Softest Target: Security Planning for Houses of Worship   [open pdf - 10MB]

From the Thesis Abstract: "Defending houses of worship has become an ever-increasing need in homeland security. The rise of threats against faith-based organizations is growing, and the unique nature of sanctuaries makes them an ever-increasing soft target. What security help can assist houses of worship, and how can homeland security experts advise faith-based organizations? This thesis employs an appreciative inquiry approach to define the security problem that houses of worship face in specific threats and hurdles unique to them. Chapters review available resources at the government level, in the commercial space, and by faith-based organizations themselves. The material was then synthesized by developing an emergency operations plan for one house of worship: Northminster Presbyterian Church in Tucson, Arizona. This thesis suggests that overcoming the hurdles to security strategies within a house of worship is much more nuanced than previously believed, and the construction of a security plan for any house of worship is far more difficult than previously understood. Rather than seeking a one-size-fits-all or a packaged solution, houses of worship would best be served by engaging in a local effort to analyze security challenges and solutions. Little empirical study treats how houses of worship use, acquire, and find value in protection strategies on their campuses, and this thesis starts the conversation into this rarely discussed space."

Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Naval Postgraduate School, Dudley Knox Library: https://calhoun.nps.edu/
Media Type:
Cohort NCR1803/1804
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