What is the attitude of law enforcement agency staff and first responders towards security in mass gathering events?

Citizen’s risk perception

The events in Europe in recent years have made security and risk perception a topic with high interest. Citizens’ risk perception across the 28 EU member states has been surveyed by different Special Eurobarometer public opinion surveys. You can read a short summary in the article “How citizens in Europe perceive risk related to security: review of Special Eurobarometer reports”.
The perspective of collectively “constructing our security”

Enabling security as societal value is a guiding principle of the research carried out in LETSCROWD, a project funded by the European Union that studies security in mass gatherings and develops innovative tools and methodologies. A shift is needed from a vision of security as “guarantee of public order” to a perspective of “construction of security”. According to the last one, security is built and shared, and each stakeholder and citizen contributes to its maintenance.

Risk perception of first responders and law enforcement agency staff

EENA is a partner in LETSCROWD, the project that launched a survey to investigate the perception of security with respect to a new domain not yet explored at EU level: the mass gathering events.

The survey explores the:

  • Perception of security in mass gatherings events;
  • Perception of the actions taken by the law enforcement authorities and other stakeholders to combat threats at national and EU level;
  • Perception of the contributions given by new technologies to enhance security (especially in mass gatherings) and their impact on human rights and freedoms.

Why is it important?

When security is seen under this bottom-up perspective, the participation of involved practitioners, e.g. first responders and law enforcement agencies officers is of fundamental importance to guide and influence decision makers in establishing policies, investments and implement proper prevention and mitigation measures.

You are still on time to participate and voice your opinion, taking the survey here.

Would you like to know more about the topics?

A glimpse to the preliminary results of the survey

The analysis of the survey results is still ongoing; but some preliminary data have been extracted, while the final findings will be published in the next months.
What could become a threat for the safe and secure event execution?

Among the others aspects taken into account, crowd density, risky crowd behaviours and the physical characteristics of the venue were considered as the main aspects that could become a threat for the safe and secure event execution

What is the impact of new technologies?

Respondents are also asked to assess the impact that the development of new technologies have on:

  • the actions that public authorities carry out to ensure the security;
  • rights and freedoms of EU citizens and
  • EU citizens’ perception of security.

Although the majority of the respondents think that the technologies have a positive impact on the actions of public authorities to ensure the security and on the security of EU citizens, most of them also say that new technologies have a negative impact on EU citizens’ rights and freedoms.

This finding is also in line with the results shwowing that more than 50% of the experts think that people’s fundamental rights and freedoms have been restricted in the EU for reasons related to the fight against terrorism.

Your opinion matters, and you can now take the survey to help improve the safety of mass gathering events in Europe and beyond.

The survey results and the work reported in this article are done in the context of LETSCROWD. LETSCROWD is a project that has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, under grant agreement 740466.