Clayton Police Help Businesses, Church Groups Create Emergency Action Plans

CLAYTON – People often ask themselves, “What would I do in an emergency?” It is hard to know the answer to that question if you have never faced danger. It’s even more difficult in the context of a business, church, school, or community organization. Officer Neal Johnson is the Community Policing Officer at Clayton Police Department, and preparing people for emergency situations is his job.

“My main priority is crime prevention, which starts with educating the public,” said Officer Johnson.

Community Policing Officer may be an unfamiliar term to some; however, the goal of the position is simple. Officer Johnson’s duty is to connect and engage with the community and ensure the people of Clayton feel safe and well-protected.

“Feeling well-protected is partially an inside job,” said Officer Johnson. “When citizens know how to handle an emergency or potentially violent situation at home, at work or elsewhere, our communities are safer.”

Officer Johnson offers free security audits and active assailant training to local businesses and church groups. Programs are tailored to fit a group’s specific needs, strengths, and weaknesses. During a security audit or active assailant training, Officer Johnson professionally evaluates the business or organization to identify potential advantages and risks and assemble a plan that is easy to understand and execute.

“You have the option to make your security plan as complex or simple as you desire,” said Officer Johnson. “It is my goal to provide you with the knowledge and tools specific to your situation, environment, and concerns.”

Programs typically consist of a presentation, a walkthrough of basic strategies and tactics, and a Q & A session. Officer Johnson focuses on teaching the public how to handle potentially dangerous situations before, during, and after they occur.

For example, Officer Johnson educates groups on the importance of Avoid-Deny-Defend, a three-step strategy he believes everyone should understand. Groups can also engage in mock training exercises with law enforcement, emergency medical services, and the fire department.

These programs are free and open to the public. Classes are taught on-site at the business, church schools, or community group’s location to make the classes as relevant as possible.

For more information and to set up a program for a local business, church, school or community organization, please email Officer Johnson at njohnson@townofclaytonnc.org.

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