been purchased as a transition space for departments whose facilities were under renovation. Having the police department in that transitional space was adversely affecting other campus projects.</p><p>Finally, the need became most apparent when conducting critical incident response exercises. No space on campus satisfied the needs of the university during times of crisis. Several exercises, including active shooter, tornado strike, and hazardous material spills, resulted in the same after-action item: the university needed a space designed for critical incident response.</p><p>Selecting an architect was the most critical part of the new facility planning. During the interview process for designers, the university looked to a firm with experience in designing public safety facilities. </p><p>The university spoke with a variety of clients about ADW Architects of Charlotte, North Carolina, including state construction officials. What impressed the university most was the reputation the firm had for spending time with the employees who would work in the new facility, and mapping out their daily operations. </p><p>While other firms interviewed provided presentations, only ADW spoke from experience about needs assessments of public safety agencies.​</p><h4>Programming</h4><p>The first step in the design process was programming—the process of determining space needs for each individual function in the organization and how to use that space most effectively. The process helped determine how much space the UNCG Police Department needed to conduct its business most effectively. </p><p>To begin programming, a design team was created. Representatives from the police department, the designer, purchasing, the agency construction and design staff, and a university technology team served as the core decision makers in the design process.</p><p>Members of the design team spent many hours with various members of the department. They followed officers on assignments and observed the arrest process. They sat with communications personnel to note how dispatchers interacted with the public, the officers, and each other. They shadowed detectives as they interviewed suspects and conducted case follow-up. And they tracked evidence through collection, initial storage, processing, and final storage.</p><p>The programming process provided the first opportunity for input by the department on design. A detailed report on each room included the square footage, number of outlets, necessary data and phone ports, lighting, and probable furnishings. </p><p>It was critical at this stage to involve those employees who would be occupying or controlling specific areas because decisions made early on would influence actions during construction. </p><p>For instance, the type and placement of furniture in a conference room might determine the location of floor boxes for electric and data outlets. An office would need a carpet, while a canine kennel would need a nonslip, epoxy floor. Based on input, the individual programming reports were adjusted to reflect final room and space configurations.</p><p>Another important part of programming included visiting recently constructed facilities that served a similar function. One of the main advantages of this process was to discover what the agency would have done differently. An evaluation of the positive aspects of their design is important, but the list of “I wish we had…” items helps designers avoid mistakes.</p><p>Additionally, visiting recently constructed facilities allowed for an evaluation of the most current technology. During a visit to the police department in Apex, North Carolina, the design team observed an interview room recording system activated by the use of a key. The team had already discussed the concept of using card access throughout the new UNCG Police facility. Discussions with the Apex department’s vendor revealed that they were introducing a card-activated system that could integrate UNCG’s card access technology.</p><p>The result of the programming process was a list of spaces that were needed to perform daily operations along with the space needed for each one. The initial estimate of the building needs was 31,000 square feet, but university construction officials stepped in and required that 4,000 square feet be eliminated to match the budget. This reduced the final area of the facility to 27,000 square feet.​</p><h4>Design</h4><p>After programming was complete, the architects turned individual room reports into a building concept. For architects, the process is more “art meets engineering,” but to everyone else, there is a sense of mystery as to how all the pieces are put together to create an aesthetically pleasing design. </p><p>A significant part of the process was the input of the governing body and the senior management of the university. Designers at this stage must navigate an often politically charged environment while maintaining the original overall concept.</p><p>For example, designers did not want to have “UNCG Police” on the façade of the building because that did not conform with university specifications. The Board of Trustees for the university, however, wanted the nature of the building clearly visible to the public. The end result was backlit lettering with “UNCG Police” on both the east and west rooflines. </p><p>It was at this point in the process that interior design and furniture selection took place. Most architects have experienced interior-design professionals on the payroll, and they should be consulted because this can be—by far—the most confusing and mentally taxing part of the process. The combinations of colors and finishes were almost infinite. </p><p>The design team asked the interior designer to select two to four schemes and present them. This took the form of design boards that had small samples of paint colors, tiles, carpet, and counter tops. The department then selected the most desirable interior and made modifications based on that design.​</p><h4>Construction</h4><p>The next step was to begin the bidding process—required under North Carolina law—and select a construction company. To allow maximum flexibility in budgeting, the bid asked for pricing on several “add-alternate” items. These add-alternate items were above minimum bid, but were preferred by the designers. Some examples included polished block walls instead of plain block walls or poured terrazzo flooring instead of tile. UNCG was fortunate that all add-alternate items were included in the final bid and covered by the original budget.</p><p>In construction, the phrase “timing is everything” is true. Ground was broken on the construction site in December with a plan to schedule most of the concrete and masonry work during the summer months. </p><p>But the first scoop of earth from the backhoe brought bad news; the initial site testing missed significant soil contamination. Research uncovered that the site had once been a petroleum distillery. The resulting delay put masonry and concrete work in the cold winter months, and cleanup cost $600,000 in soil removal and remediation. </p><p>This one oversight led to a one-year delay in construction. An important lesson learned was to insist on the most detailed soil testing available before beginning construction.</p><p>Once construction begins, the most important advice to any chief or department head is to be there, on site, every day. If you are not there, decisions will be made without your input that may have repercussions in daily operations.</p><p>When you are on site, pay attention to every detail. Once a concrete floor is poured, it is difficult to go back and install a floor box with electricity. Blueprints are created with best practices in engineering, but there are times when those designs are not practical for operations. Observation during construction is the best way to catch those inconsistencies between form and function, such as when wiring conduit and air ductwork needed to occupy the same space. </p><p>After construction begins, changes can be made to the design, but there will be a cost. Construction companies charge a premium for change orders. Construction budgets contain contingency funds for changes, but those funds are limited. A cost-benefit analysis must take place when considering change orders.​</p><h4>Transition</h4><p>Making the transition from previous facilities to the new one required a great deal of coordination. Moving a modern public safety agency required considerations for emergency phone lines, alarm monitoring, radio communications, and a host of other critical infrastructure items. The UNCG Police Department created operational plans, much like those drafted for a large-scale event, to structure and schedule the move.</p><p>Even with advanced planning, critical errors can have a profound effect. A scheduling error in the phone company’s computer system caused the department’s phones to go off-line for nearly 16 hours. Emergency text and e-mail messages to the community notified members to call 911 for emergencies. The county 911 center then notified the department of a call over radio or via cell phone.</p><p>To help avoid these problems, a transition team is critical. Key areas, such as field operations, communications, and IT, should all have assigned roles. </p><p>One role that might be overlooked is that of delivery manager. The department was fortunate to have all new furniture purchased for the building. That meant multiple companies making multiple deliveries, each needing set times for installation. </p><p>In addition, the North Carolina State Construction office had strict guidelines for the receipt and inspection of furniture at the university. Every item had to be inspected as it was unpacked and installed to avoid accusations that damages occurred after installation. A secondary check occurred to doc­ument damage that occurred dur­ing installation. </p><p>The transition plan should also prioritize the scheduling of who moves and when. In the UNCG transition, communications personnel moved first, then field operations, and finally, administration and support functions. </p><p>Considerations should be given to the times when equipment becomes operational. For instance, the timing of the switch-over of fire alarm monitoring dictated that communications be the first in line for transition.</p><p>The final transition step was to begin tracking correction items. Defects in construction or flaws in design began to reveal themselves as people begin to occupy the space. </p><p>UNCG used a Google spreadsheet that was shared with the designer and builder to do this. Each entry tracked the location, a brief description of the issue, the party responsible for remediation, the date reported, current status, and the date of completion.​</p><h4>Celebration</h4><p>Once the construction and transition were complete, it was important to mark the occasion. When the building was open for business in 2015, it was a milestone for the agency, its personnel, and the people they serve. It was also an opportunity to thank those involved and challenge the employees to demonstrate that the time, money, and effort spent on the building be repaid with excellent service.</p><p>It is rare to have the opportunity to design and construct a new facility from the ground up. Careful planning and attention to detail will make the process rewarding, and those rewards will be appreciated for many years to come.  </p><p>--<br></p><p><em><strong>James C. Herring, Jr.,</strong> is the chief of police and director of public safety and emergency management at Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky. He retired as chief of police for the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG). He has a master of public affairs from UNCG and is a member of the faculty in the College of Security and Criminal Justice at the University of Phoenix.</em></p>GP0|#cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8;L0|#0cd529cb2-129a-4422-a2d3-73680b0014d8|Physical Security;GTSet|#8accba12-4830-47cd-9299-2b34a4344465