National Security Service (NSS) is stepping up to help church congregations protect themselves against violent crimes after the recent devastating massacre of church parishioners at a quiet, small-town church in rural Texas. NSS is training hundreds of its officers nationwide in tactics to help protect churches from mass shootings and other acts of violence.
Traditionally, places of worship have been safe havens for religious gatherings, but churches have become vulnerable to violent crimes including arson, bomb threats, domestic violence, and mass shootings. "We've had a real increase in calls from congregations to hire security guards since that sickening church massacre in Texas," says Edward Stevens, CEO of National Security Service. "It's sad, but violence against churches is the new reality."
The increase in annual active shooter incidents in the United States is disturbing. According to research findings from a study conducted by the FBI in 2014, 160 active shooter incidents occurred between 2000 and 2013. On average, 11.4 incidents happened yearly with an increasing trend from 2000 to 2013. With these shocking statistics, churches need to put security services on their agendas.
Mosques, temples, and other places of worship that have historically been targets for threats and acts of violence have long since recognized the need for protection. But the targets for violent crimes are changing and many megachurches and houses of worship in rural communities are hiring security officers. Church Security Guards are a visible deterrent to would-be criminals who may think twice before committing a crime.
"Providing security for churches has its own unique challenges,"
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