FLINT TWP. — As promised last month, township police will soon offer classes to teach people in places of worship how to improve security.
In the aftermath of a mass shooting at a church in Texas and violence at other churches nationwide, security classes are being offered for a fee by the Michigan State Police. But interest is so high that those classes fill up quickly, so the township police department decided to step up.
Two sessions of “Response to Violent Intruders in Places of Worship” will be offered for free to members of places of worship in Flint Township, said Police Chief George Sippert. They are set to be held from 6-8 p.m. on Jan. 11 and 25 in the community room at the police station, 5200 Norko Drive.
Pre-registration is required by calling 810-600-3270. Enrollment will be limited to 45 people per session and a limit of four people from each congregation Chief Sippert said.
Classes will be taught by police department members who are certified ALICE instructors. ALICE is a training technique that stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter and Evacuate, Chief Sippert said. The technique has been modified to apply to security issues at houses of worship.
“Our instructor-led class provides preparation and a plan for individuals and organizations on how to more proactive handle the threat of an aggressive intruder or active shooter event,” Chief Sippert said. “Whether it is an attack by an individual intruder or by a group intent on conveying a political message through violence, ALICE Training option-based tactics have become the accepted response versus the traditional ‘lockdown only’ approach.”
Chief Sippert said he expects the two classes to fill up quickly. If need be, more sessions may be scheduled later or perhaps an option set up to have an instructor visit a place of worship to offer the training on site.
No weapons will be allowed in the classes.