|Hostile health care|
Editor’s Note: This story is being shared with us by Gangs Across America, an online source providing strategies to combat gangs across the nation. From time to time, Corrections.com will publish articles from the Gangs Across America website.
A common misconception held by health care workers (nurses, doctors, admin., etc..) health care security professionals, and law enforcement officers has led to a false sense of security. The misconception, simply stated, is that hospitals and health care facilities are neutral territory for gangs and other bad guys. I don't know where anyone came up with that idea. To the contrary, [these] other health care facilities are frequent venues for gang activity. After a long night of drinking, drugging, gang banging and fighting, many gang members, and their rivals, end up in hospital emergency rooms. And once at the ER, in an agitated or intoxicated state, violence is seconds away.
What I have seen, in my 25 years of law enforcement and my personal experience in health care facilities, is that gang members, drug dealers, drug abusers, and just the average everyday criminal needs little or no provocation to attack a doctor, nurse, or health care staff member. I have witnessed several incidents of violence. For no apparent reason, other than a long wait in the ER, one gang member smacked a nurse in the face. On another occasion, a prostitute threatened the lives of everyone in a doctor's waiting room a few months ago just because she didn't like the way others were looking at her.
There are many warning signs (indicators) of violence and/or gangs. Some things to look for are:
Sgt Lou Savelli has spent 25 years in law enforcement. 21 years in some of NYPD’s toughest assignments. He is currently a law enforcement and security trainer and is the CEO of a security firm called Homefront Security that provides security and armed escorts for healthcare professionals. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Other articles by Savelli:
Ideological connections between gangs and terrorists, 5/25/08
The gang terrorist connection, part II 6/2/08
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