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Police, Schools Take Part in Active Threat Response Training


AMHERST, Mass. (WGGB) — Planning ahead and being aware of your surroundings can keep you safe during an active shooting situation.

“It’s a very difficult situation to have a one size fits all approach so to speak. For these types of things, but there are options that you can put into any scenario to put yourself in a better position of safety,” said UMass Amherst Police Chief John Horvath.

Thursday night, the UMass Police Department held an “Active Threat” Response Workshop to help people develop ideas on how to respond to a shooter or other violent situation.

There is no standard policy, instead each community, school system and business needs to set up a plan of their own.

Police officers and school administrators were among the many attending the workshop.

“The school has lots of doors and I feel totally unprepared to deal with any kind of emergency,” said Ronnie Booxbaum, Easthampton after school program coordinator.

“The more information we get, the more training we get, the better and then it’s just shared,” said Sunderland Police Chief Jeff Gilbert.

“I think I’m gonna take back, this is an everyday constant effort that we need to be mindful every minute of the day to keep kids safe,” said Sunderland Elementary School principal Tim Merritt.

A basic emergency plan includes: knowing how to secure a door or room, being familiar with the exits and where to go. In addition to 9-1-1 also have local police department’s phone numbers. ¬†This makes it easy to get to your local police department when using a cell phone, because 9-1-1 connects directly to state police.

For more helpful information and how to develop a plan check out the resources below.



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