4/21/2009 12:00 AM
Too often, we read of tragic violence that could have been prevented if only the signals had been recognized and appropriate resources engaged.
The National Emergency Response and Rescue Training Center (NERRTC) will conduct an intensive Threat and Assessment course in Urbana, Ill., on April 21-23 for Illinois select personnel.
The State of Illinois recently enacted a broad plan designed to train trainers for an Illinois Higher Education Threat Assessment Team program. The program is designed to anticipate and mitigate the threat of violence in its higher educational institutions. The seminar will provide new insights, answers and initiatives for school trainers to carry to every college and university in the state.
Illinois has been a national leader in attempting to focus on school safety, recognizing that it is extremely important for colleges and universities to prevent violence on campus.
“Today, more than ever, schools have an obligation to be prepared to do all they can to prevent violence through a focus on the potentially violent person,” said Dr. Sherdeana Owens, Education Project Administrator at NERRTC. “This should be done without decreasing the emphasis on addressing violence when it occurs while mitigating the impact of sudden violence on its students, parents, faculty and staff. Illinois is leading the way and is determined to replace hindsight and regret with foresight and sensitive intervention.”
NERRTC is a division of Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) and a founding member of the National Domestic Preparedness Consortium. The center was created by Congress following the 1995 bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. NERRTC has designed, developed and delivered emergency planning, training and exercises for government entities, private industry, educational institutions and first responders across the nation and internationally.
“It’s not enough to train our responders,” said NERRTC Director Harrison Lobdell. “Schools and businesses are increasingly the focal point for catastrophic violence. NERRTC has extended its offerings into violence-prevention programs and threat-management workshops, as well as emergency operations planning, technical assistance and exercises for educational organizations and corporations nationwide.”