Threat assessment is an important part of our roles. Whether done by us, our team, or through a supported element, threats of violence posed by persons (or groups) of interest can become a clear and present danger in a moment. Active threats occur and often those we are charged with protecting can be a target or merely present when an issue materializes.
A bipartisan bill aims to create a common behavioral threat assessment framework. H.R. 838 – The Threat Assessment, Prevention, and Safety (TAPS) act is sponsored by Representative Brian Babin of Texas. The bill’s aims are to:
• Provide guidelines and best practices across the Federal Government and down to the state and local levels.
• Provide states and local entities the training, resources, and support needed to stand-up community-based, multidisciplinary behavioral threat assessment and management units.
• Establish a temporary working group made up of experts in BTAM to make recommendations to Congress for a National Strategy for preventing targeted violence.
The United States Secret Service’s behavioral threat assessment process is seen as a gold standard for understanding and dealing with threats of violence. The TAPs act is an effort to create common operating information (COI) so we can best visualize and communicate between protectors at all levels, with the same understanding.
While we are not politically aligned, the IPSB view this as an essential step forward to getting ahead of the violence and being proactive. Senator Marco Rubio stated, “By bringing threat assessment experts together and utilizing evidence-based behavioral threat assessment and management processes, this bill will help equip our communities with the tools they need to prevent future tragedies.” (Lemongello, 2019.)
The IPSB proudly supports this bill along with parallel organizations such as the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals (ATAP) and the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP). We encourage you to contact your own State’s representatives and ask them to support and vote in favor of passing the TAPs act.
Creating common language and action will only help our industry in its primary mission; protection. Find out more about the TAPs act, here: https://babin.house.gov/taps/default.aspx
The International Protective Security board (IPSB)
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