On February 6, 2019, Governor Phil Murphy signed Bill No. A764, also known as “Alyssa’s Law”. The bill requires all New Jersey public schools to install silent panic alarms that will alert law enforcement during emergencies such as an active shooter. “Alyssa’s Law” is a state requirement for all public elementary and secondary schools.
Alyssa’s Law/A764 addresses the issue of law enforcement response time when a life-threatening emergency occurs. The law calls for the installation of warning lights and a panic alarm in all New Jersey schools to provide the fastest possible support during a code red. In a code red, every second counts. The panic alarm, which will not be audible within the school building, must be directly linked to law enforcement authorities and must immediately transmit a signal or message to the authorities upon activation. The bill defines “panic alarm” as a silent security system signal generated by the manual activation of a device intended to signal a life-threatening or emergency-situation that requires a response from law enforcement. The bill also requires that all public elementary and secondary schools be equipped with a red emergency light that is affixed to the exterior of the school building in a highly visible location above or near the front entrance visible from the nearest public roadway or, if the school building is not visible from the nearest public roadway, then on that roadway. The emergency light must be linked to the school’s panic alarm so that it turns on when the panic alarm is activated.
In November, New Jersey voters approved the “Securing Our Children’s Future Bond Act”, to provide a $500 million bond that includes funding for school security among other school infrastructure improvements. All school districts are required to obtain certification of compliance with Alyssa’s Law regardless of whether or not the district intends to apply for a school security grant under the Bond Act.
As regulators begin enforcing the legislation, it is important that school administrators understand the security options and how to keep students safe. Help Alert is a system of personal safety devices for students and faculty using a real-time locating system. When a threat occurs, staff in need of assistance press a button on the small pendant, or mobile panic alarm device. Help Alert immediately and discreetly reports the pendant’s location to your security team and law enforcement without alerting a shooter. The system can be wired to integrate with already in place security alarms, devices, and lights for increased efficiency. Help Alert creates a secure productive environment in which students can focus on learning, and staff can focus on delivering a quality education. Plus, Help Alert runs on existing wiring so no additional cable infrastructure is required and install time is as quick as two days. With operating leases available, expenses can be managed to meet tight budgets.
Learn more about how OSI Technology serves K-12 schools, the Help Alert system, get a free quote, and make sure you are in compliance with Alyssa’s Law by contacting a technology advisor today.
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