Team of firefighters by firetruck on accident location.

Avoiding Violence – How to recognize it before it happens!

Recognizing Pre-Incident Indicators to Violence could save your life!

“The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence” is a nonfiction, self-help book written by Gavin de Becker. The book demonstrates how every individual should learn to trust the inherent “gift” of their gut instinct or intuition. By learning to recognize various warning signs and precursors to violence, it becomes possible to avoid violence.

The Gift of Fear spent four months on The New York Times Bestseller List and was a #1 National Bestseller. It has been published in 14 languages. The book was endorsed by a wide variety of celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey. Oprah dedicated an hour-long show on the books 10th anniversary.

The book explores various settings where violence may be found—the workplace, the home, the school, dating—and describes what de Becker calls pre-incident indicators (PINS). When properly identified, these PINS can help violence be avoided. When violence is unavoidable it can usually be predicted and better understood.

The Pre-Incident Indicators include:

Forced Teaming.  This is when a person implies that they have something in common with their chosen victim. For instance, acting as if they have a shared predicament when that isn’t really true. Speaking in “we” terms is a mark of this, i.e. “We don’t need to talk outside… Let’s go in.”

 

Charm and Niceness.  This is being polite and friendly to a chosen victim in order to manipulate him or her by disarming their mistrust.

 

Too many details.   If a person is lying they will add excessive details to make themselves sound more credible to their chosen victim.

 

Typecasting.   An insult is used to get a chosen victim who would otherwise ignore one to engage in conversation to counteract the insult. For example: “Oh, I bet you’re too stuck-up to talk to a guy like me.” The tendency is for the chosen victim to want to prove the insult untrue.

 

Loan Sharking.   Giving unsolicited help to the chosen victim and anticipating they’ll feel obliged to extend some reciprocal openness in return.

 

The Unsolicited Promise.   A promise to do (or not do) something when no such promise is asked for; this usually means that such a promise will be broken. For example: an unsolicited, “I promise I’ll leave you alone after this,” usually means the chosen victim will not be left alone. Similarly, an unsolicited “I promise I won’t hurt you” usually means the person intends to hurt their chosen victim.

 

Discounting the Word “No”.  Refusing to accept rejection; not recognizing the word “NO”.

The book, “The Gift of Fear” is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child before they go off to college or move out on their own. This book will change their lives in understanding their own “Intuition”, instinct or “Gift of Fear”.

Preventing Work Place Violence

Preventing Workplace Violence:

Shaffer Security Group (SSG) will work with your Legal Department, Human Resources, Security and C-level executives to develop a strategic plan to recognize & prevent Workplace Violence.

SSG has worked with numerous firms developing their Security Plan.  These plans emphasize how to recognize and prevent workplace violence.   We have worked with Fortune 100’s, Non-Government Organizations, Charitable Groups, Churches, Schools and Manufactures.  Shaffer Security Group will teach you to recognize “Pre-Incident Indicators” and help you develop a portal to which your employees can report suspicious and potentially dangerous behavior.  Our experts know the security of your firm is based on teamwork.  We not only work with your Human Resources (HR), Legal Team, Chief Security Officer & your C-level executives; but we also work with your employees to develop and communicate a Security Plan that meets your firm’s specific needs.

Statistics Show Increase in Fatal Workplace Violence:

The most common indicator for Workplace Violence is “Domestic Abuse” at home. Does you firm have an established, effective means by which your employees can report domestic abuse?  Is your reception aware of these potential threats?  Do you have intervention capable employees to step in and help diffuse conflicts or violence? What are your legal requirements to protect your employees?

http://www.krgv.com/story/35596413/stats-show-increase-in-fatal-workplace-shootings

Contact Shaffer Security Group for your Risk & Threat Assessment and let us develop a strategic security plan utilizing security, intelligence & training solutions to prevent workplace violence.

TERRORISM ON THE RISE

Terrorism is on the rise as shown in the 2016 report, Investigative Project on Terrorism.  This study focused on trends in radical Islamic terrorism. The data was frightening as it showed three very important trends:

  1. Fatalities from terrorist attacks has increased 744 percent from 2007-2011 to 2014-2015.
  2. The average annual fatalities has increased from roughly 3,200 deaths per year to approximately 27,000 deaths per year.
  3. The number of terrorist attacks during that time has increased by roughly 500 percent.

As a result of these findings, it leads us to ask, what is your plan? At home, the Office, your school? SSG can help you develop a Security Plan designed specifically for your needs. You must to have a PLAN!  We can train you and your staff to identify pre-incident indicators and to respond effectively during high-stress, violent encounters.   We will help you develop a strategic plan using security, intelligence & training solutions to make your business and your life safer.

#activeshooterresponse #activeshooter #counterterrorismtraining#tacticaltraining #tacticalfirearms #whatisyourplan #stayinthefight#trainhard #situationalawareness #personalprotection

5 Steps to Develop your Active Shooter Response Plan

Developing Your Active Shooter Response Plan:

Does your firm have an Active Shooter Response Plan?  Has your plan been communicated to your employees?  Do you routinely have Active Shooter Response Drills?

As you are aware, the national conversation and the most recent statistics show that violence in the workplace is becoming more common.  According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 5% of all businesses experience an instance of workplace violence each year. For larger organizations with over 1,000 employees, this rate is increased tenfold to 50 percent.  A 2014 report from the FBI found active shooter incidents in the U.S. now occur on an average of once a month. Of these incidents, almost half (45.6 percent) occurred at a business while nearly a quarter (24.4 percent) occurred at schools and institutions of higher learning.

Although active threats can vary from incident to incident, the common threads found throughout can be woven together to create an effective and successful safety program. The following are bullet-points from lessons learned gleaned from research & years of experience fighting terrorism both on and off the battlefield.  I help businesses develop tools for building a solid foundation for a safety-minded workplace.  Then, I teach them how to respond when violence visits.

Mindset to Clear the First Hurdle:

More often than not, active threat training is the elephant in the room. Everyone has seen or heard of incidents, but are reluctant to take the steps toward mitigation. The reasons may vary.  From believing it’ll make employees more fearful than empowered; to worrying the training might not be “right” for the team. However, looking the other way is not a solution to any problem, much less one with deadly consequences.

Statistics show an active shooter incident is more of an ‘when‘ than an ‘if‘.  Unfortunately, violence doesn’t discriminate on where it can take place.  It could happen at your headquarters, warehouse or storefront.  All aspects of your business should be involved in preventative measures.

Breaking through the barrier of apprehension begins “One Team, One Goal” approach.  Leadership should evaluate the type of training that fits their organization’s culture.  Supervisors should communicate the importance of such training to employees, and clearly explain how the training will be implemented.

Flexible Response Plans:

Violence is seldom a cookie cutter affair, and a “one size fits all” response is an ineffective solution. Conversely, having too many threat-specific responses can be confusing, if not outright dangerous.  While different threats do warrant varying responses, a series of “stovepipe” procedures can cripple an organization during a high stress scenario.

All active threat response plans should be built upon the same principles.  Even if the minute details are lost in the heat of the moment, team members can still make informed decisions to ensure their safety.  Streamlining processes encourages a quick implementation and retention of information.  Knowledge increases confidence, confidence increases decisiveness, and it is decisive action in a critical incident that saves lives.

Proactive Response Plans:

As a result of the number of Active Shooter Events (ASE), there is a movement for companies to have a Plan of Action.  For better or worse, increased exposure of violence in the workplace means it an issue thrust into the forefront.  A strategy based on “it won’t happen to me” is a folly that can irreparably destroy a brand.

An effective response plan doesn’t begin when the incident occurs, but as soon as training can be conducted. Empowering employees with tools on how to identify and communicate possible high-risk indicators such as signs of growing anger, depression or erratic behavior can be just as, if not more effective, as decisive action during an active threat.

Clear Communication Plans:

A cohesive “one-team” mindset supported by a response plan based on fundamentals cannot take place without clear communication before, during, and after a critical incident.  The language plays a critical role in an active threat response program and can dictate the program’s success or failure. Such language should be consistent with current policies and procedures so the program is both effective and legally defensible.

Each company will need to tailor its active threat response plan to fit its culture and workplace environment. Thankfully, a simple concept already exists so organizations may build a clear and coherent plan: “Run, Hide, Fight.”

Customer Service:

Communication during a critical incident is not limited to employees.  It extends to customer interaction as well. How a company communicates around and with customers during an active threat incident can play a vital role in minimizing the harm as a result of panic.

Every active threat mitigation plan should include an emergency communication strategy which may contain one or two common components:

  • First is the use of a code like “Code Adam”.  This will notify employees to a specific issue, while customers and vendors remain unaware of any possible threat.
  • The second option is to use “plain English”.  This will notify everyone quickly which improves situational awareness.  For example, instead of using “Code Red” for an active shooter incident, the alert would announce there is an active shooter situation in progress.  This will allow employees, customers and vendors to take decisive action.

Every active threat situation will unfold differently.  External factors such as the weather, type of environment, and other variables can present unpredictable outcomes. By being proactive, such as implementing sound training strategies, companies can be prepared for and respond to an active threat. Through the empowerment of its most valuable assets – its people – companies can mitigate risks.   Thereby, protecting the safety of its employees, customers, and community.

SSG specializes in designing & implementing Active Shooter Response plans for your business, school, or firm.  We work with your CSO, Legal, HR and Supervisors to develop a portal to report pre-incident indicators.  We help develop and train your Crisis Management Team; and we will train your entire staff in how to identify threats and how to respond in the event of an armed assault.

Contact Shaffer Security Group for your Active Shooter Response training today.

http://www.securitymagazine.com/articles/88045-keys-to-building-a-successful-active-threat-plan

TSA Rules Recap: Air Travel with Firearms

Air Travel with Firearms:

Shaffer Security Group (SSG) keeping you informed.  Provided below is the latest information, rules and regulations on the TSA’s requirements to fly with a firearm in your checked luggage.  The information provided will help make it easier for both you and the ticket agent behind the counter. Good Luck!

https://www.nrahlf.org/articles/2017/5/20/tsa-rules-recap-air-travel-with-firearms/#.WSYFiU_Ws4Y.twitter

Contact Shaffer Security Group for all your Risk Management, Security Consulting, and Firearms Training solutions.

Social Media:

Be sure to follow us on Twitter at: @ShafferGroup; on FaceBook at: @Shaffer.Sec.Group; and on Instagram at: Shaffer Security Group.

Staying Healthy this Summer Travel Season

The Summer Travel Season is upon us!  Are you planning on traveling overseas this summer?  If so, there are a few things you need to consider. During your pre-planning, its easy to think, “I’ll just look online or hop on over to the Doc-in-a-Box and they’ll tell me everything I need to know to keep from getting sick.”

That’s not always the case!

A study published last week in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that travel clinics missed giving the measles vaccine to about half of eligible travelers.  For nearly a third of the missed cases, doctors or nurses simply didn’t offer the vaccine, even though measles is a problem in many parts of the world, including Western Europe and Mexico.  A traveler can be very easily exposed to measles around the world. The risk is very real.

With international trave it’s best to figure out what you need before you go to the clinic or your doctor and tell them exactly what it is you do need!

Here are just two tips to help you stay healthy while traveling:

1. Take the Pepto! 

The most common malady while traveling overseas you’re most likely to suffer is:  FOOD POISONING.  About a 25% of travelers will get gastrointestinal ‘distress’ within the first two weeks of an international trip.  Your best defense against this is both cheap and safe – Pepto Bismol.

Back in 1987, a study found that two tablets of Pepto Bismol tablets, taken four times a day, cut the risk of traveler’s diarrhea by more than 60 percent. The pills dropped the risk from 40 percent to only 14 percent.

If you do get sick, the pink pills may come in handy as the active ingredient, Bismuth Subsalicylate, can shorten the duration of a bout of diarrhea, and is a good alternative to antibiotics.

2. Remember the Routine Vaccines.

There’s a good chance you might need a vaccine prior to your travels – even if you’re just headed for a quick trip to Europe or the U.K.

The CDC recommends that all international travelers be up to date on routine vaccines, no matter the destination. Routine immunizations are the ones we get as children. The list is long. It includes about a dozen vaccines, everything from the pneumonia and whooping cough vaccines to those for Hepatitis A and B.  When you add onto this list any shots recommended for your specific destination, the list of possible vaccines can get complicated.

Plus, the CDC’s recommendations often get updated. Just a few weeks ago, the agency officially started recommending the cholera vaccine for travelers headed to places with ongoing outbreaks. And last month, they warned of a potential yellow vaccine shortage.

To make sure your clinician gets the list right for your specific trip, we recommend using the CDC’s new travel app, called Trav Well.

Users type their destination and time of travel into the app, and it tells them what they need to do to prepare.

So, travel safe this summer season and please do not hesitate to contact SHAFFER SECURITY GROUP if you have any questions about safety and security concerns for your summer travel plans.

 

“The Man in the Arena”

One hundred and five years ago, Theodore Roosevelt gave what would become one of the most widely quoted speeches of his career – “The Man in the Arena”. The former president—who left office in 1909—had spent a year hunting in Central Africa before embarking on a tour of Northern Africa and Europe in 1910, attending events and giving speeches in Cairo, Berlin, Naples, and Oxford, among others. He stopped in Paris on April 23, and, at 3 p.m. at the Sorbonne, before a crowd that included “ministers in court dress, army and navy officers in full uniform, nine hundred students, and an audience of two thousand ticket holders,” Roosevelt delivered a speech called “Citizenship in a Republic,” which, among some, would come to be known as “The Man in the Arena.”

In addition to speaking about his own family history, war, and the responsibilities of citizenship; Roosevelt railed against cynics who looked down at men who were trying to make the world a better place. “The poorest way to face life is to face it with a sneer,” he said. “A cynical habit of thought and speech, a readiness to criticize work which the critic himself never tries to perform, an intellectual aloofness which will not accept contact with life’s realities—all these are marks, not … of superiority but of weakness.” Then he delivered an inspirational and impassioned message that drew huge applause:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

The speech was a wild success.  “Citizenship in a Republic” ran in the Journal des Debats as a Sunday supplement and sent to the teachers of France by Le Temps. The speech was printed by Librairie Hachette on Japanese vellum, and was turned into into a pocket book that sold 5000 copies in five days.  The “Man in the Arena” speech was was translated across Europe almost instantaneously.  Roosevelt himself was surprised at its success!

President Roosevelt might be even more surprised to learn that the most famous section of his speech still resonates and inspires, even today.  “Man in the Arena” was quoted by President Nixon in his resignation speech. It was used by Nelson Mandela prior to the 1995 Rugby World Cup where South Africa defeated the favored All Blacks of New Zealand.  Washington Nationals player Mark DeRosa would read it to himself before big games, to include Game 4 of the National League Division Series in 2012.  DeRosa read it aloud to his teammates. “That’s a quote I’ve always gone back to,” he told the Washington Post. “I go to that a lot, I really do. I’ve done it since college. I like it because people think they know, but they have no idea what we’re thinking from pitch to pitch. With our backs against the wall I wanted to say something that brought us together, a little band of brothers. Go out and fight. See what happens. I felt it was fitting. It fires me up when I read it.” The team was victorious.

The speech has its cultural touchstones, too: One wonders what Teddy would have made of his words being tattooed on Miley Cyrus and used in a Cadillac commercial?

The partners of SSG have all been in the arena, have suffered greatly, and achieved mightily.  We hold close to our hearts these words of Teddy Roosevelt.  Stay in the Fight!

SITUATIONAL AWARENESS

SITUATIONAL AWARENESS

One of the most often overlooked, yet critical aspects of Personal Security is, Situational Awareness:

“Check Your Six”, “Head on a Swivel”, “Be aware of your surroundings”.  You have probably heard all of these before, but what do they mean?

As the names implies, “Situational Awareness” is simply knowing what’s going on around you. It sounds easy in principle, but in reality requires much practice.  This skill is ingrained in soldiers, law enforcement officers, and yes, government-trained operatives!  At SSG, we understand how important a skill it is for civilians as well. Ultimately, being aware of a threat even seconds before everyone else, can keep you and your loved ones safe.

Situational Awareness is a skill that can and should be developed for reasons outside of personal defense and safety. Situational awareness is really just another word for mindfulness. Developing mine has allowed me to survive multiple overseas operations in very high-threat environments.  This same ‘mindfulness’ has also allowed me to be more cognizant of what’s going on around me in my daily activities, which in turn has helped me make better decisions in all aspects of my life.

Our Situational Awareness Courses Include:

  • Defining Situational Awareness Detractors.
  • How to use your “Gift of Fear”.
  • What is the OODA Loop & How Can It Be Reset?
  • Travel Security & Intelligence.
  • Using Improvised Weapons.
  • Mobile Phone Apps that can save your life.
  • Actions during an Active Shooter Event (ASE).

SSG personnel have spent years in the field developing their Situational Awareness. This skill set is what has kept the SSG partners alive in hostile, high-threat corners of the globe.  Let SSG help develop in you this important skill. Most notably, the focus is primarily on developing your situational awareness to prevent or survive a violent attack.  However, these same principles will also help hone your powers of observation in all areas of your life.

Finally, here are just a couple of links to provide you a list of mobile phone applications that you can download and start using today.  Stay Safe!

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/10-apps-save-life-case-emergency-article-1.2438105

http://coolmaterial.com/tech/8-apps-that-could-save-your-life/

Contact Shaffer Security Group for your Situational Awareness training course.

Knife Fighting – a lost art form.

KNIFE FIGHTING – A Lost Skill-Set

Shaffer Security Group Welcomes JOHN HOOPER to our Training Team:

John Hooper is an ‘expert’ knife fighter and Empty Hand Combative Instructor.

Shaffer Security Group (SSG) has invited John to be a part of our “Training Cadre” for both our Military/Police and Civilian Tactical Courses.  John is an outstanding instructor and you will be amazed at his knife fighting techniques, skills, and knowledge.

John has been studying martial arts since 1997 and has been actively teaching since 2008.  He has trained in and taught several martial arts systems, including Old School Jeet Kune Do, Boxing, Muay Thai, Wing Chun Kung Fu, Jiu-Jitsu, WW2 Era Combatives, and several Filipino systems including Pekiti Tirsia Kali and the Inosanto/Lacoste Blend.

John is the co-founder of the “Raptor System” of Close Quarters Combat, which has been distilled from over four decades of combined experience in study, training, and fighting in the martial arts.  The system is adaptive in nature and is equally effective in any range with empty hand combat or weaponry.  Rooted in the proven fundamental principles of warfare, it is simple and efficient and can be utilized by anyone including Military, LEO, or civilian.
Courses are available with John for both Groups & Individuals.  Contact SSG today for more details or to have John put on a demonstration of his skill-set.