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Planning and Managing Security for Major Special Events: Guidelines for Law Enforcement

NCJ Number
Edward Connors
Date Published
October 2007
128 pages
These guidelines are intended to assist local law enforcement officials in planning and managing security for events that attract large numbers of people.
The report includes examples of best practices used by Federal agencies with security responsibilities, as well as strategies that have been effective for local law enforcement and private security. The focus is on national and regional events that may be targets for terrorists, other criminals, and protestors. The guidelines embody six core principles for major event planning and management. First, officials should plan for worst-case scenarios in addition to the crimes and incidents typically associated with major public events (fights, drunkenness, etc.). Second, officials should weigh the intrusive measures that might provide more security against the jurisdiction's desire to have events that are enjoyable, well-attended, and profitable. Third, officials should ensure that security events are safe without infringing on the constitutional rights of participants, including freedom of speech and assembly. Fourth, officials should establish new and effective, albeit temporary, organizational arrangements, management structures, and communication methods. Fifth, officials should ensure that the area of the jurisdiction not involved in the event receive essential law enforcement services, regardless of the size or importance of the event. Sixth, officials should ensure that appropriate Federal officials, such as Department of Homeland Security State Homeland Security Advisors, are informed in advance about events with national or international significance, so as to make Federal officials aware of the nature of the event and possibly gain Federal support for security measures. Guidelines are divided into pre-event planning, security management during the event, and post-event activities. 3 exhibits and appended selected bibliography and other resources, sample security planning organization charts, a checklist for an event security plan, and guiding principles for major special event security