Security is everyone’s business, says Yossi Levy, a security specialist and CEO of Pivot Security. He lives in Israel where security is a mindset that all citizens share. “Given that we’re in a tough neighborhood, we’ve learned to be aware of our security from a very young age.” Unfortunately, Americans are realizing that they too need to adopt a different relationship to “security.”
A step up from the individual are security professionals. In Israel, security personnel are treated as professionals and paid accordingly. Effective physical security requires specific and ongoing training to ensure that security guards operate at a consistent and effective level. Security staff should be managed, overseen and audited. An unarmed, trained security guard can be a very efficient, effective and valuable member of an organization.
School security guards must undergo constant training, know how to read body language and identify abnormal behavior, and be proficient in questioning methods. This enables security professionals to identify and address potential threats without bias.
Bus drivers should have similar training. They are in fact the first people to greet children every day. They can tell if someone is upset or angry or if they are properly dressed for the weather. For example, why is a child wearing a coat to school in the summer or, why are they sweating when it's cold outside? These scenarios should be addressed. Of course, this does not mean that someone is a potential threat, but bus drivers can at least pass the information along to a school official.
Levy concludes that Americans must change how they respond to security issues by creating effective, proactive security systems and processes that are implemented routinely. Emphasis must be placed on the prevention of shootings and not “active shooter” drills which are an after-the-fact measure. Let’s learn to prevent incidents outside of the school and keep threats out of the school building.