Sunday, May 7, 2017

Is it safe?

Event Security is a hot topic space right now and will continue to be for some time to come. Safeguarding today’s stadiums, venues and arenas requires daily work with focused, concentrated efforts. The significance of ongoing training, education/career development resources for staff cannot be underscored.

Furthermore, the threats, challenges and vulnerabilities remain for those entrusted with duty of care responsibilities within the space.

Security is an aspect of sports that often gets overlooked, yet is integral to the entertainment value of the fan experience. This premise is shared all over the world. Agencies work as a team to ensure fans that their choice to attend a game won’t come with repercussions that will affect their lives outside of fandom.

Talk to anyone in the today’s Sports & Entertainment Industry ( a multi-billion dollar juggernaut) about what fuels the market. Most will tell you that it’s all about safety/security and the overall fan experience.

Billionaire owners, ownership groups, sports marketers, venue directors, contract security, guest services, box office, merchandising, security, those entrusted duty of care responsibilities, understand that along with corporate sponsors, the well-paying fan base drives the market.

I recently recorded a podcast with James A. De Meo. James is a Retired Nassau County Police Detective with over 25 years of law enforcement, security and consulting experience. I won’t steal my own thunder here, as you can listen to the podcast yourself on the website.

But here was the “thing” that stayed with me for hours…….long after the podcast recording was over:

We will never be safe.

The sheer magnitude, the complexity of trying to keep us “safe” at airports, football games, movie theaters, shopping malls - it grows with each passing day. Drones flying into stadiums. Cybersecurity issues. Malware. Campus shootings.

There is an innocence lost that our children, and their children will never recover. The same technology that allows us to enjoy Netflix, and Uber and Airbnb has also created a never ending battle of good vs. evil. A type of arms race of people trying to do us harm, and those trying to protect us.

I just pause and remember a simpler time, when the thoughts of going to a stadium or an arena would never, ever be associated with the words terror or fear.

They say that things work in cycles. I can only hope that we can cycle back to a simpler time.