4 Tips to Help Secure Your Church Facilities During Extended Vacancy
Have you checked on your property since safer-at-home orders were put in place? While your ministry leadership and community engage in social distancing, there are some steps you can take to help ensure the security of your church’s property and facilities.
Out of sight - out of mind. Making valuable equipment and property less visible or moving them to a secure location can make your church less of a target for burglars. If possible, move things like computers, laptops, keyboards, musical instruments, and Audio-Visual equipment out of the line-of-site from any exterior windows and doors. Also, place security warnings like video camera announcements and security system notifications on exterior windows and doors to help further deter potential threats. If possible, move your most valuable equipment to secure locations that could be closely monitored.
Locking Doors and Windows
Don’t make it easy for anyone to gain access to your building. Lock all first and second floor exterior windows and doors of the facility. Also, secure all internal doors to ensure limited access should an intruder get inside. Close all blinds and shades to help secure the contents of the building and to make your church a less attractive target.
Turning Off Water
Don’t spring a leak while you’re away. Turn off the water access to the building during this time of social distancing. This will help ensure no leaks start or further impact the structure of your building. Maintain proper temperatures within the building to prevent frozen pipes. Any actions taken to keep your facility and community safe is an act of faithful stewardship of the lives and resources God has placed under your care.
Drive-bys and Check Ups
Every day your facility is vacant is a day your property and facility could be compromised. Contact your local police department or EMS company. Notify the authorities of the vacancy and ask if your church could be added to their route for daily check-ins. Offering your church parking lot for EMS and Police vehicles to park while on duty can provide an extra layer of activity and security to your church. Their presence - or the threat of their presence - could serve as a deterrent to individuals seeking to do harm. If possible, create a schedule for trusted church leadership to conduct an exterior walk-through, making note of any apparent attempted entry. Report any suspicious activity to the local authorities.
We are in unsure times, but you can secure your church’s property. You can also take this time to review your property and casualty insurance package. If you would like help reviewing your policy or would like to discuss how UMIP can help protect your property, visitwww.uminsure.org and request a quote or contact UMIP@suracy.com or 866-203-0777.