Connections - Winter 2018 - 17

WHAT IS AN active security threat?
For the purpose of this article,
a working definition becomes
anytime a serious life threatening
security incident is about to
happen, is in progress and/or
is expanding. These incidents
include such threats as workplace
violence, active shooters and
killers, targeted ideological
violence and even terrorism. In
a nutshell, you are in the wrong
place at that wrong time!
During my career, I have had
the blessing of speaking, training
and consulting with major
organizations about security
matters and threat management.
As a certified trainer in active
shooter response and emergency
management, I have seen
firsthand the true need to be
prepared for this type of event.
Unfortunately, one of the biggest
hurdles to overcome is apathy
of the individual. People believe
"it will never happen here." This
mindset turns to chaos and
carnage when an active security
threat, such as an active shooter,
emerges. In fact, it is that apathy
that inspires me to train
even harder.
There are many approaches to
enhancing your security protocols
and personal protection when
security threats become active.
Here are my Top 2:

1. Situational Assessments
This is one of the simplest
approaches to personal security
one can use. Situational
assessments are all about
evaluating your environment
and paying attention to your
surroundings. Many who are
oblivious to their surroundings
become victims. Taking just a few
moments to look and assess the

Many just hope for the best, but
that is not enough. Preparation
is as easy as increasing
awareness, planning a response,
and executing that response.
places you enter and evaluate a
quick emergency response once
you are inside could save
your life.
For example, look for suspicious
individuals standing around
doorways or inside cars lurking
around the parking lot. Gauge
it first, then do not go inside if
you see something alarming. At
your job, restaurants, church or
anytime out in public, take time
to identify the key exits in an
emergency. Where do you sit?
Are you paying attention to who
enters? How will you escape?
Where will you take shelter or
cover? I recommend this whole
heartedly. I conduct my own quick
mental risk assessment almost
everywhere I go nowadays, not
out of paranoia, but out
of precaution.

GET READY - Situational
awareness meets risk management.
For example, if you see something
suspicious (or something just not
right), you could be putting yourself
at risk by even going inside or
remaining in a location too long.
GET UP - Move and be ready to
move out of harm's way as rapidly
as possible.
GET OUT - Will you have the
mindset to escape when a threat
turns active? Did you see the fire
exit? Where are the doors? What
could you hide behind that could
provide cover (not just hide). Also
think of a "Plan B" if something
does not go as you expected.
You are ultimately responsible
for your own personal safety. At the
end of the day, only YOU can make
the decisions to save yourself and
others. The awareness you have
and the plan you make will be the
difference between life and death.
By considering these two proactive
strategies you can formulate
an instant action plan almost
everywhere you go.

2. Prepare Your Plan
My security management firm
takes time to review and learn
from case studies that involve
incidents of mass murder, active
shooters and terror. Many of
these studies have been beneficial
to my training seminars as I
try to bridge the gap on how to
survive an active threat. One
common theme I train for is to
prepare and plan for it. Many just
hope for the best, but that is not
enough. Preparation is as easy as
increasing awareness, planning
a response, and executing
that response. The plans for
individuals do not have to be
difficult, just realistic.

J. Tripp Mitchell, CPP, is CEO of the
professional security management
firm Guardstar, LLC. He is an
experienced investigator and security
practitioner with a demonstrated
track record of providing results and
effective leadership as well as training
in professional and academic settings.
Tripp spoke at the 2016 GSAE Annual
Meeting and the GSAE Luncheon on
February 21.

connections >

17



Connections - Winter 2018

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Connections - Winter 2018

GSAE News & Events
New Members
Living Legends: Jim Fowler, CAE; David Ellis, CAE; and Tara Morrison, CAE, CMP
Moving a Convention with Two Weeks’ Notice
What to Do First in an Active Security Threat
GSAE Presents Annual Awards
GSAE 100th Anniversary Gala & Holiday Luncheon
Meetings Tips & Tricks
Destination: Sandestin, Panama City, Gulf Shores & Orange Beach
Choices: Graduation Has Meaning
Advertiser.com
Index of Advertisers
Connections - Winter 2018 - Intro
Connections - Winter 2018 - cover1
Connections - Winter 2018 - cover2
Connections - Winter 2018 - 3
Connections - Winter 2018 - 4
Connections - Winter 2018 - 5
Connections - Winter 2018 - GSAE News & Events
Connections - Winter 2018 - 7
Connections - Winter 2018 - New Members
Connections - Winter 2018 - Living Legends: Jim Fowler, CAE; David Ellis, CAE; and Tara Morrison, CAE, CMP
Connections - Winter 2018 - 10
Connections - Winter 2018 - 11
Connections - Winter 2018 - Moving a Convention with Two Weeks’ Notice
Connections - Winter 2018 - 13
Connections - Winter 2018 - 14
Connections - Winter 2018 - 15
Connections - Winter 2018 - What to Do First in an Active Security Threat
Connections - Winter 2018 - 17
Connections - Winter 2018 - GSAE Presents Annual Awards
Connections - Winter 2018 - 19
Connections - Winter 2018 - 20
Connections - Winter 2018 - GSAE 100th Anniversary Gala & Holiday Luncheon
Connections - Winter 2018 - 22
Connections - Winter 2018 - 23
Connections - Winter 2018 - Meetings Tips & Tricks
Connections - Winter 2018 - 25
Connections - Winter 2018 - Destination: Sandestin, Panama City, Gulf Shores & Orange Beach
Connections - Winter 2018 - 27
Connections - Winter 2018 - Choices: Graduation Has Meaning
Connections - Winter 2018 - 29
Connections - Winter 2018 - Index of Advertisers
Connections - Winter 2018 - cover3
Connections - Winter 2018 - cover4
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