The fundamental process of a free and fair election is under attack in our country, and with just four weeks left before a historic election, the leaders of our nation’s law enforcement agencies need to prepare for a crucial political event, the likes of which we have potentially not seen in our lifetimes.
Civil unrest, domestic terrorism operatives, and a volatile political landscape have combined to create a zeitgeist moment in American politics, and police agencies nationwide need to engage in strategic, inclusive and educated pre-planning now.
Potential Security Threats & Dangers Linked To The 2020 Election
Even a casual perusal of social media platforms can provide a barometer of the levels of discourse and threats already being levied against policing places and electoral processes with less than a month to go before the November 3 election. If police agencies are not currently monitoring those sites for the conversations already taking place, they need to begin doing so immediately, as several of the agents have already shown their game plans.
Twenty years ago, our nation’s law enforcement leaders enlisted the aid of computer experts and specialized software to make sure their communications and emergency services were not going to be crippled by the arrival of the January 1, 2000, a years-long planning process branded with the foreboding Y2K moniker.
Now, like then, pre-planning, crisis planning, and an approach that enlists the talents and resources of a community and its administrative processes is crucial to staving off a raft of potential Election Day conflicts. The actions could include voter intimidation, demonstrations, First Amendment movements, shows of force from armed militia, and challenges to rules and regulations being properly followed by front-line poll workers and local election commissions.
How The Edward Davis Company Is Responding To Potential Threats at Polling Places
At the Edward Davis Company, we have already deployed support teams to several large-size urban locations that have already seen an uptick on inferred threats at their polling places. Our risk management and compliance teams stand prepared to support local law enforcement and municipal leaders in crafting effective pre-planning operations for their communities.
The Crime and Justice Institute nonprofit just recently published an informative roadmap that provides a multi-faceted framework for public safety to help prepare for many of the potential eventualities. A copy of their report can be viewed at https://www.cjinstitute.org/publication/elections/
Bi-Partisan Preparations for The Safety & Security of Our Upcoming Election
To be clear: effective and smart planning is not tied to political affiliation. It is a fundamental responsibility of police and other law enforcement entities to protect our democracy. An adequate plan will include effective communications, community engagement, and safety protocols for everyone involved, including our nation’s police officers.
The bottom line is governments and police departments must have comprehensive safety plans in place for Election Day, taking into account multiple scenarios that could jeopardize our democratic voting process. Election crisis management planning has to begin immediately.