life in and around NYC is insane

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

heightened security

How do you balance accessibility with security?  When you want to create a warm, welcoming community, but need to ensure that your community remains safe from those who would harm it?

When my kids and I first joined the Y/JCC, years ago, each of us had to get a picture taken, which was affixed to a membership card.   The fitness center at the Y is "members only", you have to present your membership card at the fitness center to gain admission.  But the rest of the building?  I think I may have had to flash my membership card at the receptionist as I walked into the building, but only if she remembered to ask me for my card.

Now, when I go to the JCC, I must present my membership card to the uniformed security guard sitting next to the receptionist. Non members must show ID and sign in.

It only makes sense.   The JCC houses a nursery school/daycare, a Jewish day school, all sorts of senior citizen programming, after school programs...

Several years ago, when our synagogue was vandalized, we had extensive discussions of how to make our building feel safe without turning it into an armed camp.  We decided on burglar alarms, surveillance cameras, and a buzzer system -- on weekdays, when the building is primarily used for nursery school and Hebrew school,  you must ring the doorbell and  be buzzed into the building.  On weekends,when we have a lot of programs going on,  the doors are open, and people are free to come and go.

And when I was there on Sunday, I found out we've added another level of security.

There was a gentleman in a suit sitting in the lobby, unobtrusively watching everyone who came into the building.  I recognized him as one of the security guards we hire during the High Holy Days, when the building is full to overflowing.

I hate feeling so vulnerable.


bookworm said...

It's a bad time. I am concerned about the children. It was bad enough going through duck and cover, and the Cuban missile crisis, as a child. And, of course, none of this compares to children growing up in a war zone. But it's never a good thing. Alana

peppylady (Dora) said...

Everyone want to feel safe. When I was young I belong to the YWCA...(young woman Christian Association) enjoy it.
But things have change as we become more divide and polarized.
I recall going to the airport and watching the jet land and take off.
I know someone who had a date in cockpit of jet.
Not sure if those days will be back. But I still have faith in people here.
Coffee is on

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