Houses of Worship

Houses of Worship

Security Self-Assessment

On behalf of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), thank you for using the Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment. The topics addressed here reflect assessment methodologies and recommended practices that physical security professionals in public and private sector roles use routinely.

This tool is designed to guide personnel at houses of worship through a security-focused self-assessment to understand potential vulnerabilities and identify options for consideration in mitigating those vulnerabilities. This self-assessment is a first step in building an effective security program; it is not intended to be an in-depth security assessment. After completing this process and addressing preliminary findings, houses of worship personnel may consider pursuing more detailed security assessments to explore specific issues in greater detail.

Houses of worship can use the results of this process in many ways as they partner to improve their security and manage risk. These efforts include prioritizing potential security measures, reviewing best practices and available resources, and developing investment justifications for internal budgeting processes or external grant requests.

Introduction/Instructions

This tool works well in a variety of web browsers but performs best in Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome and on a computer running Windows 7 (or later) and with Microsoft Word and Excel 97 (or later).

  1. To begin using the Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment, enter the Facility Name and Date on the Assessment Details tab, or load a previously saved Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment file to continue working on it.
    • To continue working on an existing Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment, click the "Choose File" button and locate the appropriate .txt file. Then click the "Load selected saved data" button.
  2. Click the tabs on the left to view and select answers to each question for each category.
    • Click the “+” sign to view the background, reference, and additional information for each question.
    • Click the “-” sign to hide the background, reference, and additional information for each question.
  3. Each question has either three or five answers. Select the answer that most accurately represents the house of worship. An option for consideration will appear below the range of possible answers for each question, based on the selected answer.
    • Double-click on the radio button for a selected answer to clear it and select a different answer.
    • Click the “Clear all” button at the top of each section to clear all of the selected answers in that category.
    • Click the “Clear All Data” button in the top left corner of the browser to delete all of the information entered for this Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment.
  4. Click the “Action Items” tab at any time to view the options for consideration by category.
    • Click the “Export to Excel” button to create an editable spreadsheet of the options for consideration. Instructions on how to format this file are available under this button.
  5. Click the “Create Report” tab to view and export the report.
    • Click the “Export Microsoft Word Report” button to create an editable file. Instructions on how to generate this file without Microsoft Word are available under this button.
    • The Microsoft Word report will automatically save to the Downloads folder as .doc file. The suggested process is to go to “File,” “Save As,” and save the file in a preferred folder before making any changes. The Save As file type automatically defaults to a web page. Change the Save As drop-down to a Microsoft Word format to ensure full functionality in Word.
  6. Save data for recordkeeping or future use.
    • Click the “Save Data” button in the top left corner of the browser. NOTE: Click this button only when ready to exit the tool—it is not necessary to periodically save data while using the application.
    • The data will automatically download and be saved in a .txt format. NOTE: A popup might appear to indicate the file has been downloaded and can be opened. If so, close the popup to access the saved file.
    • Browse to a location on the local drive and save the file for recordkeeping or future use (see Step 1).

Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment Details

When filling out this self-assessment, consider significant areas and assets at the house of worship. Significant areas and assets may be critical components that support the facility’s mission or unique elements of the facility. They may represent key vulnerabilities or areas of interest to an attacker. Potential significant areas and assets at a house of worship include the following:

  • Sanctuary or Primary Gathering Area: The most sacred part of a house of worship, where congregants gather for worship services, prayer, recitations, and other religious activities. Generally, the most populated area during meeting times, thus often an area for attack by an active shooter.
  • Fellowship Hall: Where congregants gather for meals, workshops, and other communal activities. May include a kitchen and eating areas or serve as a gymnasium.
  • Financial Office: Where donations are stored during and after meetings. May be targeted for theft.
  • Religious Exhibit, Display, Artifact, or Symbol: May be a permanent feature of the facility or temporarily erected for holidays or special events. May be a target for vandalism or theft.
  • Facility Vehicles: Usually vans or buses belonging to the house of worship. May be used to transport congregants and visitors to and from the facility as well as offsite activities.

Please Contact CISA at CIOCC.Physical@cisa.dhs.gov if you have any questions while performing a Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment

To begin, enter the Facility Name and Date below to start a new self-assessment, or load a previously saved Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment file to continue working on it. Then click the “Continue with Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment” button.


   Then click button   



Security / Emergency Management

Security/emergency management refers to the people, plans, and procedures that a house of worship has in place to address security issues and emergencies. Factors that contribute to the effectiveness of security and emergency management efforts at houses of worship include the designation of a security manager or security committee; existence of security and emergency operations plans; commitment to training and exercises on these plans; engaging with external partners such as first responders and working groups; and mass notification capabilities and crisis communications. Houses of worship may use different names for these plans. They may incorporate security elements into a plan that outlines the facility’s approach to operations before, during, and after an emergency, or they may have two separate plans, one focused on security and another focused on emergency operations.

To view Background, Reference, and/or More Information related to a question click the '+' icon below the options per question.

QUESTION VERY LOW LOW MEDIUM HIGH VERY HIGH
1. Does the house of worship have a security manager or security committee to make security management decisions? The house of worship does not have a security manager or committee. The house of worship has a security manager or committee, but security management activities are sporadic. The house of worship has a security manager or committee. Security management activities are regularly scheduled, but not coordinated with other committees, departments, or groups (e.g., special events planning, childcare). The house of worship has a security manager or committee. Security management activities are regularly scheduled and coordinated with other committees, departments, and groups, but additional personnel are needed to support the facility’s security mission. The house of worship has a security manager or committee. Security management activities are regularly scheduled and coordinated with other committees, departments, and groups, and staffing levels fully support the facility’s security mission.

Designate an individual as a security manager or a group of individuals as a security committee, and ensure that person or group is responsible for developing, implementing, and coordinating all security-related activities. If the manager or committee members have no security or law enforcement background, make sure they reach out to local law enforcement to become acquainted. Provide security management training and/or access to training materials and resources.

Schedule regular meetings to review security procedures and incidents.

Coordinate safety and security planning with other committees, departments, and groups.

Hire or appoint additional personnel to support the facility’s security mission.

Regularly assess the facility’s security management program. Conduct security surveys, risk assessments, and threat assessments of the facility and neighboring areas. Implement best practices based on collaborative relationships and new or updated resources.

 Background | Reference | More Information
2. Does the house of worship have a written security and emergency operations plan(s)? The house of worship does not have a written security and/or emergency operations plan(s). All security and emergency response procedures are communicated verbally and may be performed on an ad hoc basis. The house of worship has some written documentation that partially addresses safety and emergency operations policies, programs, and/or procedures (e.g., a checklist), but a comprehensive plan(s) does not exist. The house of worship has a written security and emergency operations plan(s). The security plan or portion of the plan addresses some, but not all, of the following areas: identification of threats; security force; access control; monitoring and surveillance; suspicious activity recognition and reporting; financial and cybersecurity; hiring procedures and background checks; daycare, school, and youth security (where applicable); special event and offsite excursion safety and security; and opening, locking, and closing procedures for the facility. The emergency operations plan or portion of the plan addresses some, but not all, of the following areas: threat and hazard analysis; goals and objectives; procedures for medical emergencies, bomb threats, and active shooter incidents; communication, crisis management, and media procedures; evacuation, shelter-in-place, lockout, and lockdown procedures; reunification of children and parents or guardians; and recovery and resumption of operations. The plan(s) addresses maintaining point-of-contact lists, training and exercises, and plan maintenance (e.g., review and revision). The house of worship has a comprehensive security and emergency operations plan(s) that addresses all of the areas listed previously. However, leadership has not officially approved the plan(s), and the house of worship has not coordinated the plan(s) with first responders (e.g., law enforcement, fire response, and emergency medical services personnel), emergency management officials, and other community partners. If the security and emergency operations plans are combined, facility personnel have explored the option of separating the combined plan into two separate plans. The house of worship has a comprehensive security and emergency operations plan(s) that addresses all of the areas listed previously. If the security and emergency operations plans are combined, facility personnel are exploring the option of or are in the process of separating the combined plan into two separate plans. Leadership has approved the plan(s) and has coordinated the plan(s) with first responders, emergency management officials, and other community partners.

Establish a collaborative planning team with representatives from the house of worship, as well as first responders and others who may have roles and responsibilities in security and emergency management before, during, and after an incident at the facility. Define roles and responsibilities, and determine a regular schedule of meetings for the planning process. Before developing the plan, identify, assess, and prioritize potential threats and hazards; and determine goals and objectives. Write, review, and approve the plan.

Review and expand the existing plan(s). Format the plan in a way that makes it easy for users to find the information they need and that is compatible with relevant local and state plans. Check the plan for compliance with applicable laws and regulations.

Update the plan(s) to address all of the areas listed above. If the security and emergency operations plans are combined, explore the option of separating security topics from emergency operations topics into two separate plans.

Present the plan(s) to the appropriate leadership and obtain official approval of the plan(s). Coordinate the plan(s) with first responders, emergency management officials, and other community partners. Continue efforts to develop separate plans for security and for emergency operations.

Regularly train, exercise, evaluate, review, and update the plan(s). Effective plans should be reviewed and updated annually based on exercise results, research, evolving threats, and lessons learned from real-world incidents.

 Background | Reference | More Information
3. Are employees and volunteers trained on the security and emergency operations plan(s)?

Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a written security and emergency operations plan(s).
The house of worship does not train employees and volunteers on the security and emergency operations plan(s). The house of worship provides some information or training to some employees and volunteers, but not to everyone involved with implementing the plan(s). The house of worship may provide training less often than annually. The house of worship provides at least annual training to everyone involved with implementing the plan(s) but no recurring training throughout a calendar year. Although all parties have completed training on the plan, they may not have easy access to references that will prompt them to execute their responsibilities effectively when an incident occurs (e.g., quick reference guides, badge-sized reference cards). The house of worship provides annual training to everyone involved with implementing the plan(s), as well as some type of refresher training. Refresher training may be sporadic, for example, only after a threat or incident. The house of worship provides concise and user-friendly reference guides on the plan(s), policies, and procedures. The house of worship provides comprehensive training to everyone involved with implementing the plan(s) annually, as well as regular refresher training throughout the year (e.g., quarterly). The house of worship provides concise and user-friendly reference guides on the plan(s), policies, and procedures.

Provide training to everyone involved in the plan(s) so they understand their roles and responsibilities before, during, and after an incident.

At least once a year, hold a meeting to educate all involved parties on the plan. Show involved parties where evacuation sites, reunification areas, media areas, and triage areas will be located. Provide training on the skills necessary for individuals to fulfill their roles. Persons will be assigned specific roles in the plan that will require special skills, such as first aid and the provision of personal assistance services for children, the elderly, individuals with disabilities, and others with access and functional needs.

Provide follow-up training to everyone involved in the plan(s) annually and throughout a calendar year. Provide appropriate and relevant literature on the plan(s), policies, and procedures (e.g., quick reference guides, badge-sized reference cards).

Provide regular refresher training throughout the year (e.g., once a quarter) to everyone involved in the plan(s).

Regularly assess the training program for the security and emergency plan(s) to identify and remedy any gaps or shortfalls.

 Background | Reference | More Information
4. Are congregants trained on elements of the security and emergency operations plan(s)?

Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a written security and emergency operations plan(s).
The house of worship does not train congregants on elements of the plan(s) (e.g., evacuation routes, responding to an active-shooter incident). The house of worship provides some training to congregants at least once a year. Training may be limited to the appropriate emergency response actions for primary locations only (e.g., main gathering area, fellowship hall, classrooms). The house of worship provides comprehensive training to congregants annually and throughout the year. Congregants are trained on appropriate emergency response actions regardless of their location in the house of worship (e.g., including hallways, bathrooms).

Provide at least annual training on the security and emergency operations plan(s) for all congregants.

Evaluate the need to provide more frequent training to congregants. Evaluate the completeness of training and provide additional information as necessary. Train congregants on appropriate emergency response actions regardless of their location in the house of worship. Ensure congregants are trained to cooperate and not to interfere with first responders.

Regularly assess the training program to identify and remedy any gaps or shortfalls. Document the delivery of training.

 Background | Reference | More Information
5. Has the house of worship coordinated the security and emergency operations plan(s) with first responders?

Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a written security and emergency operations plan(s).
The house of worship has not coordinated with first responders regarding emergency preparedness. The house of worship has provided the security and emergency operations plan(s) to first responders but has not solicited or implemented their input on the plan. The house of worship has not shared critical information about the building or facilities (e.g., floor plans, location of critical assets or areas, and notification and contact lists). Emergency responders have not toured the house of worship in order to familiarize themselves with the layout of the building and grounds. The house of worship has coordinated the security and emergency operations plan(s) with first responders and has shared critical information about the building and facilities. Although emergency responders have toured the facility, the house of worship has not initiated activities to bring them onsite regularly. The house of worship has coordinated the security and emergency operations plan(s) with first responders and has provided critical information about the building and facilities. The house of worship has initiated activities to regularly bring emergency responders onsite (e.g., with training activities or traffic control). The house of worship has not created crisis response kits for first responders to use in an emergency. The house of worship has coordinated the security and emergency operations plan(s) with first responders and has shared critical information about the building and facilities. Emergency responders come onsite regularly (e.g., for training activities or traffic control). The house of worship has created crisis response kits for first responders to use in an emergency. Local law enforcement may not have conducted a security assessment of the facility.

Provide the security and emergency operations plan(s) to local law enforcement and other first responders as necessary.

Review the security and emergency operations plan(s) with first responders, and make changes as necessary. Share critical building and facilities information with first responders. Invite law enforcement, fire response, and emergency medical services personnel who have a role in the plan to tour the house of worship.

Offer the facility as a training and exercise location for law enforcement. Ask for assistance with traffic control if necessary. Consider hiring off-duty officers as part of the security program. Notify law enforcement of special events.

Create a crisis response kit that contains the information and equipment needed for effective management of a major critical incident. The kit may include the following information: (1) camera locations; (2) up-to-date floor plans; (3) list of key personnel and phone numbers (senior staff, facilities, security, etc.); (4) master key(s); (5) building/security force radio (if applicable); and (6) evacuation routes and assembly area locations. Due to the sensitive nature of the contents of the kit, take measures to safeguard it appropriately. Designate more than one individual to meet and assist first responders and provide them with the crisis response kit in the event of an incident.

Continue coordination with first responders. Coordinate with law enforcement to conduct security surveys, risk assessments, and threat assessments of the facility and neighboring areas. Review the contents of the crisis response kit quarterly to ensure it remains up to date. Coordinate with first responders regarding the contents of the kit. Test the radio(s) on a monthly basis, and keep batteries charged. Use the crisis kit during a drill.

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6. Does the facility exercise the security and emergency operations plan(s)?

Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a written security and emergency operations plan(s).
The house of worship does not exercise the plan(s) on an annual basis. The house of worship exercises the plan(s) at least once annually. Exercises are tabletop or drills and involve relevant facility personnel. They do not include community partners (e.g., first responders, local emergency management staff). The house of worship exercises the plan(s) at least once annually. Exercises are tabletop or drills and include community partners (e.g., first responders, local emergency management staff). The facility does not develop an after-action report for each exercise. The house of worship exercises the plan(s) at least once annually. Exercises are functional and include community partners (e.g., first responders, local emergency management staff). The facility develops an after-action report for each exercise and uses it to improve plans and procedures. The house of worship exercises the plan(s) at least once annually. Exercises are simultaneous functional exercises and include community partners (e.g., first responders, local emergency management staff). The facility develops an after-action report for each exercise and uses it to improve plans and procedures.

Test the plan at least once annually through either a tabletop exercise or a drill. Tabletop exercises are small group discussions that walk through a scenario and the courses of action a facility will need to take before, during, and after an incident. During drills, personnel use the actual facility grounds and buildings to practice responding to a scenario.

Invite community partners to participate in exercises that test the plan(s).

Document the results of all exercises, areas for improvement, and lessons learned in after-action reports. Conduct a functional exercise where events are projected through a scenario with updates that drive activity. A functional exercise is conducted in a realistic, real-time environment; however, movement of personnel and equipment is usually simulated. One aspect of a functional exercise is that participants use their real-world communication. Sometimes for that reason these are referred to as command post exercisers.

Conduct simultaneous functional exercises to validate and evaluate multiple capabilities and functions.

After conducting multiple simultaneous functional exercises, explore the option of holding a full-scale exercise as a capstone that involves multiple agencies, organizations, jurisdictions, and even congregants. Full-scale exercises are the most complex and resource-intensive type of exercise. They often include many players operating under a cooperative system such as the Incident Command System.

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7. Does the facility have lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures? The facility does not have lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures. The facility has some lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures, but procedures may lack sufficient detail. Information concerning lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures and locations has not been communicated to congregants. The facility has comprehensive lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures. Lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures and locations have been communicated to congregants, but key information is not posted throughout the building. The facility has comprehensive lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures. Lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures and locations have been communicated to congregants, and key information is posted throughout the building. However, the facility does not have a regular cycle for reviewing and updating the lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures. The facility has not evaluated the need for any “safe rooms” for protection against extreme threats or hazards (e.g., tornado, hurricane, or active shooter). “Safe rooms” are designated spaces where people can retreat to in the event of an immediate threat of danger. The facility has comprehensive lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures. Lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures and locations have been communicated to congregants, and key information is posted throughout the building. The facility regularly reviews the lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures and implements updates as needed. The facility has “safe rooms” to provide immediate life-safety protection against extreme threats or hazards, or has evaluated the need for these spaces.

Develop lockdown procedures to ensure all persons are secured quickly in rooms away from immediate danger during incidents that pose an immediate threat of violence in the house of worship. Develop lockout procedures to ensure all persons on the premises return to and are secured within the building when conditions outside the house of worship are unsafe. Develop shelter-in-place procedures for situations when persons are required to remain in the facility, perhaps for an extended period, because it is safer inside the building or a room than outside.

Review and expand existing lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures. Ensure information concerning lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures and locations is communicated to congregants, including individuals with disabilities or others with access and functional needs.

Post key information (e.g., lockout procedures, lockdown and shelter-in-place locations) throughout the facility to provide congregants with easy access to this information.

Regularly assess the facility’s lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures, and update them as needed. Use after-action reports for each exercise of the security and emergency operations plan(s) to improve these procedures. Evaluate the need for and integration of “safe rooms” in order to provide immediate life-safety protection against extreme threats or hazards. A designated safe room may be equipped with a duress button, telephone, and reinforced doors.

Research, evaluate, and implement enhancements to lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures based on collaborative relationships and new or updated resources.

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8. Does the house of worship have mass notification capabilities? The house of worship does not have a way to alert the entire facility of imminent danger. The house of worship does not monitor external sources for important emergency information (e.g., weather alerts, public safety announcements from local first responders, and national public warnings from the Emergency Alert System). The house of worship monitors external sources for important emergency information and has a public address system for onsite emergency communications but lacks ways to communicate warnings to individuals who need other accommodations such as visual signals. The house of worship does not periodically test the system. The house of worship monitors external sources for important emergency information and has both audio and visual mass notification systems for onsite emergency communications. They are unique and separate from communications channels used for routine announcements. The house of worship periodically tests the system.

With consideration of the size of the facility and the congregation, install a public address system to provide a means of mass communication and to provide warning and alert information, along with actions to take before and after an incident. Monitor external sources for important emergency information (e.g., weather alerts, public safety announcements from local first responders, and national public warnings from the Emergency Alert System).

Explore options to communicate warnings more effectively beyond only audible alerts, such as strobe lights. Test the emergency mass communication system periodically to ensure its functionality and so employees, volunteers, and congregants are familiar with its use.

Verify that employees, volunteers, and congregants know how to respond appropriately to alerts onsite. Ensure that notification protocols are readily available and understood by those who may be responsible for sending out or broadcasting an announcement.

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9. Does the house of worship have crisis communications plans and procedures? The house of worship does not have any crisis communications plans or procedures. The house of worship has crisis communications plans and procedures that address emergency contacts, chain of command, and distribution of mass notifications, but they may lack some level of detail. A spokesperson for the congregation may not have been designated or may have been designated without relevant training and/or resources. The house of worship has comprehensive crisis communications plans and procedures that address emergency contacts, chain of command, distribution of mass notifications, coordination with local government officials (e.g., public information officers), and support for affected congregants who prefer not to engage with the media. A spokesperson for the congregation has been designated and adequately trained.

Develop a plan for crisis communications. Include a list of emergency contacts such as law enforcement, religious leaders, relevant volunteers, security committee members, and others. Establish emergency communication protocols to clearly designate the chain of command as to who should be contacted in the event of an emergency or major incident. Coordinate communication procedures that include mass notification texts, social media posts, and emails.

Evaluate crisis communications plans and procedures for completeness. Include procedures for coordinating with local government, crisis communications, and external affairs officials (e.g., public information officers). Ensure plans address how affected congregants will be supported if they prefer not to engage with the media. This may include strategies for keeping the media separate from congregants while the emergency is ongoing and supporting congregants who may experience unwanted media attention at their homes. Designate a spokesperson for the congregation to gather the facts and issue statements. Provide the spokesperson with relevant training and/or resources. Stipulate that other congregants refrain from speaking to the media.

Regularly review crisis communications plans and procedures to identify and remedy any gaps or shortfalls. Use after-action reports from operations plan(s) exercises to improve these plans and procedures.

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10. Does the house of worship receive threat information, security-related bulletins, advisories, or alerts from an external source? The house of worship does not receive any threat information, security-related bulletins, advisories, or alerts from an external source. The house of worship monitors open-source intelligence information related to threats against houses of worship, but has not joined any trusted communities of peers and partners exchanging issues, ideas, intelligence, and other information across private networks. The house of worship monitors open-source intelligence information related to threats against houses of worship and is part of at least one vetted, private information-sharing network such as the Faith-Based Information Sharing & Analysis Organization (FB-ISAO). In addition, the house of worship has contacted the local police department regarding access to crime report information, and receives such information if it is available. However, the house of worship does not network locally to gain intelligence information.

Monitor open-source intelligence information related to threats against houses of worship for criminal, cybercrime, and terrorist activities.

Request access to a vetted, private information-sharing network such as FB-ISAO. Contact the local police department regarding access to crime report information.

Establish a networking group with other religious leaders in the community to share best practices and intelligence information regarding safety and security. Reach out to the local Protective Security Advisor for assistance with coordinating this networking group.

 Reference | More Information
11. Does the house of worship participate in any external security or emergency preparedness working groups? The house of worship does not participate in any external security or emergency preparedness working groups. Facility personnel are connected with a federal, state, local, or private sector security or emergency preparedness working group. They may not regularly attend meetings, but they receive information. Facility personnel are connected with a security or emergency preparedness working group. They regularly attend meetings and receive information. Facility personnel are connected with a security or emergency preparedness working group. They regularly attend meetings and receive information. They may participate in special events or activities that the working group sponsors. They may have leadership positions in the group. Facility personnel are connected with two or more security and/or emergency preparedness working groups. They regularly attend meetings and receive information. They may participate in special events or activities that a working group sponsors. They may have leadership positions in a group.

Reach out to other religious leaders in the community, local law enforcement, and/or federal, state, or local homeland security or emergency management officials to identify opportunities to participate in security or emergency preparedness working groups.

Prioritize attendance at security or emergency preparedness working group meetings.

Seek out more ways for facility personnel to benefit from participating in the security or emergency preparedness working group, for example, by getting involving in special events or activities or by taking leadership positions in the group.

Join other security or emergency preparedness working groups to increase engagement and gain additional resources in these areas.

Assess the need to engage with additional security or emergency preparedness working groups.

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12. Does the house of worship conduct background checks on employees and volunteers? The house of worship does not conduct any background checks on employees or volunteers. The house of worship procures background checks on select individuals only. The house of worship procures background checks on all employees and volunteers. However, the type of background checks conducted may provide minimal information, creating a false sense of security. The house of worship procures thorough background checks on all employees and volunteers. Unique detailed checks are conducted according to an individual’s position (e.g., credit checks for anyone handling money). However, background checks are conducted only initially (e.g., upon hire or when volunteer services began) and not on a recurring basis. The house of worship procures thorough background checks on all employees and volunteers. Background checks are conducted initially and on a recurring basis.

After seeking legal counsel, procure background checks for employees and volunteers, especially for individuals working with children. Establish a standard waiting period when a new person arrives before allowing them to serve in various capacities, such as childcare. Keep personnel files on all staff and volunteers.

Procure background checks on all employees and volunteers.

Procure thorough background checks that include criminal history and prior employment. Require individuals who handle money to consent to a credit and background check. Run a license check on individuals who drive vehicles.

Procure recurring background checks for all employees and volunteers on a regular basis.

Audit personnel files regularly to verify background checks have been completed and recurring checks are completed as scheduled.

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13. Does the facility provide security information to employees, volunteers, and congregants? The house of worship does not provide security information to employees, volunteers, and congregants. The house of worship provides information about specific security incidents to employees and volunteers. The facility does not provide security awareness information. The house of worship provides information about specific security incidents as well as security awareness information to employees and volunteers. However, security awareness information is limited in scope and availability (e.g., provided occasionally). The house of worship provides information about specific security incidents as well as security awareness information to employees and volunteers on a recurring basis. Security awareness information is detailed and comprehensive, but distribution is limited (e.g., emails only). The house of worship also encourages congregants to take personal responsibility for strengthening the community’s security culture, for example, with messages in printed materials already regularly distributed. The house of worship provides information about specific security incidents as well as security awareness information to employees and volunteers on a recurring basis. Congregants also receive security awareness information. Security awareness information is detailed, comprehensive, and communicated through a variety of formats (e.g., emails, posters, announcements, regular meetings).

Provide information about specific security incidents to employees and volunteers.

Provide security awareness information in addition to information about specific security incidents.

Provide more detailed and comprehensive security awareness information. Disseminate information regularly.

Disseminate security information through a variety of formats (e.g., emails, posters, announcements, regular meetings). Explore ways to expand and increase messaging to congregants regarding steps they can individually take to strengthen the facility’s security culture.

Continue to provide security information to employees, volunteers, and congregants. Solicit feedback regarding the usefulness of the type of information provided.

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14. Does the facility have procedures for bomb threats and suspicious items? The facility does not have procedures for bomb threats or suspicious items. The facility has some written documentation that addresses bomb threats and suspicious items, but detailed, comprehensive procedures do not exist. Mail and shipping procedures ensure all mail and packages are delivered to a single location. External entities cannot deliver mail or packages directly to an individual. The facility has bomb threat and suspicious item procedures, but some information may be lacking. The facility may not communicate these procedures to employees and volunteers. Congregants are aware that if they encounter a suspicious item, they should leave it alone and notify someone in authority. The facility has a detailed bomb threat plan and comprehensive suspicious item procedures that define characteristics and outline appropriate response actions. The facility communicates these procedures to employees and volunteers but does not provide them any training. Congregants are aware that if they encounter a suspicious item, they should leave it alone and notify someone in authority. Detailed guidelines provide the appropriate actions for responding to a bomb threat, and comprehensive procedures define common characteristics of suspicious items and outline appropriate response actions. The facility communicates these plans and procedures to employees and volunteers, and it provides them related training as appropriate. Congregants are aware that if they encounter a suspicious item, they should leave it alone and notify someone in authority.

Develop two checklists, one to help to help employees and volunteers to respond to a bomb threat and another to help personnel identify suspicious items left around or within the house or worship, or delivered to the facility. Establish procedures for regular delivery services and employees to ensure all mail and packages are delivered to a single location. Ensure external entities cannot deliver mail or packages directly to an individual.

Develop detailed guidelines for responding to a bomb threat and comprehensive procedures for suspicious items that define their common characteristics and outline appropriate response actions. Share these plans and procedures with employees and volunteers. Ensure congregants are aware that if they encounter a suspicious item, they should leave it alone and notify someone in authority.

Review the existing bomb threat and suspicious item procedures, and incorporate additional information as needed. Share the updated procedures with employees and volunteers.

Provide regular training on bomb threat and suspicious item procedures as appropriate.

Test bomb threat and suspicious item procedures. Review bomb threat and suspicious package procedures to identify and remedy any gaps or shortfalls. Based on the results of a risk assessment and if budgets allow, explore options for centralizing mail and package handling and processing operations at a location separate from the house of worship.

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15. Does the house of worship have cash management controls? The house of worship does not have established cash management controls. Any cash-handling policies and procedures are communicated verbally and may be performed on an ad hoc basis. If cash is stored onsite, it is not adequately secured in a safe. A lockable cash drawer may be in use. Cash storage is adequately secured with a safe, or money is deposited immediately after collection. The house of worship has established cash-handling policies and procedures and financial safety protocols. However, dual custody or dual controls are not required for all cash-handling procures. Financial records may lack detail or be incomplete. Cash storage is adequately secured or money is deposited immediately. The house of worship has established cash-handling policies and procedures and financial safety protocols. A two-party system is in place to ensure that no one person has sole access to contributions and other collections. Financial records are detailed and accurate. However, not all individuals with cash access have undergone a background check that includes a credit check. Cash storage is highly secured or money is deposited immediately. The house of worship has established cash-handling policies and procedures and financial safety protocols. Financial records are detailed and accurate. Individuals with cash access have undergone a thorough background check that includes a credit check. Cash storage is highly secured or money is deposited immediately. The house of worship has established cash-handling policies and procedures and financial safety protocols. Financial records are detailed and accurate. Individuals with cash access have undergone a thorough background check that includes a credit check, and they have signed a confidentiality agreement agreeing not to remove and/or release any financial data in any way.

Establish written policies and procedures that identify administrative controls and requirements to provide resource and expenditure safety, security, and accountability. Provide secure storage of contributions and other collections.

Keep detailed and accurate financial records. Implement requirements for multiple persons to handle money. Basic internal controls dictate that (1) at least two people (preferably unrelated) should be present when counting money and another individual may observe the process; (2) at least two people (preferably unrelated) should be required to open a safe or vault; and (3) if the safe or vault is opened using a combination, the combination should be split into segments and given to two or more people.

Screen individuals with access to contributions and other collections with a thorough background check that includes a credit check.

Require individuals with cash access to sign a confidentiality agreement stating that they will not copy, photograph, remove and/or release any financial data.

Conduct regular and reconciliations, internal reviews, and audits. Submit financial reconciliations to leaders for review regularly (e.g., monthly). Periodically conduct an unscheduled count or reconciliation of petty cash.

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Security Force

A security force is a group of volunteers, employees, or contractors whose sole responsibilities are to provide security at the house of worship. A security force, which may be referred to a security team, does not include general personnel who are trained in security awareness (i.e., observe and report) in addition to their regular duties. Security forces at houses of worship can vary significantly in terms of size and responsibilities. Smaller facilities may have one or two people with a few security responsibilities, medium-sized facilities may have a larger team with several types of security capabilities, and larger facilities may have a professionalized security force consisting of combinations of in-house security employees and contract personnel. The need for a security force should be determined based on an assessment of threats facing the facility. The number and nature of assets and people needing protection and available staffing, budget, and expertise influence the size and scope of a security force. The key factor for a security force is to have a team of people with some ability to provide access control and respond to security- and safety-related incidents at the facility. Be aware that in some state and local areas, paid security force members must be licensed by the state and/or local county/municipality in order to carry out security functions. Check with state and local agencies for licensing and insurance requirements.

Due to some historical and recent events, the issue of providing lethal and less-than-lethal weapons has been raised. Although no question in this self-assessment deals directly with that topic, some facilities may choose to explore that option. Some house of worship leaders may wish to consider arming their security force as part of their broader security strategy. The range of options for maintaining an armed force is former military/law enforcement to off-duty law enforcement officers all the way to a professionalized and contracted security force. Generally, having members with concealed carry weapons that have not coordinated a response is not considered a security force. Arming a security force may not be appropriate for all houses of worship. The decision should be based on a thorough risk analysis process that includes identification of potential threats, understanding of liability, and knowledge of local regulations, as well as training and insurance costs. It is important to coordinate a planned armed response with law enforcement and first responders.


For more information see:
  • Secure Community Network, Firearms and the Faithful: Approaches to Armed Security in Jewish Communities, January 2020, accessed January 20, 2020, https://cdn.fedweb.org/fed-91/2/FirearmsandtheFaithful%255B2%255D%25281%2529.pdf.
  • Norman, Thomas L., Risk Analysis and Security Countermeasure Selection, Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 2010.
  • ASIS International, Protection of Assets: Security Officer Operations, Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2011.
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    16. Does the facility have a security force or security team to carry out daily security operations? The facility does not have a security team or force of any kind. The facility does not have a defined security force, but some paid or volunteer members may have an additional duty related to security. A security team or volunteer security force exists but has minimal presence and conducts periodic patrols. A local police officer may be present or conduct an onsite visit once during main gathering times to assist in security response, entry and traffic control, and administering security policy. The facility employs or contracts a security force or assigns volunteers for the specific purpose of security during gatherings and events. The security force patrols the facility often and staffs static posts at critical assets and areas. A local police officer is on the campus during main gathering times to assist in security response. The facility has an onsite security force (at the house of worship) at all times. The security force is employed or contracted for the specific purpose of securing the house of worship. This includes the presence of one or more law enforcement officers during main gatherings.

    Assign and provide training to a few paid or volunteer members to perform basic security tasks that include ensuring doors and windows are locked, coordinating active-shooter response procedures, and addressing suspicious activity.

    Explore the feasibility of establishing or contracting a security force or forming and training a volunteer force at the facility to actively protect the congregation and the property, and to rapidly respond to security incidents and/or emergencies. Depending on state and local regulations, security force personnel may be subject to registration, licensing, certification, specific training, and other requirements.

    Establish agreements or contracts to employ a security force with the specific purpose of facility security. Contact local law enforcement and coordinate onsite visits with an on-duty officer during regular gathering times.

    Establish agreements or contracts to employ a security force with the specific purpose of being an onsite security force at all major gathering times. The security force is employed or contracted for the specific purpose of facility security. This may include an officer from the local police force that provides onsite presence during all regular gathering times.

    Routinely review the role of the security force and establish metrics for continuous improvement and modification to the role. Ensure the security force is actively engaged with the house of worship leadership and assists with or conducts ongoing training and development of employees and volunteers as related to security.

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    17. What security training does the facility provide to the security force, employees, and/or volunteers / members who fulfil security roles?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have any personnel responsible for fulfilling any security responsibilities
    The house of worship has provided no training, no posters, and no security awareness training for personnel within past 12 months. The house of worship has some posters or security awareness training for personnel at initial employment. The training may include refresher training on emergency response activities at irregular intervals, but no other follow-up takes place throughout the year. Security awareness training, including active-shooter training for paid or volunteer members occurs at initial employment and one other time throughout the year. If applicable, the security force receives training as stated in a contract or agreement. Posters are available in administrative office areas. The house of worship does not provide volunteers and employees with training on how to help in a bleeding emergency before first responders arrive. The house of worship provides security awareness training including active-shooter training and emergency response exercise at initial employment. Routine training throughout the year is provided for personnel. Posters are available in administrative office areas. Volunteers and employees have been trained on bleeding control and have access to products to help stop traumatic hemorrhaging. Personnel receive extensive, recurring training including active-shooter training. If applicable, security force personnel provide routine monthly training to faculty and staff. Posters are available in administrative office areas. All employees and volunteers have been trained on bleeding control. The house of worship has kits with products intended to stop traumatic hemorrhaging.

    Use the DHS Active Shooter Preparedness website to establish initial training. At a minimum, provide security awareness training at initial employment for all paid and volunteer members involved in security roles. Provide refresher yearly refresher training related to active shooter and other emergency response activities.

    Use the DHS Active Shooter Preparedness website as needed to enhance training. In addition to initial employment and once per year, conduct follow-up training at least one other time throughout the year. Develop or contract a formal training program for those responsible for security such as emergency response Incident Command System/National Incident Management System. Provide continuation and in-service training for employees and volunteers to maintain and enhance job proficiency. Document training and retain training records.

    Use the DHS Active Shooter Preparedness website as needed to enhance training. Employ security professionals certified or licensed through a federal or state program. Ensure the training requirements they fulfilled to become certified or licensed will equip them to fulfill the facility’s security requirements. Establish a security topic as part of regular meetings. Provide all employees and volunteers with awareness materials and training throughout the year. Train employees and volunteer to provide immediate bleeding control in an emergency. Provide bleeding control supplies.

    Use the DHS Active Shooter Preparedness website as needed to enhance training. Use security force, or law enforcement (local, state, or federal) to conduct additional training and exercises throughout the year. Provide all paid and volunteer members awareness materials and update materials throughout the year.

    Use the DHS Active Shooter Preparedness website (or equivalent) to enhance training. Enhance training with realistic drills and exercises. If possible, involve congregants in active-shooter drills or exercises to create a realistic simulation. Document lessons learned and implement updated actions.

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    18. Does the security force/team conduct security-related inspections or screening of the facility before people gather?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a security force/team.
    No areas of the house of worship are patrolled or inspected. Those who clean and prepare the house of worship report unusual items such as weapons. Emergency actions are improvised as reports are received. Volunteers or employees occasionally inspects the house of worship for unlocked doors, open windows, and/or suspicious packages, but they do not conduct a routine search or inspection, and they have not received training. A trained security force/team or individual occasionally inspects the house of worship according to an established security checklist. A trained security force/team, or individual routinely (e.g., daily) inspects most sensitive areas of the house of worship including sweeps of offices, main gathering areas, and concealed areas such as confessionals and under stairs. A trained security force or individual patrols and inspects all sensitive areas of facility at least daily; they may patrol some areas more often.

    Establish procedures for reporting unusual items and suspicious activity to include notification to law enforcement. Assign a security force, staff, or faculty member to conduct security-related inspections of the facility.

    Establish a security checklist that incorporates roles and responsibilities and what areas to evaluate. Common areas of interest include under stages in main gathering areas, seating areas, offices, rooms or areas with tile ceilings, and similar areas that may have hazardous materials or places to easily conceal weapons or other contraband. Be alert for graffiti or suspicious packages. Notify law enforcement of any activity. Provide training for personnel conducting inspections.

    Conduct daily inspection of sensitive areas especially before people gather. Ensure doors are not propped open, and windows, loading areas, and exterior doors are secured. Report suspicious activity, weapons, and drugs to the security force and law enforcement as needed.

    Continue daily inspections. Ensure a security force presence in a random pattern throughout the facility, focusing on sensitive areas.

    Provide training on identifying suspicious activity and search techniques. Augment existing security plans by including written inspection procedures. Provide trainings on that section of the plan, and conduct periodic drills and exercises to validate the plan.

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    19. Does the security force/team have communications, equipment, or panic alarms?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a security force/team.
    The house of worship has no panic alarms or similar equipment and can only call 9-1-1 during an event. The house of worship has panic alarms in the administrative office but no other similar equipment. The security force/team has some gaps in equipment (e.g., radio, campus transportation), but generally has the minimum essential to perform its mission. Panic buttons are available to administrative staff and in isolated or hard-to-reach areas of the facility. The security force/team has some gaps in equipment (e.g., radio, campus transportation), but generally has the minimum essential to perform its mission. Panic buttons are assigned to house of worship leaders and some employees. They are also located in isolated or hard-to-reach areas of the facility. The security force/team has no significant gaps in equipment (e.g., radio, and campus transportation). Panic buttons, including portable units, are located throughout the house of worship. The facility conducts regular drills for all panic alarms.

    Investigate the cost and use of panic alarms for key personnel or critical locations. Key personnel may include greeters and other personnel who may be the first to determine that an attack is occurring. Ensure the security team/force has basic radio equipment for communications.

    Expand the use of panic alarms to include employees and volunteers and isolated or sensitive locations at the house of worship. This may include childcare areas, administrative offices, and common areas.

    Ensure the security force/team has all equipment required to perform the functions of the job. This may include radios, restraints, non-lethal weapons, and possibly transportation. Ensure panic buttons or duress alarms are assigned to key personnel. Place panic buttons or duress alarms in isolated or hard-to-reach areas of the facility, such as childcare areas, administrative offices, and common areas.

    Ensure the security force/team has all equipment required to perform necessary job functions. This equipment may include radios, restraints, non-lethal weapons, and possibly transportation. Ensure panic buttons or duress alarms are located throughout the facility, and provide portable alarms. Ensure remote or isolated areas of the house of worship, such as childcare areas, administrative offices, and common areas, also have alarms.

    Establish and implement a policy to test, replace, and repair the equipment as needed.

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    20. Does the facility assign personnel to provide a security presence during times of critical vulnerability (i.e., during congregant arrival/departure, special events)? No personnel actively monitor for threats during times of critical vulnerability. Employees or volunteers may be present, but no one is specifically assigned to monitor for threats. Personnel are assigned to monitor for threats during times of critical vulnerability. However, they have received little to no training for this position and have no special equipment. Well-trained, well-equipped personnel monitor for threats during times of critical vulnerability. This includes sanctuary and building entrances, as well as parking areas

    Assign personnel to monitor for threat activities during periods when congregants are arriving and departing.

    Provide training to monitoring personnel. Relevant topics may include intruder response, reverse evacuation, and how to assist in the arrival of public safety vehicles. Provide personnel with a radio to communicate with building/office staff or the security force/team, and ensure they have access to a phone for calling 9-1-1. Areas to be monitored should include sanctuary and building entrances, as well as parking areas.

    Encourage continuity of monitoring personnel to facilitate positive rapport with congregants. In addition to serving a security purpose, monitors can help foster a sense of community and provide a welcoming presence while also contributing to security awareness.

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    21. Does the security force have designated posts/patrols and written post orders or basic instructions for security tasks?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a security force/team.
    The security force has no dedicated posts/patrols and no post orders or basic instructions for security tasks. The security force has some dedicated posts and some basic or spoken instructions for the security duties at each post/patrol. The security force has dedicated and assigned security posts and written orders/instructions for the security duties at each post/patrol.

    Designate specific areas or posts and patrol areas for the security force/team. Write basic procedures and responsibilities of each area/post/patrol. Topics for these post orders should include description of post/area/patrol, contact information, procedures for access control, equipment control, emergency procedures, and other duties and procedures as necessary.

    If not already written, write basic procedures and responsibilities of each area/post/patrol. Topics for these post orders should include description of post/area/patrol, contact information, procedures for access control, equipment control, emergency procedures, and other duties and procedures as necessary. Incorporate the post orders into the security plan that communicates not only specific procedures, but also a code of ethics, standards of conduct and security policies for the organization.

    Continue to revise and adjust post locations, definitions and procedures as necessary. Ensure key stakeholders are aware of the security procedures, post orders and responsibilities of security force/team.

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    22. Are ushers, greeters, and volunteers trained in security awareness and threat detection? No personnel are trained in any security awareness topics. No security meetings take place to inform personnel of recent security and/or threat information. No personnel are trained in general security awareness topics, but some security meetings take place to inform personnel of recent security and/or threat information. Ushers, greeters, and volunteers have received training in security awareness and threat detection, and regular or periodic meetings take place to inform personnel of recent security and/or threat information.

    Provide some basic training in security awareness such as FEMA IS-906: Workplace Security Awareness training and the “Protect Your Every Day” public service announcement.

    Provide some basic training in security awareness such as FEMA IS-906: Workplace Security Awareness training and the “Protect Your Every Day” public service announcement. Create and distribute a list of suspicious behavior, and ensure ushers, greeters, and volunteers know how to contact leadership or the security force to report suspicious behavior.

    Create on ongoing training program for ushers, greeters, and volunteers to continue to communicate indicators of suspicious behavior, ongoing security concerns and other security incidents relevant to the community. Conduct some basic exercises to test the process.

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    23. Are mechanisms in place for employees, volunteers, and congregants to report behaviors that raise safety concerns to the security force and/or the house of worship leadership? No mechanisms are in place to report security concerns to the security force/team or leadership personnel. Personnel can informally report security concerns to administrative staff or other personnel, but no formal mechanism (e.g., special radio, phone number or email address) exists to report security concerns. A dedicated radio, phone number, email or other mechanism is available for employees, volunteers, and congregants to report security concerns. This method for reporting security concerns is distributed to all personnel.

    Designate someone to respond to security concerns. This may be someone assigned security duties, a security manager, or the security force. Ensure all employees, volunteers, and congregants know who is designated to receive security concerns and how to contact that person or department. This may be part of an informal or formal process.

    Provide a formal means of reporting non-immediate and immediate security concerns. For immediate concerns, the process may include distributing a radio to contact the security team or cell phone number of someone who can respond. Provide de-escalation training for those responders. For non-immediate security concerns, the facility may distribute and post a designated security phone number or email account that is checked regularly. Develop a program for handling at-risk individuals.

    Continue to update and refine the process for reporting security concerns. If designated security responders change, ensure all personnel are aware of the change and update all written procedures to reflect the change. Consider expanding program for dealing with at-risk individuals to other volunteers or employees.

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    Perimeter Security / Delineation

    Fences are barriers enclosing or bordering a facility that are used to prevent entry, contain people to particular areas, or mark a boundary. Fence construction may include different materials (e.g., chain link, wood, wrought iron, plastic), heights, anchoring, and other features (e.g., barbed wire along the top, privacy screening, outriggers). Gates are openings in the perimeter that allow people or vehicles to pass through at controlled points of entry. Gates can apply to vehicles and pedestrians and may include moveable bollards, roller or slide gates, swing gates, or turnstiles, among other construction options. Together, fences and gates are part of the broader layers of defense that facilities can put in place to protect against a spectrum of security issues including but not limited to active shooters. Depending on the facility and its location, fences and gates may not be appropriate for all houses of worship or may apply only to some features such as parking areas, sports fields, children play areas, gardens, or other outdoor spaces. Fences and gates can be used in addition to other measures to create layers of security. Measures other than fences and gates include sidewalks, perimeter landscaping, signage, and lighting, which can all be used to define a border and create a psychologic deterrent. These layers of protective measures are deployed in concentric circles around a facility, starting at the outer perimeter and moving inward to areas with the greatest need for protection. In addition, the facility can employ the concept of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED), which focuses on manipulating features of the environment surrounding the facility to create a feeling of safety while also deterring potential crime.

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    24. Does the house of worship have a well-established perimeter using natural materials or fencing/walls? The house of worship is an open campus without perimeter barriers and fencing, or it has fencing, but the fence is weak, old, or in disrepair. Holes in the fencing material, weak areas, or gaps between the fencing may exist The fence does not clearly define the site perimeter. The house of worship does not have a full perimeter fence or wall, but it does have a well-defined perimeter and/or some elements of fencing that identify legal boundaries and may funnel foot and vehicle traffic to specific areas. It may enclose a part of the grounds such as an athletic field or other assets. Fencing/a wall completely encloses the house of worship. No persons can enter any part of the property without going through a gate in the fence/wall or through the main entrance doors.

    If fencing does not exist, determine what role, if any, fencing should have at the facility (e.g., to clearly distinguish the perimeter of the site to protect against trespassing, provide access control by channeling individuals through authorized access points, and/or protect against unauthorized entry by providing increased access delay and more time for assessment). Install fencing that is appropriate for the facility’s objectives. If fencing exists, repair or replace it as needed. If fencing is not a viable solution for the house of worship, employ CPTED principles and/or barriers (e.g., bollards, decorative flower pots, high curbs, shallow ditches) to provide enhanced penetration delay.

    Install additional fencing to enclose the facility to the maximum extent possible and/or employ CPTED principles and/or barriers (e.g., bollards, decorative flower pots, high curbs, shallow ditches) to provide enhanced penetration delay. If fences are installed in places where people gather, ensure proper egress exists from the area in the case of an emergency.

    Explore the feasibility of improving the landscape to supplement the existing facility perimeter fence. Landscaping examples include earthen berms, low-growing shrubs, plants, or trees. Regularly assess and maintain the fence. Explore the option of combining elevation changes and/or aggressive plantings with fencing barriers for additional protection. (Aggressive plantings include cacti, thorny bushes, and plants and trees.) If fences are installed in places where people gather, ensure proper egress exists from the area in the case of an emergency.

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    25. Does the house of worship have natural surveillance from the building to the outer perimeter? The house of worship has little or no natural surveillance from the building to the outer perimeter. Multiple layers of vegetation block the view from the facility to the perimeter. Avenues of approach to the facility are not fully visible. Natural surveillance of most of the perimeter exists, but some significant areas of the perimeter cannot be surveilled from the facility (e.g., parking areas and avenues of ingress and egress from the area). Natural surveillance of all significant areas of the perimeter exists. People approaching the facility can be easily observed from the perimeter to the building entrances.

    Use an inside-outward approach and view the property from the building outward. Identify overgrown vegetation, large objects such as statues and landscaping devices, and other objects that block the ability to identify people approaching the facility. Create a plan to reduce the amount of vegetation and objects that obstruct the view of critical areas and assets such as vehicle approaches, pedestrian avenues of approach, or public spaces. The plan may take a phased approach to reduce obstructions as time and budget permit.

    Use an inside-outward approach and view the property from the building outward. Identify overgrown vegetation, large objects such as statues and landscaping devices and other objects that block the ability to identify people approaching the facility. Create a plan to reduce these obstructions. If some obstructions cannot be reduced or eliminated, consider using camera systems to enhance the ability to surveil those areas or rearrange the campus to support natural surveillance. These activities can include moving/reducing vehicle entrances to the property, moving/removing public access areas, and rerouting pedestrian traffic to avoid those areas and increase safety for congregants entering the property.

    Continue to maintain the property to ensure good natural surveillance of the perimeter and critical areas. If some obstructions still exist, consider using landscaping features to impede movement of a potential intruder in those areas and reduce areas that can be used as hiding spots.

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    26. Are public and private spaces separated? Public and private spaces are mixed throughout the facility. In some cases, congregants and visitors must use hallways or offices dedicated to internal staff in order to reach other public areas such as restrooms or common areas. Most of the private areas are separated from the public and shared spaces. Some areas are mixed use, but some measures are in place to keep congregants and visitors out of private spaces. Public and private areas are completely separated. No areas exist where congregants or visitors have to cross private areas to reach public or common areas, or all administrative or sensitive areas are kept secured and locked during main gathering times.

    Observe and document traffic flows in the facility. Identify areas where congregants must pass through a controlled or restricted zone to reach a public or common space. Congregants who do not have special access to controlled zones should be able to enter the facility and use all public and common spaces without crossing into controlled or restricted zones. If possible, reroute traffic or ensure controlled or restricted zones are locked. Use signage to identify areas where congregants should not go.

    Identify areas where public/controlled zones are mixed. Make plans to enhance the ability to lock controlled and restricted areas (e.g., install locks, move file cabinets or expensive equipment). Use signage to identify areas where congregants should not be. Consider moving or removing doorways where it is difficult or impossible to restrict public access to a controlled or sensitive area. Post security personnel or volunteers in areas where access cannot be completely controlled.

    Continue to observe traffic flow in the facility and ensure all employees, volunteers, and security force personnel are aware of the proper access controls in restricted areas. Enforce policies to keep restricted access areas closed and locked during appropriate times.

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    27. If the facility has a fence or a wall, what is its purpose?

    Fences may not be a practical security solution for some houses of worship. Skip this question if the facility does not have a fence.
    The purpose of the fence/wall is more decorative or to define the perimeter, but it does not deter or delay an intruder. The fence/wall delineates at least part of the perimeter. It provides some level of delay and/or deterrence to intruders. The fence/wall is an obvious deterrent and would delay an intrusion attempt.

    If improvements to the fence are not possible, employ CPTED principles.

    Evaluate all aspects of the fence to identify deficiencies in coverage, and install enhancements to improve its effectiveness and penetration delay such as anchoring the base of the fence.

    Ensure the fencing is in good repair to maintain deterrence value. Explore the option of supplementing with other deterrence measures such as security cameras.

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    28. Does the house of worship have gates? The facility does not have any gates. Gates exist in some areas but not others. Gates may be a single swing arm or moveable chains that an intruder could easily defeat. The house of worship uses gates at all entrances. They are well-maintained.

    Assess the need to install gates to provide appropriate levels of access control and/or penetration delay against individuals.

    Install gates at identified pedestrian/vehicle gaps along the perimeter. Ensure that all gates have at least equivalent properties to the rest of the fence.

    Ensure gates remain in good repair. Explore the option of providing security camera coverage for all gates.

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    29. Is the perimeter illuminated? The perimeter is not illuminated at all, or Illumination appears to be uneven and dissimilar in type causing glare and shadows with inconsistent coverage in most areas, creating dark areas and shadows. Illumination appears to be similar and consistent in type; however, light pattern coverage does not overlap, causing shadows or dark areas. Illumination appears to be similar and uniform in type with overlapping light pattern coverage in most areas.

    Install lighting on the perimeter. Ensure the lighting is even and overlapping to avoid shadows, dark areas and glare. Ensure lighting is compatible with existing or planned closed-circuit video (CCV) systems.

    Develop a plan to improve lighting on the perimeter. Improvements can include increasing the type and number of luminaires and/or upgrading to more modern bulb types such as LED.

    Continue to maintain the lighting system on the perimeter. Develop a plan to identify and replace burned-out bulbs and clean lenses according to manufacturer specifications and timelines.

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    Parking & Barriers

    Parking and barriers are part of the broader layers of defense that facilities can put in place to enhance security. Some of these security measures may be considered more relevant to explosive threats (i.e., where standoff distance is important) or vehicle ramming attacks (i.e., where high-speed avenues of approach are a concern). However, parking controls and barriers can also help deter individuals from initiating armed attacks; detect these attacks earlier at a safe distance; and delay attackers from reaching vulnerable and/or highly populated locations. Monitoring parking areas for suspicious or illegal vehicle placement can include viewing the parking area via security cameras, requiring onsite security personnel to conduct patrols, or maintaining incidental visual contact through windows.

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    30. Are vehicles parked at the house of worship monitored? The facility does not monitor any vehicles driven onsite. The facility conducts random visual screening of vehicles but does not conduct vehicle searches. Parking areas may have some security camera coverage, but gaps in coverage exist. The parking areas have full camera coverage and signage warning that the parking area is monitored. The facility patrols the parking area and visually screens the vehicles for items such as weapons and contraband.

    Establish a list of prohibited items, including potential weapons, if one does not already exist. Visually observe vehicles entering the property, and look for prohibited items.

    Provide full camera coverage and adequate lighting for videotaping activity in the parking lots, and/or conduct periodic patrols around the parking area and visually screen for potentially dangerous items. Post signage identifying that parking areas are monitored.

    Keep the camera system in good repair to ensure continuous coverage of parking areas.

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    31. Does the house of worship have a policy to address vehicles parked for an extended period (e.g., reporting to security, local law enforcement, or tow company)? The facility does not have a policy to address extended-stay vehicles parked onsite. A vehicle may remain parked on the property for an indefinite period of time without being reported. The facility has written policies to address extended-stay vehicles. These policies have not been reviewed or shared externally. It is the responsibility of non-security force/team members to identify and report extended-stay vehicles. The facility has written policies to address extended-stay vehicles. They have shared the policy as needed (e.g., with local law enforcement). Security personnel patrol parking areas to identify and address extended-stay vehicles.

    Develop policies to address extended-stay vehicles. Install signs in the parking area to deter this practice.

    Coordinate policies that involve external reporting; for example, review the policy with local law enforcement or set up a contract with a towing company. Install signs in the parking area to deter this practice.

    Continue patrols and inspections. Maintain training for suspicious activity and search techniques. If not already done, install signs in the parking area to deter this practice.

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    32. Does the house of worship control vehicular parking and circulation onsite? The house of worship does not control access for any type of vehicle. Drivers can park any vehicle anywhere close to the facility. Many vehicle access points are available. Some parking is monitored, but not by security personnel. Signs, pavement markings, and/or orange cones are used to direct traffic, but some education and enforcement is also needed. Security personnel monitor all vehicle access. Signs, pavement markings, and/or orange cones also are used to direct traffic, and enforcement is provided. Drivers cannot park vehicles closer than 30 feet away from the facility.

    Review the access points to parking areas. Reduce the number of vehicle access points if possible. Limit access through the use of curbs, fencing, gates, and a minimum number of entry points.

    Explore ways to employ security personnel to monitor most parking areas. Identify areas that allow vehicle placement within 30-50 feet of the facility, and evaluate options to reduce the facility’s exposure to nearby vehicle placement.

    Confirm the effectiveness of vehicle monitoring, and remedy any gaps or shortfalls. Continue efforts to provide a minimum of 50 feet of standoff distance from buildings.

     Reference | More Information
    33. Does the house of worship have a high-speed avenue(s) of approach? The facility has at least one unmitigated high-speed avenue of approach. The facility has made no efforts to attempt to mitigate any high-speed approaches. The facility has one or more high-speed avenue(s) of approach and has made some attempt to mitigate at least one of these vulnerabilities. However, the results of mitigation are ineffective. Materials are too weak or ineffective for some vehicles. No high-speed avenue of approach has been effectively mitigated. The facility has one or more high-speed avenue(s) of approach and has made some attempt to mitigate at least one of these vulnerabilities. The results of mitigation are mixed. Spacing may be too wide, and materials may be too weak or ineffective for some vehicles. One approach may be effective in one area but not effective in another. The facility has mitigated one or more high-speed avenue(s) of approach using effective and correctly placed bollards, barriers, or natural materials. Mitigation may include one or many types and combinations of bollards, barriers, or natural materials as long as they are effective at mitigating any and all high-speed avenue(s) of approach. The facility does not have a high-speed avenue of approach or has mitigated high-speed avenues of approach using effective and correctly placed bollards, barriers, or natural materials. Mitigation may include one or many types and combinations of bollards, barriers, or natural materials as long as they are effective at mitigating any and all high-speed avenues of approach.

    Evaluate parking lots, and determine if long straight lines facilitate speeding. Consider whether parking lots could be reconfigured to reduce vulnerabilities. Install speed bumps to slow traffic.

    Conduct a barrier survey to evaluate effectiveness. Remedy large gaps between barriers, and replace barriers made of weak or ineffective materials.

    Conduct a barrier survey to evaluate effectiveness. Remedy large gaps between barriers, and replace barriers made of weak or ineffective materials. Ensure the most critical high-speed avenue of approach is mitigated.

    Prioritize unmitigated high-speed avenues of approach, and begin efforts to mitigate these vulnerabilities, beginning with the most critical.

    Maintain barriers, especially those made of natural materials. When construction or modification activities take place onsite, assess and address any new potential high-speed avenues of approach.

     Background | Reference | More Information
    34. What is the minimum standoff distance between the house of worship and a vehicle? The facility has an unmitigated standoff distance of less than 50 feet. Some areas may have a standoff distance of 20-30 feet or more, but the configuration has gaps. The facility has effectively enforced standoff distance by more than 20 feet. The facility has effectively enforced standoff distance by more than 50 feet. In some areas, the standoff distance from the facility is more than 50 feet. Effective barriers enforce the standoff distance.

    Allow only employee and volunteer parking near the building, and restrict visitor or general public parking to 20-50 or more feet away. Restrict parking between individual buildings. At small standoff distances, even a few feet make a large difference.

    Explore ways to increase the standoff distance from the house of worship building. Refer to Buildings and Infrastructure Protection Series Incremental Protection for Existing Commercial Buildings from Terrorist Attack (FEMA-459) for more information.

    Provide camera coverage any areas where vehicles may be place (e.g., drop-off and pick-up areas, loading and unloading zones, parking lots). Ensure the house of worship has adequate lighting capable of displaying and videotaping lot activity.

     Background | Reference | More Information
    35. Are the parking areas illuminated? The parking area is not illuminated at all or Illumination appears to be uneven and dissimilar in type causing glare and shadows with inconsistent coverage in most areas creating dark areas and shadows. Illumination appears to be similar and consistent in type; however light pattern coverage does not overlap causing shadows or dark areas. Illumination appears to be similar and uniform in type with overlapping light pattern coverage in most areas. Walkways from entrances to parking areas are illuminated.

    Install lighting on the parking areas. Ensure the lighting is even and overlapping to avoid shadows, dark areas and glare. Ensure lighting is compatible with existing or planned CCV systems.

    Develop a plan to improve lighting in parking areas. Improvements can include increasing the type and number of luminaires and/or upgrading to more modern bulb types such as LED. Ensure pathways from entrances to parking areas are well-illuminated.

    Continue to maintain the lighting system in parking areas. Develop a plan to identify and replace burned-out bulbs and clean lenses according to manufacturer specifications and timelines.

     Background | Reference | More Information





    Access Control / Entry Control

    Controlling how and when staff, parishioners, visitors, and others can access the house of worship facilities and grounds is considered an effective mechanism for protecting against different threats, including active shooters. These controls can include minimizing the number of points of entry, requiring identification, or conducting searches. However, these entry controls may sometimes run counter to the overarching objective of creating an open and inviting environment for worship and fellowship. Entry controls are part of the broader layers of defense that houses of worship may have in place to enhance security. Entry controls can help deter individuals from initiating violent attacks, detect attacks earlier at a safe distance, and delay attackers from reaching vulnerable and/or highly populated locations.

    To view Background, Reference, and/or More Information related to a question click the '+' icon below the options per question.

    QUESTION VERY LOW LOW MEDIUM HIGH VERY HIGH
    36. Does the house of worship screen persons, bags, packages, or deliveries at the facility? No screening takes place at the house of worship. Anything can be brought into the sanctuary, administrative areas or fellowship halls at any time without question. No specific screening takes place; however, ushers are trained to be aware of unusual items being brought into worship areas during primary worship services. At all other times, anything can be brought into the facility. Signs are posted that indicate no weapons are allowed. Ushers and others are trained to identify, question, screen, or prohibit items that are not otherwise identifiable (e.g., unmarked boxes, unusual or unexpected deliveries) on primary worship service days. Signs are posted that indicate no weapons are allowed. Ushers and others trained to identify, question, screen, or prohibit items that are not otherwise identifiable (e.g., unmarked boxes, unusual or unexpected deliveries) on primary worship service days. Magnetometers are used at entry points to worship areas before and during services on primary worship service day. Signs are posted that indicate no weapons are allowed. Specific locations for deliveries and all deliveries are inspected away from main entrances or offices. Magnetometers are used at entry points to worship areas before and during services at all times. On non-worship days, all visitors go through magnetometer screening upon entrance to any area of the house of worship (administrative areas, meeting halls, sanctuary, etc.).

    Limit or prohibit bags, packages, and backpacks in administrative areas or fellowship halls unless accompanied by known persons or escorts. Train ushers and administrative personnel on unusual activity and unusual packages. If possible, post signs banning weapons. Train personnel to not accept unscheduled deliveries or packages from unknown delivery services. Establish, publish, post, and distribute procedures for items brought to fellowship halls, administrative areas, and sanctuaries. This may include not allowing packages or items dropped off or unattended without notification or someone of authority in attendance. Evaluate the feasibility of magnetometer screening throughout the facility or on primary worship service days. Establish a holding area for deliveries.

    Limit or prohibit bags, packages, and backpacks in administrative areas or fellowship halls unless accompanied by known persons or escorts. Train administrative personnel on unusual activity and unusual packages. If possible, post signs banning weapons. Train personnel to not accept unscheduled deliveries or packages from unknown delivery services. Establish, publish, post, and distribute procedures for items brought to fellowship halls, administrative areas, and sanctuaries. This may include not allowing packages or items dropped off or unattended without notification or someone of authority in attendance. Evaluate the feasibility of magnetometer screening throughout the facility or on primary worship service days. Establish a holding area for deliveries.

    Limit or prohibit bags, packages, and backpacks in administrative areas or meeting halls unless accompanied by known persons or escorts. Train personnel to not accept unscheduled deliveries or packages from unknown delivery services. Establish, publish, post, and distribute procedures for items brought to fellowship halls, administrative areas, and sanctuaries. This may include not allowing packages or items dropped off or unattended without notification or someone of authority in attendance. Evaluate the feasibility of magnetometer screening throughout the facility or on primary worship service days. Establish a holding area for deliveries.

    Limit or prohibit bags, packages, and backpacks in administrative areas or meeting halls unless accompanied by known persons or escorts. Establish, publish, post, and distribute procedures for items brought to halls, administrative areas, and sanctuaries. This may include not allowing packages or items dropped off or unattended without notification or someone of authority in attendance. Evaluate the feasibility of magnetometer screening throughout the facility. Establish a holding area for deliveries.

    Limit or prohibit bags, packages, and backpacks in administrative areas or unless accompanied by known persons or escorts. Establish, publish, post, and distribute procedures for items brought to fellowship halls, administrative areas, and sanctuaries.

     Background | Reference
    37. Are doors to the facility closed and locked during services to prevent unauthorized access and limit the possibility of an intruder? Doors and windows to the house of worship and almost all administrative areas are always unlocked. A cash room or fellowship hall/meeting room is normally locked when not in use. Doors and windows to the house of worship are usually unlocked. Administrative areas are normally locked when not occupied. A cash room or fellowship hall/meeting room is normally locked when not in use. Doors and windows to the house of worship are usually locked when not occupied. Administrative areas are locked when not occupied. A cash room or fellowship hall/meeting room is locked when not in use. Doors and windows to the house of worship are usually locked when not occupied. Administrative areas are locked when not occupied and also when only one or two people are onsite. A cash room is always locked, even when occupied and a two-person rule is in place. A fellowship hall/meeting room is locked when not in use. Doors and windows to the house of worship are locked when not occupied. The doors are unlocked for a period of time before and after primary worship services, but they are attended during services so that anyone entering the building after the start time will be recognized by ushers. Administrative areas are locked when not occupied and also when only one or two people are onsite. A cash room is always locked, even when occupied, and a two-person rule is in place. A fellowship hall/meeting room is locked when not in use and are locked when practical during times of use.

    Lock the doors and windows to the house of worship when not occupied. The doors may be unlocked for a period of time before and after primary worship services, but they are attended during services so that ushers will recognize anyone entering the building after the start time. Lock administrative areas when not occupied and also when only one or two people are onsite. Always lock a cash room even when occupied and implement a two-person rule. Lock fellowship hall/ meeting rooms when not in use.

    Lock the doors and windows to the house of worship when not occupied. The doors may be unlocked for a period of time before and after primary worship services, but are attended during services so that anyone entering the building after the start time will be recognized by ushers. Lock a cash room even when occupied and implement a two-person rule. Lock fellowship hall/ meeting rooms when not in use.

    The doors and windows to the sanctuary may be unlocked for a period of time before and after primary worship services but are attended during services so that anyone entering the building after the start time will be recognized by ushers. Lock administrative areas when not occupied and also when only one or two people are onsite. Always lock a cash room even when occupied, and implement a two-person rule.

    The doors and windows to the sanctuary may be unlocked for a period of time before and after primary worship services but are attended during services so that anyone entering the building after the start time will be recognized by ushers.

    Maintain door and window locks. Continue to train ushers or the security team on access control.

     Background | Reference
    38. Can facility doors be easily closed and locked to prevent access? All lockable doors have key cylinder locks. Exterior doors have access card control. Interior doors may have a mix of locksets that include keyed cylinder. Exterior and interior doors use access card control.

    Most card access control systems, electronic or mechanical pin pad locks are an upgrade to hardware store key cylinder locksets. Review all locksets and establish a plan to upgrade from key cylinder. Evaluate hinges windows and door frames for other weaknesses.

    Review all locksets and establish a plan to upgrade from keyed cylinder. Evaluate hinges windows and door frames for other weaknesses.

    Maintain the card access control system. Evaluate hinges windows and door frames for other weaknesses. Evaluate hinges windows and door frames for other weaknesses.

     Reference
    39. Do exterior double doors have handles that can be tied or chained together to prevent emergency evacuation or access by first responders? Exterior double doors have handles that could be tied or chained together to prevent egress or first responder access. The hardware on exterior double doors has been removed, replaced, or is designed so the doors cannot be chained or tied together. Interior double doors have not been addressed. The hardware on both exterior and interior double doors has been removed, replaced, or is designed so the doors cannot be chained or tied together.

    Change the hardware on both exterior and interior double doors so that it cannot be chained or tied together.

    Evaluate interior double doors and where possible, modify or replace the hardware so that it cannot be chained or tied together.

    Maintain door hardware. Evaluate other areas that may prevent access to first responders.

     Background | Reference
    40. Does the house of worship have a key control program or defined process for card access? The house of worship has no specific key control process. Certain members of the facility have keys and share as needed. The facility does not track duplicates or lost keys. The facility has no card access system. Certain members of the facility have keys, and a master key is locked in a separate, access-controlled area. Duplicates or lost keys are not always tracked, but the facility is aware of the importance of maintaining control of keys. A card access system may exist but is maintained by a single person, and no records check of that person’s actions takes place. Keys are maintained in a locked container. Lost keys are reported and when necessary, and locks are replaced. Duplicates are serial-numbered, recorded, and tracked. A card access control system exists. At least two trusted members of the facility maintain the card access database. Changes to the database occur monthly allowing some cards to possibly be active when in fact the card access should have been removed. Keys are used, but use is minimal. Keys are maintained in a locked container. Lost keys are reported and when necessary locks are replaced. Duplicates are serial-numbered, recorded, tracked, and stamped “do not duplicate.” A card access control system exists. At least two trusted members of the facility maintain the card access database. Changes to the database occur weekly allowing some cards to possibly be active when in fact the card access should have been removed. Keys are not used except for a few internal doors. Keys are maintained in a locked container. Lost keys are reported and locksets changed when a key is lost. Duplicates are serial-numbered, recorded, tracked, and stamped “do not duplicate.” Card access control system exists. At least two trusted members of the facility maintain the card access database. Changes to the database occur when card access is revoked.

    Establish a key control program. Ensure only certain members of the facility have keys and a master key is locked in a separate, access-controlled area. Track all duplicates and lost keys. When necessary, change the locks. Consider implementation of a card access system. If a card access system is implemented, task at least two trusted members of the facility with maintaining the card access database. When card access is revoked, make immediate changes to the database.

    Establish a key control program. Ensure all duplicates are serial-numbered, recorded, and tracked. Lost keys should be recorded and tracked. When necessary, change the locks. If a card access system is implemented, task at least two trusted members of the facility with maintaining the card access database. When card access is revoked, make immediate changes to the database.

    Minimize the use of keys, and maintain the key control program. Continue to improve the card access system. Ensure database changes are immediate.

    Maintain the key control program. Update the card access database immediately upon termination of employees or volunteers.

    Stay current with card access technology to prevent hacking of the system.

     Background | Reference
    41. Does the construction of exterior doors and windows deter or delay an attack? Exterior windows are tempered glass and can be opened. The windows are large enough and at a height that an adult could climb through them when open. Doors are mostly glass or metal-framed glass. Most exterior windows are small (i.e., a teenager cannot climb through) and not operational. The facility has some exterior operational windows that are larger. Most doors are wood or steel and have minimal glass. The facility has no exterior windows, or the exterior windows are tall and narrow or are difficult to access. They are too small to allow anyone to pass through them. They cannot be opened and use reinforced glass. Doors are wood or steel and have minimal or no glass.

    Publish and distribute guidance to avoid areas with glass features during an attack. Determine if it is practical to use wood or steel doors with smaller areas of glass. Replacing windows with smaller, nonoperational windows is an expensive option and may not be possible. If that is the case, close and lock windows at all times. If the house of worship requires windows to be open for ventilation, ensure everyone knows how to close and lock a window in an emergency. Other possibilities include installing heavy window coverings that can be lowered or slide on tracks and that can be positioned quickly or even remotely. This may provide some concealment from an attacker.

    Publish and distribute guidance to avoid areas with glass features during an attack. Replacing windows with smaller, nonoperational windows is an expensive option and may not be possible. If that is the case, close and lock windows at all times. If the house of worship requires windows to be open for ventilation, ensure everyone knows how to close and lock a window in an emergency. Other possibilities include installing heavy window coverings that can be lowered or slide on tracks and that can be positioned quickly or even remotely. This may provide some concealment from an attacker. Ensure ushers or other volunteers know how to close and lock the windows.

    Publish and distribute guidance to avoid areas with glass features during an attack.

     Background | Reference
    42. Does the facility have some type of intrusion detection system (IDS)/alarm system in place? (The IDS may be an internal system or an external contract service.) The house of worship has no IDS. The house of worship has an IDS of some type on primary doors. Windows do not have IDS. The house of worship has an IDS on all doors and windows.

    Install an alarm system. This may be an internal system tied to a CCV system or a contract service that monitors, reports, and dispatches police as needed.

    Install a complete alarm system to include glass breakage sensor. This may be an internal system tied to a CCV system or a contract service that monitors, reports, and dispatches police as needed.

    Test and maintain the alarm system. Consider upgrades that tie into a CCV system.

     Reference
    43. Does the interior layout of the facility provide escape routes for effective emergency egress? The facility’s interior consists of long fixed rows (i.e., holding 25 or more people in a row without a break) without breaks. The pews or chairs are affixed to the floor and difficult to move quickly. The facility’s interior consists of long fixed rows without breaks. Some, but not all pews, chairs, or benches are affixed to the floor and difficult to move quickly. The facility’s interior consists of rows with reasonable breaks. Some sections may be pews or chairs affixed to the floor while other sections can be easily and quickly moved. Some have shorter rows of collapsible chairs. (Reasonable is defined as less than 12 people in a row.) The house of worship has chairs, benches, and pews that can be easily moved and adjusted as needed. The house of worship has no chairs, pews, fixed benches, etc. It is an open space with no obstructed exits.

    Review the facility’s current configuration and determine the feasibility of shorter rows. Try to create aisles or paths that allow faster exit. Avoid using chairs that hook together or are affixed to the floor, if possible. Coordinate with local code management and fire departments for guidance.

    Review the facility’s current configuration and determine the feasibility of shorter rows. Try to create aisles or paths that allow faster exit. Avoid using chairs that hook together or are affixed to the floor, if possible. Coordinate with local code management and fire departments for guidance.

    Avoid using chairs that hook together or are affixed to the floor, if possible. Coordinate with local code management and fire departments for guidance.

    Evaluate the possibility of creating more open space, flexible seating, or an open floor area with no seating. Coordinate with local code management and fire departments for guidance.

    Coordinate with local code management and fire departments for guidance. Ensure exits are clearly marked and accessible.

     Background | Reference
    44. Does the interior of the facility provide easy access to multiple exits? The house of worship has a single, congested main entrance area. A couple other single wide fire escape doors exist that would easily become crowded or overwhelmed during an emergency evacuation. The house of worship has a large main entrance that is occasionally crowded or obstructed. Numerous other exits throughout the main area of the facility may be crowded or overwhelmed during an emergency evacuation. The house of worship has a large main entrance that rarely is crowded or obstructed. Numerous other easy access exits throughout the main area of the facility would likely not be crowded or overwhelmed during an emergency evacuation.

    Evaluate the feasibility of adding exit doors. Coordinate with building code and fire code enforcement personnel.

    Coordinate with building and fire code enforcement personnel and determine if additional exits should be added or existing exits modified to improve the exit process.

    Ensure all pathways and exits remain open and accessible. Possibly implement group rally or check points for accountability.

     Background | Reference





    Closed-circuit Video/Video Surveillance Systems

    CCV and VSS are electronic systems of cameras, control equipment, recorders, and related apparatus used for surveillance or alarm assessment. These systems can help deter individuals from initiating armed attacks and detect these attacks earlier at a safe distance. CCV/VSS technology options include a range of technologies (e.g., digital or analog, fiber or wireless transmission) and features (e.g., color or black-and-white video, adjustable side-to-side or up-and-down movement of cameras, wide-angle or zoom views). They also can include software that helps identify anomalies and ultimately the ability of users to identify suspicious behaviors. Occasionally houses of worship may have dedicated security staff who monitor these systems in real time, or they may only view recorded information in response to specific incidents or inquiries. Following an incident, CCV/VSS data can provide valuable forensic information that first responders can use in response efforts and follow-on investigations. Surveillance cameras can be used to monitor common areas that are not within the normal view of staff, leaders, or security personnel. Video surveillance can also streamline access control procedures, allowing administrative or security personnel to monitor and control locked entrances remotely when used with intercoms and remote control door locks, if practical.

    To view Background, Reference, and/or More Information related to a question click the '+' icon below the options per question.

    QUESTION VERY LOW LOW MEDIUM HIGH VERY HIGH
    45. Does the house of worship have a camera system? The house of worship has no camera system in place. The house of worship has cameras, but coverage of sensitive areas is minimal. Cameras are in place and effective in most areas. Some entrances and sensitive areas may lack coverage. Cameras cover most of the house of worship, including entrances and sensitive areas. Camera coverage is complete and covers all areas of the house of worship, including entrances and sensitive areas.

    Explore the option of installing a camera system onsite. If this undertaking is feasible and appropriate for the house of worship, install cameras throughout the building to enable staff and possibly first responders to identify and assess threats.

    Conduct a camera system survey to identify areas where coverage is lacking. Update the system to increase coverage.

    Conduct a camera system survey to identify areas where coverage may be lacking. Ensure all entrances and sensitive areas have camera coverage.

    Conduct a camera system survey to identify any areas where coverage may still be lacking.

    Conduct a camera system survey to confirm camera coverage is sufficient.

     Background | Reference
    46. Does the system use an effective combination of camera type?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a camera system.
    The camera system typically uses a single fixed camera to provide coverage for each entrance. Some cameras may not be effective under some lighting conditions. Some cameras may not be the best choice for a given application. An effective mix of camera types is used and accounts for changes in illumination.

    Conduct a camera system survey to identify areas where cameras are ineffective. Based on the results of the survey, perform system updates.

    Conduct a camera system survey to identify areas where cameras are ineffective. Based on the results of the survey, perform system updates.

    Conduct a camera system survey to confirm the effectiveness of each camera in use. Confirm that area lighting is compatible with each camera.

     Background | Reference
    47. Is the system monitored during services or events?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a camera system.
    No real-time monitoring of the camera system occurs. Untrained staff members may look at the CCV/VSS monitors on occasion or when notified of an incident. They are usually focused on their other primary duties. Trained staff members monitor the CCV/VSS and do not have additional duties that could distract them from monitoring the system. However, they must follow too many screens at once (typically more than eight). They do not receive regular breaks, which impacts their ability to monitor multiple camera feeds effectively. Trained, dedicated staff members monitor the CCV/VSS and are not overwhelmed by too many screens (typically eight or less). No single person monitors the camera system for an extended period of time (i.e., more than 15 minutes). Trained, dedicated staff members effectively monitor the CCV/VSS. Monitoring staff frequently rotate shifts (every 10-15 minutes), and the number of cameras each staff member monitors is limited to eight or fewer. The system is equipped with capabilities that aid in the determination of suspicious activity.

    Employ staff to monitor the camera system. If possible, provide a camera monitor in an administrative office visible to both staff and visitors and first responders.

    Provide training to monitoring staff, and reduce or, if possible, eliminate their other duties.

    Explore options to maximize the effectiveness of monitoring and observation, such as frequently rotating shifts for staff and limiting the number of cameras each staff member monitors.

    Explore the feasibility of procuring a software program that aids in the determination of suspicious activity.

    Explore the options of providing local law enforcement with the capability to access and monitor the camera system. Law enforcement personnel may easily view Internet protocol cameras remotely.

     Background | Reference
    48. Is information recorded and reviewed?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a camera system.
    The house of worship does not record information that the CCV/VSS captures. Personnel review recorded information only after an incident. The storage capability is limited to a week or less, so many events are not available after the fact. The house of worship stores recorded information for at least a month. Personnel review information for suspicious activity, not only after an incident.

    Install video recording and storage systems. Develop a policy for the review of recorded information (e.g., periodically or only after an incident). Recorded information can support investigations.

    Increase the camera system’s storage capacity, preferably to a month.

    Increase the camera system’s storage capacity to a minimum of 90 days.

     Background | Reference
    49. What is the overall condition of the camera system?

    Skip this question if the house of worship does not have a camera system.
    The CCV/VSS needs maintenance and updates. The system lacks backup power. The CCV/VSS is in good condition, but some cameras are inoperable, even in key locations. Maintenance or repair is contracted work. The system has backup power. All cameras are in good working condition. Continuous updates occur on the CCV/VSS, and it is routinely tested. Maintenance or repair, when needed, is performed “in house.” The system has backup power.

    Perform maintenance and system updates. Repair or replace any inoperable cameras, especially those in key locations. Explore options to provide backup power for the camera system.

    Repair or replace any inoperable cameras. Ensure continuous updates are applied to the system, and test it routinely.

    Evaluate the comprehensiveness of camera system tests. Testing should ensure the cameras work properly and should include an assessment of camera views. It may include switching the system to operate on backup power.

     Background | Reference





    Action Items


     

     How to format the exported .csv file after downloading
    Category Vulnerability Options for Consideration
         


    Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment Report


     How to print if Microsoft Word is not available

    Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment Results for BkMrkFacName


    On BkMrkDate, personnel representing the BkMrkFacName conducted a security self-assessment using the Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment developed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).

    This report summarizes the results of that process, listing vulnerabilities (i.e., areas where the facility could improve) and options for consideration (i.e., strategies for enhancing security) that were identified using the guided self-assessment tool. These options outline specific actions that facility personnel can prioritize based on their existing security practices and available resources.

    Completion of this self-assessment is one step in a broader process of improving physical security at BkMrkFacName_PDF. Ongoing efforts to improve security and manage risk will support the organization’s mission to provide a safe environment for its congregants.


    Results from Self-Assessment

    The table below summarizes the results of the self-assessment completed by BkMrkFacName_PDF. The information includes the following content:
    • Section: six sections addressing core elements of physical security at houses of worship (i.e., security and emergency management; security force; perimeter security and delineation; parking and barriers; access control and entry control; and closed-circuit video and video surveillance systems)
    • Vulnerability: potential security concern that leaves a house of worship susceptible to different types of threats
    • Option for Consideration: potential actions that houses of worship can take to address identified vulnerabilities

    Category Vulnerability Option for Consideration
    Blank Blank Blank
    BkMrkObs

    Next Steps

    Develop a Prioritization Plan

    If not already established, form an internal team to evaluate and prioritize the options for consideration identified in this report, taking into account the facility's characteristics, budgetary outlook, and relevant local regulations.


    Connect with Federal, State, and Local Authorities

    Use this report as a starting point for engagement with local law enforcement or state and federal partners who can assist your organization in improving its physical security. CISA has Protective Security Advisors in each state across the country who can provide guidance on available resources, coordination of local assets, and suggestions on implementing the actions identified in this report.


    Use to Inform Investment Justifications for Organizational Budgets and Grants

    Explore different options that may be available for resourcing actions identified in this report. Houses of worship may be able to address some of the options for consideration identified in this report by applying existing organizational resources. In addition, public and private partners manage grant programs focused on improving facility security. The results of this self-assessment may serve as an input into grant program applications, depending on program focus areas and application requirements.

    Reference Materials for Houses of Worship

    Security/Emergency Management

    Security Force

    Perimeter Security / Delineation

    Parking and Barriers

    Access Control / Entry Control

    Closed-circuit Video / Video Surveillance Systems

    Acronyms and Abbreviations

    ADL
    Anti-Defamation League
    CCV
    Closed-circuit Video
    CISA
    Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency
    CPG
    Comprehensive Preparedness Guide
    CPTED
    Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design
    DHS
    U.S. Department of Homeland Security
    DOJ
    U.S. Department of Justice
    ED
    U.S. Department of Education
    FBI
    Federal Bureau of Investigation
    FB-ISAO
    Faith-Based Information Sharing & Analysis Organization
    FEMA
    Federal Emergency Management Agency
    HHS
    U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
    HSEEP
    Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program
    ISC
    Interagency Security Committee
    NIJ
    National Institute of Justice
    NSI
    Nationwide SAR Initiative
    PTZ
    Pan-tilt-zoom
    SAMHSA
    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
    VSS
    Video Surveillance System

    Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment Results for BkMrkFacName


    On BkMrkDate, personnel representing the BkMrkFacName conducted a security self-assessment using the Houses of Worship Security Self-Assessment developed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).

    This report summarizes the results of that process, listing vulnerabilities (i.e., areas where the facility could improve) and options for consideration (i.e., strategies for enhancing security) that were identified using the guided self-assessment tool. These options outline specific actions that facility personnel can prioritize based on their existing security practices and available resources.

    Completion of this self-assessment is one step in a broader process of improving physical security at BkMrkFacName. Ongoing efforts to improve security and manage risk will support the organization’s mission to provide a safe environment for its congregants.


    Results from Self-Assessment

    The table below summarizes the results of the self-assessment completed by BkMrkFacName. The information includes the following content:
    • Section: six sections addressing core elements of physical security at houses of worship (i.e., security and emergency management; security force; perimeter security and delineation; parking and barriers; access control and entry control; and closed-circuit video and video surveillance systems)
    • Vulnerability: potential security concern that leaves a house of worship susceptible to different types of threats
    • Option for Consideration: potential actions that houses of worship can take to address identified vulnerabilities
    BkMrkObs

    Next Steps

    Develop a Prioritization Plan

    If not already established, form an internal team to evaluate and prioritize the options for consideration identified in this report, taking into account the facility's characteristics, budgetary outlook, and relevant local regulations.


    Connect with Federal, State, and Local Authorities

    Use this report as a starting point for engagement with local law enforcement or state and federal partners who can assist your organization in improving its physical security. CISA has Protective Security Advisors in each state across the country who can provide guidance on available resources, coordination of local assets, and suggestions on implementing the actions identified in this report.


    Use to Inform Investment Justifications for Organizational Budgets and Grants

    Explore different options that may be available for resourcing actions identified in this report. Houses of worship may be able to address some of the options for consideration identified in this report by applying existing organizational resources. In addition, public and private partners manage grant programs focused on improving facility security. The results of this self-assessment may serve as an input into grant program applications, depending on program focus areas and application requirements.



    Reference Materials for Houses of Worship

    Security/Emergency Management

    Security Force

    Perimeter Security / Delineation

    Parking and Barriers

    Access Control / Entry Control

    Closed-circuit Video / Video Surveillance Systems

    Acronyms and Abbreviations

    ADL
    Anti-Defamation League
    CCV
    Closed-circuit Video
    CISA
    Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency
    CPG
    Comprehensive Preparedness Guide
    CPTED
    Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design
    DHS
    U.S. Department of Homeland Security
    DOJ
    U.S. Department of Justice
    ED
    U.S. Department of Education
    Federal Bureau of Investigation
    FB-ISAO
    Faith-Based Information Sharing & Analysis Organization
    FEMA
    Federal Emergency Management Agency
    HHS
    U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
    HSEEP
    Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program
    ISC
    Interagency Security Committee
    NIJ
    National Institute of Justice
    NSI
    Nationwide SAR Initiative
    PTZ
    Pan-tilt-zoom
    SAMHSA
    Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
    VSS
    Video Surveillance System

       



    House Of Worship Self Assessment Questions

     
    Security/Emergency Management
    Does the house of worship have a security manager or security committee to make security management decisions?
    Does the house of worship have a written security and emergency operations plan(s)?
    Are employees and volunteers trained on the security and emergency operations plan(s)?
    Are congregants trained on elements of the security and emergency operations plan(s)?
    Has the house of worship coordinated the security and emergency operations plan(s) with first responders?
    Does the facility exercise the security and emergency operations plan(s)?
    Does the facility have lockdown, lockout, and shelter-in-place procedures?
    Does the house of worship have mass notification capabilities?
    Does the house of worship have crisis communications plans and procedures?
    Does the house of worship receive threat information, security-related bulletins, advisories, or alerts from an external source?
    Does the house of worship participate in any external security or emergency preparedness working groups?
    Does the house of worship conduct background checks on employees and volunteers?
    Does the facility provide security information to employees, volunteers, and congregants?
    Does the facility have procedures for bomb threats and suspicious items?
    Does the house of worship have cash management controls?
     
    Security Force
    Does the facility have a security force or security team to carry out daily security operations?
    What security training does the facility provide to the security force, employees, and/or volunteers/members who fulfil security roles?
    Does the security force/team conduct security-related inspections or screening of the facility before people gather?
    Does the security force/team have communications, equipment, or panic alarms?
    Does the facility assign personnel to provide a security presence during times of critical vulnerability (i.e., during congregant arrival/departure, special events)?
    Does the security force have designated posts/patrols and written post orders or basic instructions for security tasks?
    Are ushers, greeters, and volunteers trained in security awareness and threat detection?
    Are mechanisms in place for employees, volunteers, and congregants to report behaviors that raise safety concerns to the security force and/or the house of worship leadership?
     
    Perimeter Security/Delineation
    Does the house of worship have a well-established perimeter using natural materials or fencing/walls?
    Does the house of worship have natural surveillance from the building to the outer perimeter?
    Are public and private spaces separated?
    If the facility has a fence or a wall, what is its purpose?
    Does the house of worship have gates?
    Is the perimeter illuminated?
     
    Parking and Barriers
    Are vehicles parked at the house of worship monitored?
    Does the house of worship have a policy to address vehicles parked for an extended period (e.g., reporting to security, local law enforcement, or tow company)?
    Does the house of worship control vehicular parking and circulation onsite?
    Does the house of worship have a high-speed avenue(s) of approach?
    What is the minimum standoff distance between the house of worship and a vehicle?
    Are the parking areas illuminated?
     
    Access Control/Entry Control
    Does the house of worship screen persons, bags, packages, or deliveries at the facility?
    Are doors to the facility closed and locked during services to prevent unauthorized access and limit the possibility of an intruder?
    Can facility doors be easily closed and locked to prevent access?
    Do exterior double doors have handles that can be tied or chained together to prevent emergency evacuation or access by first responders?
    Does the house of worship have a key control program or defined process for card access?
    Does the construction of exterior doors and windows deter or delay an attack?
    Does the facility have some type of intrusion detection system (IDS)/alarm system in place? (The IDS may be an internal system or an external contract service.)
    Does the interior layout of the facility provide escape routes for effective emergency egress?
    Does the interior of the facility provide easy access to multiple exits?
     
    Closed-circuit Video/Video Surveillance Systems
    Does the house of worship have a camera system?
    Does the system use an effective combination of camera type?
    Is the system monitored during services or events?
    Is information recorded and reviewed?
    What is the overall condition of the camera system?

       

       



    Options for Consideration References

     
    Security/Emergency Management
    • Anti-Defamation League (ADL), ADL Guide to Protecting Your Religious or Communal Institution, 2017, https://www.adl.org/sites/default/files/documents/adl-guide-to-protecting-your-religious-or-communal-institution-2017.pdf.
    • ADL, Homepage, 2020, https://www.adl.org.
    • ASIS Houses of Worship Committee, Recommended Best Practices for Securing Houses of Worship Around the World, 2017, https://www.asisonline.org/globalassets/get-involved/councils/documents/best-practices-securing-houses-of-worship.pdf.
    • ASIS International, Auditing Management Systems: Risk, Resilience, Security, and Continuity—Guidance for Application (ANSI/ASIS SPC.2-2014), Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2014.
    • Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Threat Assessment Guide for Houses of Worship, 2004, https://www.hsdl.org/?view&did=447823.
    • City of Fairfax Office of Emergency Management, Model Emergency Operations Plan for Houses of Worship, 2014, http://www.fairfaxva.gov/Home/ShowDocument?id=7314.
    • U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), “Crisis Communications Plan,” January 21, 2016, https://www.ready.gov/business/implementation/crisis.
    • DHS, “Exercises,” undated, https://www.ready.gov/business/testing/exercises.
    • DHS, Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP), 2020, https://preptoolkit.fema.gov/documents/1269813/1269861/HSEEP_Revision_Apr13_Final.pdf/65bc7843-1d10-47b7-bc0d-45118a4d21da.
    • DHS, “If You See Something, Say Something®,” undated, https://www.dhs.gov/see-something-say-something.
    • DHS, “Nationwide SAR Initiative (NSI),” undated, https://www.dhs.gov/nsi.
    • DHS, NIPP 2013: Partnering for Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience, 2013, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/national-infrastructure-protection-plan-2013-508.pdf.
    • DHS, Online Suspicious Activity Reporting (SAR) Training for Law Enforcement and Hometown Security Partners, undated, https://www.dhs.gov/nationwide-sar-initiative-nsi/online-sar-training.
    • DHS, “Protective Security Advisors,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/protective-security-advisors.
    • DHS, Security of Soft Targets and Crowded Places–Resource Guide, April 2019, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/19_0424_cisa_soft-targets-and-crowded-places-resource-guide.pdf.
    • DHS, “Stop the Bleed,” November 25, 2019, https://www.dhs.gov/stopthebleed.
    • DHS, “Training,” undated, https://www.ready.gov/business/implementation/training.
    • DHS and DOJ, Bomb Threat Guidance, 2016, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/dhs-doj-bomb-threat-guidance-brochure-2016-508.pdf.
    • DHS and ISC, Best Practices for Safe Mail Handling, undated, https://www.fbiic.gov/public/2010/nov/safe_Mail_Handling.pdf.
    • DHS, U.S. Department of Education (ED), U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Guide for Developing High-Quality Emergency Operations Plans for Houses of Worship, June 2013, https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/20130726-1919-25045-2833/developing_eops_for_houses_of_worship_final.pdf.
    • DHS Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA), “Active Shooter Emergency Action Plan Guide and Template,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/publication/active-shooter-emergency-action-plan-guide.
    • DHS CISA, “Active Shooter Emergency Action Plan Video,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/active-shooter-emergency-action-plan-video.
    • DHS CISA, “Active Shooter Preparedness,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/active-shooter-preparedness.
    • DHS CISA, “Bomb Threat Training Video,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/what-to-do-bomb-threat.
    • DHS CISA, “Unattended vs. Suspicious Item Postcard and Poster,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/publication/unattended-vs-suspicious-item-postcard-and-poster.
    • DHS CISA, “What To Do – Bomb Threat,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/what-to-do-bomb-threat.
    • DHS Office for Bombing Prevention, “AWR-335 — Response to Suspicious Behaviors and Items for Bombing Prevention (RSBI),” undated, https://cdp.dhs.gov/obp.
    • DHS Office for Bombing Prevention, Bomb Threat Checklist, 2014, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/dhs-bomb-threat-checklist-2014-508.pdf.
    • DOJ FBI, FBI Bomb Data Center, General Information Bulleting 2012-1: The Bomb Threat Challenge, undated, http://cdpsdocs.state.co.us/safeschools/Resources/FBI/FBI-BombThreatChallenge-1.pdf.
    • DOJ’s Community Relations Service, https://www.justice.gov/crs, and its program, Protecting Places of Worship, https://www.justice.gov/file/1058496/download.
    • ECCU, Handling Cash: A Common-Sense Approach to Securing Your Ministry’s Most Liquid Asset, undated, https://www.eccu.org/assets/white_paper_pages/22/pdfs.pdf.
    • Faith-Based Information Sharing & Analysis Organization (FB-ISAO), “Services,” 2020, https://faithbased-isao.org/services.
    • FB-ISAO, “Working Groups,” 2020, https://faithbased-isao.org/membership/working-groups.
    • Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), “HSEEP Policy and Guidance,” undated, https://preptoolkit.fema.gov/web/hseep-resources.
    • FEMA, Developing and Maintaining Emergency Operations Plans, November 2010, https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/20130726-1828-25045-0014/cpg_101_comprehensive_preparedness_guide_developing_and_maintaining_emergency_operations_plans_2010.pdf.
    • FEMA, “National Incident Management System,” August 10, 2015, https://training.fema.gov/nims/.
    • FEMA, “Public and Community Safe Rooms,” February 16, 2016, https://www.fema.gov/public-and-community-safe-rooms.
    • FEMA, “You Are the Help Until Help Arrives,” undated, https://community.fema.gov/until-help-arrives.
    • FEMA Emergency Management Institute, “IS-120.C: An Introduction to Exercises,” September 12, 2019, https://training.fema.gov/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-120.c.
    • FEMA Emergency Management Institute, “IS-360: Preparing for Mass Casualty Incidents: A Guide for Schools, Higher Education, and Houses of Worship,” September 12, 2019, https://training.fema.gov/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-360.
    • FEMA Emergency Management Institute, “IS-906 Workplace Security Awareness Training,” September 12, 2019, https://training.fema.gov/emiweb/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-906.
    • Interagency Security Committee (ISC), Facility Security Plan: An Interagency Security Committee Guide, 1st edition, February 2015, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/ISC-Facility-Security-Plan-Guide-2015-508.pdf.
    • ISC, Planning and Response to an Active Shooter: An Interagency Security Committee Policy and Best Practices Guide, November 2015, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/isc-planning-response-active-shooter-guide-non-fouo-nov-2015-508.pdf
    • Lockyer, Bill, and Delaine Eastin, Partnering for Safe Schools, undated, https://www.cde.ca.gov/ls/ss/cp/documents/crisisrespbox.pdf.
    • National Criminal Justice Reference Service, Safeguarding Houses of Worship toolkit, https://www.justnet.org/resources/Houses_of_Worship.html.
    • National Disaster Interfaiths Network, “Disaster Tip Sheets for U.S. Religious Leaders,” 2007, http://www.n-din.org/ndin_resources/ndin_tips_sheets_v1208.php.
    • State of New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, Facility Self-Assessment, January 2019, https://static1.squarespace.com/static/54d79f88e4b0db3478a04405/t/5c3e22af898583ec9bab10ae/1547575983886/Facility+Self+Assessment+Tool+January+2019.pdf.
    • State of New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, Role of Security Coordinators, undated, https://static1.squarespace.com/static/54d79f88e4b0db3478a04405/t/5a4d52ee53450af96083504f/1515016942789/Role+of+Security+Coordinators.pdf.
    • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), “Communications,” May 28, 2019, https://www.samhsa.gov/dtac/dbhis-collections/disaster-response-template-toolkit/communications.
    • SAMHSA, Communicating in a Crisis: Risk Communication Guidelines for Public Officials, 2019, https://store.samhsa.gov/system/files/pep19-01-01-005.pdf.
    • SAMHSA, “Disaster Response Templates: Messaging Through Other Media,” October 21, 2019, https://www.samhsa.gov/dtac/dbhis-collections/disaster-response-template-toolkit/messaging-through-other-media.
    • United Jewish Communities, Emergency Planning: Disaster and Crisis Response Systems for Jewish Organizations, 2003-2005, http://www.jcrcny.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/EmergencyManual.2.0.pdf.
    • Walsh, T.J., and R.J. Healy, Protection of Assets: Crisis Management, Michael E. Knoke, Ed., Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2011.
    • Walsh, T.J., and R.J. Healy, Protection of Assets: Investigation, Michael E. Knoke, Ed., Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2011
    Security Force
    • ADL, ADL Guide to Protecting Your Religious or Communal Institution, 2017, https://www.adl.org/sites/default/files/documents/adl-guide-to-protecting-your-religious-or-communal-institution-2017.pdf.
    • ASIS Houses of Worship Committee, Recommended Best Practices for Securing Houses of Worship Around the World, 2017, https://www.asisonline.org/globalassets/get-involved/councils/documents/best-practices-securing-houses-of-worship.pdf.
    • ASIS International, Facilities Physical Security Measures: ASIS GDL FPSM-2009.
    • ASIS International, Protection of Assets: Security Officer Operations, Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2011.
    • ASIS International Cultural Properties Council, “Council Resources: Understanding IoT & Hostile Surveillance,” March 7, 2018, https://www.asisonline.org/publications--resources/news/blog/council-resources-understanding-iot--hostile-surveillance/.
    • Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Threat Assessment Guide for Houses of Worship, 2004, accessed January 20, 2020, https://www.hsdl.org/?view&did=447823.
    • DHS, “Protect Your Everyday Public Service Announcement,” undated, https://www.dhs.gov/see-something-say-something/campaign-materials/protect-your-every-day-psa.
    • DHS, “Stop the Bleed,” November 25, 2019, https://www.dhs.gov/stopthebleed.
    • DHS, ED, DOJ, FBI, and HHS, Guide for Developing High-Quality Emergency Operations Plans for Houses of Worship, June 2013, accessed January 20, 2020, https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/20130726-1919-25045-2833/developing_eops_for_houses_of_worship_final.pdf
    • DHS CISA, “Active Shooter Preparedness,” undated, https://www.cisa.gov/active-shooter-preparedness.
    • DHS CISA, Houses of Worship: Hometown Security Report Series, May 2017, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/19_0603_cisa_hsrs-houses-of-worship-pscd.pdf.
    • FEMA, “National Incident Management System,” August 10, 2015, https://training.fema.gov/nims/.
    • FEMA, “You Are the Help Until Help Arrives,” undated, https://community.fema.gov/until-help-arrives.
    • FEMA Emergency Management Institute, “IS-360: Preparing for Mass Casualty Incidents: A Guide for Schools, Higher Education, and Houses of Worship,” September 12, 2019, https://training.fema.gov/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-360.
    • FEMA Emergency Management Institute, “IS-906 Workplace Security Awareness Training,” September 12, 2019, https://training.fema.gov/emiweb/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-906.
    • ISC, Planning and Response to an Active Shooter: An Interagency Security Committee Policy and Best Practices Guide, February 2015, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/isc-planning-response-active-shooter-guide-non-fouo-nov-2015-508.pdf.
    • McLamb, Jennie-Leigh, Keeping Religious Institutions Secure, Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann 2015.
    • Knoke, Michael E., Physical Security Principles, Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2015.
    • National Disaster Interfaiths Network, Active Shooter in a House of Worship, undated, http://www.n-din.org/ndin_resources/tipsheets_v1208/07_NDIN_TS_ActiveShooter.pdf.
    • Norman, Thomas L., Risk Analysis and Security Countermeasure Selection, Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 2010.
    • Secure Community Network, Firearms and the Faithful: Approaches to Armed Security in Jewish Communities, January 2020, https://cdn.fedweb.org/fed-91/2/FirearmsandtheFaithful%255B2%255D%25281%2529.pdf.
    Perimeter Security/Delineation
    • ASIS Houses of Worship Committee, Recommended Best Practices for Securing Houses of Worship Around the World, 2017, https://www.asisonline.org/globalassets/get-involved/councils/documents/best-practices-securing-houses-of-worship.pdf.
    • ASIS International, Facilities Physical Security Measures: ASIS GDL FPSM-2009.
    • Chain Link Fence Manufacturers Institute, “Chain Link Fence Manufacturers Institute Security Fencing Recommendation,” 2017, https://chainlinkinfo.org/security-fencing-guidelines/.
    • Crowe, Timothy D., Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design, 3rd edition, Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann, 2013.
    • DHS, Site and Urban Design for Security: Guidance against Potential Terrorist Attacks (FEMA-430), December 2007, https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/20130726-1624-20490-9648/fema430.pdf.
    • Knoke, Michael E., Physical Security Principles, Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2015.
    • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Policy Development and Research, Creating Defensible Space, April 1996, https://www.huduser.gov/publications/pdf/def.pdf.
    Parking and Barriers
    • ASIS Houses of Worship Committee, Recommended Best Practices for Securing Houses of Worship Around the World, 2017, https://www.asisonline.org/globalassets/get-involved/councils/documents/best-practices-securing-houses-of-worship.pdf.
    • ASIS International, Facilities Physical Security Measures: ASIS GDL FPSM-2009.
    • ASIS International Cultural Properties Council, “Council Resources: Understanding IoT & Hostile Surveillance,” March 7, 2018, https://www.asisonline.org/publications--resources/news/blog/council-resources-understanding-iot--hostile-surveillance/.
    • DHS, Building and Infrastructure Protection: Series Reference Manual to Mitigate Potential Terrorist Attacks Against Buildings (FEMA 426/BIPS-06), 2nd edition, October 2011, https://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/st/st-bips-06.pdf.
    • DHS, Site and Urban Design for Security: Guidance against Potential Terrorist Attacks (FEMA-430), December 2007, https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/20130726-1624-20490-9648/fema430.pdf.
    • Knoke, Michael E., Physical Security Principles, Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2015.
    Access Control/Entry Control
    • ASIS Houses of Worship Committee, Recommended Best Practices for Securing Houses of Worship Around the World, 2017, https://www.asisonline.org/globalassets/get-involved/councils/documents/best-practices-securing-houses-of-worship.pdf.
    • Hestermann, Jennifer, Soft Target Hardening: Protecting People From Attack, 2nd edition, New York: Routledge, 2018.
    • InstaKey Security Systems, “6 Key Control Program Best Practices,” 2019, http://info.instakey.com/accessintelligence/6-key-control-program-best-practices.
    • ISC, Facility Security Plan: An Interagency Security Committee Guide, 1st edition, February 2015, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/ISC-Facility-Security-Plan-Guide-2015-508.pdf.
    • Ratliff, Paula l., Crime Prevention for Houses of Worship, 2nd edition, ASIS International, ISBN 978-1-934904-74-9.
    Closed-circuit Video (CCV)/Video Surveillance System (VSS)
    • ASIS Houses of Worship Committee, Recommended Best Practices for Securing Houses of Worship Around the World, 2017, https://www.asisonline.org/globalassets/get-involved/councils/documents/best-practices-securing-houses-of-worship.pdf
    • ASIS International, Protection of Assets: Physical Security, Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2012.
    • DHS, Buildings and Infrastructure Protection Series: Primer to Design Safe School Projects in Case of Terrorist Attacks and School Shootings (FEMA-428/BIPS-07), January 2012, https://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/st/bips07_428_schools.pdf.
    • DHS, CCTV Technology Handbook, July 2013, https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/CCTV-Tech-HBK_0713-508.pdf.
    • Garcia, Mary Lynn, The Design and Evaluation of Physical Protection Systems, 2nd edition, Burlington, MA: Elsevier, 2008.
    • Garcia, Mary Lynn, Vulnerability Assessment of Physical Protection Systems, Burlington, MA: Elsevier, 2006.
    • Hestermann, Jennifer, Soft Target Hardening: Protecting People From Attack, 2nd edition, New York: Routledge, 2018.
    • Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, A Comprehensive Report on School Safety Technology, prepared for DOJ NIJ, October 2016, https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/grants/250274.pdf.
    • Patterson, David G., Implementing Physical Protection Systems: A Practical Guide, Alexandria, VA: ASIS International, 2013.

       

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