Church safety class is Feb. 15

Staff Report

NEWBERRY — The church safety class scheduled for January 29 is completely full. Sheriff Lee Foster said more than 100 people already registered for the training. Only those already registered for the class should attend.

However, because there is a continued demand for this training, another session will be offered on Tuesday, February 15, at 6 p.m. and registration is now open for this session.

Based upon the events of Texas and other incidents in churches across the nation, Foster said that they have had an overwhelming demand for another presentation of their one of a kind training, “Safety in the Sanctuary.” As an added bonus to this session, Thrivent will be signing on as a corporate sponsor and will offer drinks and snacks for the training.

Foster said that this cutting edge, relevant presentation gives church leaders the information they need to begin discussions and preparations for a comprehensive church safety plan.

“We have been amazed at the overwhelming response to this program,” said Foster. “The input has been so positive from our citizens showing us that this information is both relative and useful for today’s society.”

He added that in light as several shooting incidents, including another church shooting that left one dead and several more injured, the Sheriff’s Office felt it was time to again offer this training to help churches prevent and prepare for such incidents.

The program gained national notoriety when it was featured in the National Institute of Justice’s law enforcement publication TECH BEAT. Foster said that after the article was published the Newberry County Sheriff’s Office received calls from law enforcement and public safety officials from across the nation asking about the program and how they could adapt it for their citizens. Calls were received from New York, California, Oregon, Washington, Iowa, Missouri, Florida, Wisconsin and several other states seeking information on the program.

“Church safety is becoming a major concern for church leaders and the congregations they serve. In response to that concern the Newberry County Sheriff’s Office has created a training presentation called Safety in the Sanctuary, said Foster.

He added that the training has had an overwhelming turn out and extremely positive response from attendees. The training is designed to impress upon church leaders the necessity to plan for emergencies in the church environment.

“We are certain that this topic is both real and relevant to the citizens of Newberry County,” Foster said. “We are pleased to be partners with the citizens in protecting their homes and their places of worship.”

If you would like to attend the training on Feb. 15 contact the Newberry County Sheriff’s Office at (803) 321-2211 or email to reserve your seat for this training.

Staff Report