Preparing for a Safe Easter
With Easter less than a month away, now is a good time to begin preparations for one of the busiest days on the church calendar. With larger attendance numbers and numerous activities being hosted by the church, it is important to review your safety and risk management procedures for the big weekend. Consider the suggestions and tips below for keeping members, visitors and staff safe.
There are many factors to consider when preparing for larger crowds at your church. While you may already have safety and risk management procedures in place, think about the following ideas when reviewing those actions and getting ready for Easter weekend:
- Parking Lot and Walking Surfaces – Make sure parking lots, sidewalks and other walking surfaces are in good condition. Look for any potential hazards, such as pot holes, loose handrails or inadequate lighting. This will reduce the risk of potential trips and falls. Also ensure that speed bumps, parking stops and curbs are vividly marked with a contrasting paint color.
- Volunteers and Security – Any security, off-duty officers or volunteer parking lot attendants being utilized during the weekend should be wearing bright and reflective clothing to increase their visibility. Directing traffic and assisting pedestrians can help reduce chaos and prevent any confusion. Outside security should look for any suspicious activity and quickly communicate any concerns. Also be sure that your indoor security and ushers are following proper procedures.
- Emergencies – Prior to the weekend, review all fire or other disaster evacuation plans and emergency protocol. Be sure all First Aid kits are stocked and, if applicable, defibrillators have been checked.
- Nurseries and Sunday School Rooms – Inspect children’s areas for any dangers, such as unprotected electrical outlets, unsecured supply cabinets or unanchored furniture. The busy weekend can bring in a large influx of children, so make sure you have an adequate amount of staff scheduled.
Easter Egg Hunts
A big Easter tradition is a children’s Easter egg hunt. While this event is fun for the participants, improper planning can lead to potential safety concerns. There are three main factors to consider when planning an egg hunt:
- Hiding Locations – While there’s a desire to make egg hiding spots difficult and challenging, make sure safety is the number one concern. Hide eggs in locations that could not pose any danger to a child and are away from electrical outlets or breakable items.
- Use of Employees and Volunteers – Egg hunts can become chaotic with so much excitement among children. Utilize employees and volunteers to supervise the egg hunt and ensure that children remain in safe areas during the activity.
- Egg Contents – If your church is using plastic eggs in your hunt, consider food allergies and choking hazards when selecting the egg contents.
Plan for a Safe Easter
As your church is planning for Easter activities, make sure all safety issues for each particular activity have been addressed. Also be sure that any off-site locations for activities are pre-inspected. Reviewing your safety and risk management procedures is a good practice in preparing for Easter or any event with larger attendance numbers. Proper planning allows your church to be more prepared for potential emergencies and will keep your members, visitors and staff safe.
© 2020 The GuideOne Center for Risk Management, LLC. All rights reserved.This material is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to give specific legal or risk management advice, nor are any suggested checklists or action plans intended to include or address all possible risk management exposures or solutions. You are encouraged to retain your own expert consultants and legal advisors in order to develop a risk management plan specific to your own activities.