Thursday, January 6, 2022

Heighten Security Alert To All Lodges in the 21st Masonic District


Worshipful Masters, Wardens and Brethren all,

In light of the suspected arson attack against the Grand Lodge of Ireland in Dublin this past New Years Eve, the arson fires that burned down three lodges in Metro Vancouver British Columbia Canada in March 2021 and the Molotov Cocktail attack against the Grand Lodge of New York in October 2019, it is requested that all lodges here in the 21st Masonic District (Florida) take immediate steps to assure the safety and security of their lodge property and the safety of the Brethren and visitors to the lodge.

Heightened security protocols should be used during the on and off hours of the lodge this includes the use of a networked security system such as security cameras that can be accessed remotely by the Worshipful Master and authorized officers or lodge Brethren using a computer and/or a mobile device and a wired alarm system that is connected to all of your lodge's doors and windows that is connected to a reputable Central Station alarm company who can make immediate notifications the lodge.

During a Stated or Called Communication or during an open event such as a lodge fundraiser or open house you see someone who you consider a problem or a threat, immediately seek out and speak to the Tyler, Secretary and Worshipful Master so they can follow the prescribed protocols.

If during after hours when the lodge is closed you see someone on the lodge property or attempt to enter the lodge without authorization, DO NOT APPROACH THEM and immediately CALL 911.

The Worshipful Master should seek out and appoint trusted Brethren who live within a five mile or less radius of the lodge who can conduct periodic security checks of the lodge property and be responsible as the contact point for law enforcement such as the 911 dispatchers and patrol officers.

In addition to Brethren conducting security checks, the Worshipful Master and the lodge's Building Committee should coordinate with law enforcement whether it is a municipal police department, county sheriff or state highway patrol to have a patrol officer regularly conduct a roaming patrol of the lodge property, especially during the late evening and early morning hours when the building is unoccupied.

An ongoing security record should be kept by the Lodge Secretary of all person(s) who have either full or partial access to the interior and exterior of the lodge property this includes those who currently possess a key to the lodge doors and the access code for the lodge security system. All keys should be immediately returned to the Secretary of the lodge and the lodge security access code should be changed to prevent those person(s) who are no longer considered to be trusted with such access.

If you have any further questions please contact Bro. Rick Schwarz at  the 21st Masonic District office via email office@21stmasonicdistrict.com.

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