As we continue with some posts on the elements of church safety, it should be clear that your church building plays a role in any safety and security plan. But simply following the International Building Code with your church design isn’t enough.
Your church building can only go so far in protecting people. You need more. For example, you need security teams. You need trained staff and volunteers who know what to do when security issues arise, or parents raise church safety questions about their children’s health and safety. You also need a comprehensive plan.
How Many Churches Have an Active Church Safety and Security Ministry?
It probably seems like a no-brainer that a church should have a thorough and well-documented plan for church safety and security, but not that many do. Here are some statistics.
According to data published by SurveyUSA in 2019, it turns out that only one in four churches today has an active security ministry. That’s just 25%. Yet 86% of regular church attendees feel it’s important that their church leaders and volunteers are professionally trained to prepare for an active threat. Furthermore, 73% of these faithful people say that their place of worship is completely unprepared to handle an active security threat.
Why Does This Matter?
Here’s another surprising statistic. 45% of people would go to worship services more often if they knew church safety and security systems were in place. This means almost half of the people in your community would be more likely to show up at your church building if they could be confident that they would be safe and secure while they are there. That’s a lot of people that could be joining you on Sunday mornings, if you invest in making church safety a priority.
How Can You Improve the Church Safety Ministry in Your Church Building?
Here’s one last statistical finding that provides some hope for church leaders who wonder about the costs involved in setting up a church safety and security ministry in your church building. The good news is that 63% of survey respondents would be willing to donate to help cover the costs associated with putting a security program in place. This means that almost two-thirds of the people worshipping with you each Sunday are likely willing to make an investment in keeping your church building, and everyone in it, safe and secure.
We encourage church leaders to have conversations about church safety and security. When you make it a priority, you are more likely to get that financial assistance. Once you have a comprehensive plan in place, word will spread in the community and more people are likely to feel comfortable coming to your church building on Sunday mornings.
So, how do you go about putting together an effective church safety and security team? We’re so glad you asked! We will cover that in our next article on this topic. Meanwhile, we suggest you check out our upcoming free i3 webinars, where not only do we address church safety issues like this, but also provide other important information about church building and design issues.