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In the Case of an Emergency

Does your church have an Emergency Disaster Plan? The Episcopal Diocese of San Diego wants your congregation to update and file its Emergency Disaster Plan with the Diocese.

Our faith demands that we open ourselves to the world and share our faith, love, and commitment to Jesus Christ with everyone without judgment. This call to courageous love can make it difficult when it comes to emergency situations; especially when firearms are involved.

In her May 17th statement on gun violence, Bishop Susan Brown Snook said, “As followers of Jesus, we also know that prayer—while critically needed—is not enough on its own. We who do our best to follow Jesus’s command to love our neighbor as we love ourselves, and who recognize that Jesus said that the smallest and weakest among us should be our highest priority, should work and advocate to protect the vulnerable.” 

Jeff Green, EDSD Operations and Safety Manager, is here to help you protect the vulnerable in a time of crisis. Having led the diocesan initiatives for church safety and security since 2016, Green is ready to aid your community in developing a comprehensive, personalized emergency disaster plan.

The 2015 Diocesan Convention resolved that all churches and organizations, throughout EDSD, need to file a copy of their updated disaster plans with the diocese. At that time, disaster plans focused on natural disasters–earthquakes, tsunamis, wildfires, and landslides. But, after the heart-wrenching mass shooting at the Tree of Life Congregation synagogue in 2018, the Diocese shifted its emphasis toward church security. Issues such as violence in church and the possibility of active shooters became paramount. 

In response to this shift, Jeff Green provides church safety and security presentations and has curated an extensive archive of resources concerning church safety & security. These resources include a number of pre-packaged training programs to help create a church safety team. Your safety team can use these resources to learn valuable skills for verbal de-escalation of disruptive people, preparation for active shooter situations, and more. Find these resources at www.edsd.org/disaster.

EDSD can also help you with a Church Emergency Operations Plan smartphone app. You can see a sample of the smartphone app here: www.church911plan.com

Take advantage of security grants; for several years now, FEMA has offered a $150,000 Nonprofit Security Grant to churches which can help with the installation of security cameras, fencing, door locks, and more. For help in applying or to find out more contact Jeff Green at jgreen@edsd.org.

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