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Our AV-AMERICA team recently attended an event based on facing daily active threats hosted by the MPI Greater Orlando Chapter. Whether you are an event planner, supplier or partner, being prepared for event safety affects us all. With the uncertainty and challenges that come up in today’s fast-paced world, this educational forum helps us learn to keep up. The course was designed to address situational awareness by providing us with training on how to enhance our mental preparation, response ability and mitigation of environmental threats. There were over 60 MPI members in attendance and the room fell silent as Mark Herrera, former Department of Homeland Security Office and Protective Security Advisor, as well as Deputy Chief Eric Smith of Greater Orlando, elevated our awareness of threats we may face or already have faced.So, what can we do to be safe and execute great events that bring people together in a positive way? Below are a few key learnings:

 

  1. Programming your mind to see beyond normal conditioned expectations as it relates to potentially disruptive behaviour
  2. Identifying pre-assault indicators and non-verbal “behavioral posturing” prior to the threat
  3. Learning how to control your body’s physiological effects during confrontational situations in order to gain maximum control with a positive outcome
  4. Recognizing the importance of training employees/onsite staff on how to handle encounters professionally at our meetings and events, and at different venues
  5. If confronted with a shooter use these rules:  Run-Hide-Fight
    • Run:  attempt to escape, evacuate whether others agree or not, leave behind belongings, helps others escape if possible and call 911
    • Hide: lock or block the door, silence your cell phone, hide behind large objects and remain very quiet
    • Fight (as a last resort, and only if your life is in danger!)  Attempt to incapacitate the shooter, act with physical aggression, improvise weapons and commit to your actions

We sincerely hope these skills we learned are never needed, but it is a relief to know that public venues, planners and suppliers are being trained by people who are willing to take action to help save lives. We hope this information can help you.