In the wake of the recent violent incidents on elementary, high school and college campuses, preparedness on how to defuse, negotiate or handle these situations is vital for the overall safety of a community and the parties involved in crisis events.
Three key officials from the Lackawanna County 911 Center attended a May seminar at Penn State University, main campus, entitled “School Safety,” to learn the latest methods for handling difficult community incidents.
David Hahn, Lackawanna County’s Director of Emergency Services; Rich Barbolish, the County’s Emergency Management Services Deputy Director; and Al Kearney, 911 Staff Services Manager, participated in the program that featured speakers from the United States Homeland Security Department, FBI, Pennsylvania State Police, the State’s Homeland Security Office, Penn State’s Public Safety Department, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency, and several clinical, psychological and behavioral specialists.
The topics covered were: school safety, hazard planning tool kit, psychology of a violent offender, response to an active shooter, risk and vulnerability assessment, pre-incident collaboration and cooperation, and suspicious activity reporting. Actual examples of incidents were also reviewed at the seminar.