Installation constable program promotes security, vigilance

  • Published
  • By Shadi May
  • 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs staff writer
The mission of the security forces members at home is to provide a secure working and living environment, but there is a particular mission within the unit which belongs to the installation security constable.

The constables play a vital role in implementing a security education program which directly affects Air Force protection-level resources that are located in both the restricted and controlled areas of an installation.

However, to promote an effective security program for these resources, the constables must engage their reach beyond those areas and be involved in all parts of the installation.

"My responsibility is to raise security awareness and build vigilance throughout the base community, not just for the people who work in those particular areas," said Tech. Sgt. Dan Merrill, Fairchild's NCO-in-charge of the installation security constable program. "To implement the program, I get involved in areas from newcomers' briefings to commander's calls, standups and unit training days."

Training the base personnel consists of two phases - orientation and continuation training. The constables conduct the orientation training during a newcomers' briefing.

"Conducting training during the newcomers' phase starts members out on the right foot," said Sergeant Merrill. "This is where I let everyone know they are shareholders and that whether they are active duty members, civilian employees or dependents, they all play an important role in securing our installation by being involved and having watchful eyes."

Two important measures on which the constables focus, during either phase, are the Helping Hand and Covered Wagon concepts which are to recognize possible or probable hostile acts, respectively. These measures are to provide the base population with scenarios, which would train and test them to distinguish between the two acts while in progress. The training exercises prepare personnel to respond accordingly.

"The idea is to increase vigilance by learning from positive and negative performances," added Sergeant Merrill.

The second phase, which contains two parts, includes working with unit security managers first and putting everything into practice with unit members next. The constables work closely with security managers to see if their training plan meets the security education program standards. During the second part of this phase, the constables go out to the units, ask questions and perform scenarios to see how the members execute their security training and responsibilities.

"We have valuable lessons learned from these exercises," said Sergeant Merrill. "They allow me to observe their performances, make recommendations, and based on those recommendations, units have implemented great improvements in their security measures, whether it has been adding cipher locks or changing security policies."

There is also an incentive for members who perform in an outstanding manner during their evaluation exercises. "If individuals are able to detect an unusual or suspicious activity, stop it to their best ability and notify the security forces control center, I consider them outstanding performers and recommend a one-day pass to the respective unit commander," added Sergeant Merrill.

The 92nd Security Forces Installation Security Program contributed to the unit's overall "Outstanding" rating during a recent Headquarters Air Mobility Command Unit Compliance Inspection. The inspection team formally recognized the program as "a superior activity which created an exceptional level of protection and security awareness wing-wide."

While the term "Constable" is unique to the AMC bases, all Air Force commands practice this installation security measure under different umbrellas within the security forces.

The Fairchild's Constable Helping Hand hotline is 247-7777 and rings at the Security Forces Control Center. For more information on the program, call the security forces installation security section at 247-3423.