Gonzalo Law is committed to creating a safe environment for clients and employees of the firm. This requires creating an emergency plan for any and all possible scenarios including, but not limited to, an active shooter situation. This plan illustrates how to act in the presence of an active shooter and includes detailed instructions on further steps to take depending on the circumstance of the emergency situation. Employees will also be provided with a map of easily accessible escape routes in the work building. This plan was created based on information provided by the Department of Homeland Security, the United  States Department of Labor, and other outside companies who have also created their own active shooter policies.

  • EPrior to taking action with this plan, it is important to ask all employers to provide emergency contacts.
  • EAdvanced Preparedness in Evaluating whether to evacuate or shelter-in-place:
In times of emergency, evaluating whether to evacuate or shelter in place is crucial and depends on a variety of factors, including your location. Employees should be provided with a map of escape routes and emergency exits in their employee handbook. Employers should, in addition, take time to show escape routes and exits to each of their employers. Escape routes and exits should be displayed on walls in case employees cannot get immediate access to their handbooks. Both employees and employers should be trained to effectively handle this situation with the idea of possibly having clients present, in case they need to be responsible for guiding clients to safety along with themselves.
  • EDeciding to Evacuate:

Should you decide you have a clear and quick way to evacuate the building, the following steps should be taken:

  • Have a chain of command. It is a common practice to select an individual who has practice, knowledge, training, or certifications to effectively deal with emergency situations. It is critical employers make sure employees know who this individual is at all times.
  • Evacuate regardless of whether or not others agree to do the same. There is limited time, so if you deem it best to escape, do so.
  • Only if it is immediately possible, help others escape.
  • Leave belongings behind.
  • Keep your hands visible. Follow the police officer’s explicit instruction.
  • Do not attempt to move wounded individuals.
  • When you are safe, call 911.
  • E Deciding to shelter-in-place:

Should you decide there is no clear escape and the location of the shooter is unknown or nearby, follow the following procedures:

  • Go inside the nearest unlocked room, lock the door, and turn off the lights.
  • Barricade the door to attempt to keep the shooter from unlocking the door.
  • Turn off any ringers on any electronic devices.
  • When you think it is safe to do so, contact 911 while still hidden and send a message to emergency contacts to alarm them of the situation.
  • Stay calm and quiet until it is clear the threat is gone and you are safe to evacuate.
  • If you cannot get to a room, stay hidden behind large furniture and dial 911. If you cannot detail the situation to the operator and need to stay quiet, leave the line open, and allow the operator to listen.
  • EWhen there is no way to escape or take shelter

Should you decide there is no clear escape and the location of the shooter is unknown or nearby, follow the following procedures:

  • Go inside the nearest unlocked room, lock the door, and turn off the lights.
  • Barricade the door to attempt to keep the shooter from unlocking the door.
  • Turn off any ringers on any electronic devices.
  • When you think it is safe to do so, contact 911 while still hidden and send a message to emergency contacts to alarm them of the situation.
  • Stay calm and quiet until it is clear the threat is gone and you are safe to evacuate.
  • If you cannot get to a room, stay hidden behind large furniture and dial 911. If you cannot detail the situation to the operator and need to stay quiet, leave the line open, and allow the operator to listen.
  • EWhen law enforcement arrives:

When law enforcement arrives, it is vital you follow their exact instructions. The purpose of law enforcement is to stop the active shooter. Officers will proceed to the areas where the most recent shots were heard. Be sure to immediately raise your hands, keep your fingers spread out, and keep your hands and arms visible at all times. Put down any items in your hands. Avoid making quick movements toward officers such as holding on to them for safety. You will also want to avoid pointing, screaming, and/or yelling at officers. Do not stop to ask officers for directions on evacuating, just proceed in the direction in which the officers entered the premises.

Provide the officers with any important information when asked such as:

  • Location of the shooter.
  • The number of shooters, if there are more than one.
  • Physical description of the shooter(s).
  • Number and type of weapons the shooter(s) has in their possession(s).
  • The number of potential victims.