As we write this post, we are following yet another tragic event in the United States. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families, and friends of the mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, which took place on Sunday of this week.
There is an unfortunate reality that our industry, especially, must be prepared for. It is the possibility of a mass shooting or a terrorist act in any place where people gather.
It is with this in mind that Cambridge Security Services has refined our efforts to provide the highest quality and most capable security officers in the industry. This October, our Florida Region performed active shooter and terrorism awareness training for all of their officers assigned to religious institutions. We started with these officers because Cambridge Security is a preeminent provider of security services for houses of worship and faith-based educational institutions in the United States.
The all-day training seminar covered a range of topics including:
• The emergence of terrorism and mass shootings
• Evolving threats
• Review of recent terror attacks and leanings
• Use of force
• Recognizing potential violence – profile of an active shooter
• Tactical considerations
• Cover vs. concealment
• Disarming a shooter
• Clearing rooms and buildings
Our primary focus was on tactics—how to respond in an active shooter situation. After the lecture and practical sessions, Cambridge officers were challenged to put everything they had learned together. Utilizing 2,000 square feet of office space, our Training and Development team guided our officers through a reality-based active shooter scenario. Officers were provided airsoft pistols and had to navigate their way through the space while instructors induced stress with loud noises and live ‘victims’. Airsoft pistols are replica weapons that fire round plastic projectiles at speeds exceeding 350 feet per second.
When asked about the training, Jim D’Arcy, Cambridge Security’s Chief Operating Officer said, ‘Our commitment to the training and development of our officers is second-to-none in this industry. I’m afraid there is a new normal in the United States. As a provider of world-class security, we can either accept that and do nothing, or prepare. Here at Cambridge, we’re training the best—for the worst.’