There’s a lot going on in the world of physical risk and vulnerability; it’s nearly impossible to keep up with the latest news and developments. We’ll keep you informed with the best content to keep your organization safe and secure. Check out the top news and headlines from the past month.
From the NY Post: A thief yanked a sneaker off a woman’s foot on the staircase of a Brooklyn subway station this week, cops said Friday. The suspect approached the 47-year-old victim on the platform of the Grand Army Plaza 2 and 3 subway station just after 11 a.m. Wednesday and followed her up the stairs leading to the street, police said. There, he pulled her Nike running shoe, valued at $40, right off her foot, cops said. The woman and the suspect had no interaction before the bizarre theft, police said.
Our take: The pandemic has created difficult financial situations for many, and that means increasing theft and attacks, even bizarre ones like this. Although it’s unclear what the thief is planning to do with one sneaker, this sort of brazen attack is probably likely to become more common as tensions rise and financial pressure is felt.
From WREG: A Tennessee man was arrested February 8 after police say he shot at a McDonald’s employee at the drive-thru window on Oct. 11. According to court documents, the incident began when Charles Connors, 61, became upset about his food order. The employee asked him to wait, but he pulled up to the first window and ordered. Another employee, Terrika Means, talked to him at the next window. “... I was like, ‘I was just informed that you just disrespected …one of my young ladies and she’s just a young lady, she’s just a girl,” she said. Means said Connors demanded a refund. She issued him the refund but said he began cursing and yelling racial slurs. Means told him to have a good night and closed the window. He then pulled out a handgun, shot into the establishment, and fled the scene, police say.
Our take: Intentional violence toward fast food restaurant workers has been on rise in the last few years. This is likely to be an even bigger problem as fast food restaurants begin opening their dining rooms; if customers are attacking workers through the drive-through, they are likely to become even more abusive when dining rooms open up. Franchises will need to take steps to protect their workers this year if they want to keep their employees safe.
From The Daily Mail: The identity of the security guard who vandalized a million-dollar painting in Russia has been unmasked as a war hero decorated for military courage. Alexander Vasiliev, 63, used a pen to doodle on the eyes on the blank faces of figures in Anna Leporskaya's classic work Three Figures (1932-34), which was on display at Yekaterinburg's Boris Yeltsin Presidential Centre. It was his first day on the job. Restoration will cost an estimated $4,600. He admitted: 'I'm a fool, for what I've done.'
Our take: When you hire a guard force to protect your most valuable assets, it’s important to know who exactly you’re hiring. This guard was employed by a private force, and although he was a war hero, he was also influenced to doodle on the painting by a group of teenagers who were visiting the museum. Be sure to conduct a Guard Force Optimization Assessment to identify ways to improve security services with humans and automation while possibly reducing costs.
If you are in need of a Guard Force Optimization book a meeting with us today!
From Business Insider: Rabbi Daniel Bogard says his congregation in St. Louis is "a community focused on radical hospitality" — but on High Holy Days, "it looks like something out of a war zone.” That's because Central Reform Congregation hires a SWAT team to secure the site. The Department of Justice's most recent report said that Jewish and Muslim people saw some of the largest volumes of hate crimes in 2020, with 683 attacks against the former and 110 against the latter being voluntarily reported to the agency. In the wake of such attacks, Jewish leaders in St. Louis told Insider that institutions in their city have ramped up protections. Security costs can spike into the hundreds of thousands of dollars, and the grant programs from the federal government intended to bankroll such costs have been inadequate, they say, leaving congregations to foot the bill. "Every Jewish institution in America has ongoing security costs of at least $50,000, and they can near $150,000," Bogard estimated.
Our take: Hate crimes are increasing, and although the Department of Homeland Security is about to announce its 2022 nonprofit grants, those grants don’t always cover the full scope of necessary security upgrades. That said, it’s important for religious groups to be aware of federal grant programs and apply for them, even if they may need additional funding after the grants.
February Top Security Grants
Cybersecurity for Small Business Pilot Program: Cyber-attacks are a growing threat for small businesses and the U.S. economy. According to the FBI’s Internet Crime Report, the cost of cybercrimes reached $2.7 billion in 2020 alone. Small businesses are attractive targets because they have information that cybercriminals want, and they typically lack the security infrastructure of larger businesses. According to a recent SBA survey, 88% of small business owners felt their business was vulnerable to a cyber-attack. Yet many businesses can’t afford professional IT solutions, have limited time to devote to cybersecurity, or they don’t know where to begin. Grant closes: March 3, 2022
First Responders-Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Support Services Act Grant: The purpose of this program is to provide resources to first responders and members of other key community sectors at the state, tribal, and other government levels to train, carry and administer Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) approved drugs and devices for emergency reversal of known or suspected opioid overdose. Recipients will be expected to establish processes, protocols, and mechanisms for: (1) referral to appropriate treatment and recovery support services, and (2) safety around fentanyl, carfentanil, and other dangerous licit and illicit drugs. The population of focus are: 1) populations disproportionately impacted (relative to national averages) by opioid use as evidenced by high rates of opioid and other drug-related overdose, 2) primary treatment admissions, and 3) overdose rates. Applicant organizations must also demonstrate that their population of focus is underserved as demonstrated by a lack of accessibility to treatment providers, emergency medical services, and recovery and other psychosocial support services. Grant closes: April 5, 2022
Targeted Capacity Expansion: Special Projects: The purpose of the program is to implement targeted strategies for the provision of substance use disorder (SUD) or co-occurring disorder (COD) harm reduction, treatment, and/or recovery support services to support an under-resourced population or unmet need identified by the community. The applicant will identify the specific need or population it seeks to support through the provision of evidence-based SUD or COD harm reduction, treatment, and/or recovery support services. Diversity, equity, and inclusion must be integrated in the provision of services and activities throughout the project, for example, when conducting eligibility assessments, outreach, and engagement or developing policies.. Grant closes: April 4, 2022
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