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Putting a safety plan in place

Putting a safety plan in place

Posted: May 10, 2018 9:09 PM
Updated: May 10, 2018 10:48 PM

MASON CITY, Iowa- Assisted living homes are typically viewed as a calm and safe place, but it is not immune to a threat or act of violence. That is why Katie Byerly, the Assistant Director of Nursing at Good Shepherd wants to be prepared.
“We train our staff on active shooters so we’re always aware of anything that might be going on in our building and how staff will be able to respond,” she said.
Byerly says Good Shepherd employs around 300 staff members who help assist 200 resident. That’s a lot of people to keep safe. While she has never encountered violence in her work place before, she works to prevent it.
“We’re looking at changes in society and our nursing home and different employees that come and go in different family members that come and go,” she said. “It's very important that we are able to recognize any threats that might happen.”
Which is why she is attending a course Thursday on how to identify behaviors of those who might be a threat before it’s too late.
John Halbrook works with Safe Guard Iowa Partnership and teams up with local law enforcement agencies to educate them on what to look for.
“We're looking for things that put people into an ideological situation where they think violence is an acceptable answer and we want to identify those people earl,” Halbrook said.
While he says gun violence and active shooter training are what many agencies are asking for help with after a number of shootings in the last several years. He says putting a master plan together should be everyone’s first priority.
“If you have a fire in your building or you have a medical emergency in your building you've got a good foundation to work for him then what you have in place then you can talk about specific hazards,” he said.
And Byerly says she hopes to teach her staff in the near future.
“I am planning on having an in-service plan next week,” she said.

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