Riots have broken out all over the United States and brought businesses to a screeching halt. The death of George Floyd has sparked a nationwide outrage that has brought people to the streets in protest. Several protests by the Black Lives Matter movement have morphed into riots and looting in response to police shelling mace and tear gas at protesters. Local businesses are already trying to recover from the coronavirus crisis. And these riots have destroyed them, making it a cause of concern for many.
As a repair store owner, your store is going to need all the protection it can get from the riots. Your inventory is something that many would consider desirable, and protecting it is necessary. Here are some tips to help keep you safe.
Remove valuables from your property
Your repair store carries a lot of things that are considered valuable. Phones, computers, TVs, musical instruments, accessories… they’re all prime targets for looters. What’s more important is the cash that you keep in your store. Since money is the most valuable item to many, don’t expect to have your cash register be spared if your repair store is broken into.
The best idea is to remove all valuables and cash from the premises before any riots start. Loading whatever inventory you have into a safe location elsewhere is the easiest way to protect your business. For smaller items, you can transport them using your vehicle and store them in a strongbox at your home. For larger ones, look to acquire nondescript storage space nearby, such as a container, and store them there. You’ll need to make sure it’s nearby so you can easily move it to and from your repair store, while also making sure it doesn’t seem like a place rioters would target.
Post signs around your business
If you’re not going to be around your store when riots start, it’s best to leave signs up to protect it. These signs serve as visual indicators for people and will help deter them from looting your repair store. Putting signs up that support the Black Lives Matter movement, or simply announcing that your store has nothing of value inside can be a big help. Not only will it help de-escalate the situation around your property, but will also show your solidarity with the protests (if you happen to support it), or at least help protect it in your absence.
Talk to the protest organizers about riots
It would be a good idea to coordinate with the protest organizers in your neighborhood before any riots start. Getting in touch with the people protesting and letting them know you want to protect your business can really help in the situation.
Many protestors themselves have shown to be averse to the idea of rioting and looting, and have protected businesses in the heat of the moment. Contacting them to help you out can make sure they inform their base about keeping away from your repair store and protecting it. It may also help ease up tensions within the community. You can find your protest organizers online through social media or other channels, and contact them via direct message to get yourself started.
Do not confront looters by yourself
In case you are do get to experience looting firsthand, we advise you NOT to confront them directly. Engaging with rioters and looters in a negative manner can make your business a bigger target for them. Moreover, you may lack the necessary equipment and proper training to take care of the situation. This could lead to bodily harm and injury to either you or someone else, and may even be grounds for legal trouble.
Instead of handling the situation on your own, look to engage greater security and professionals for the job. Hiring security guards that man your store can make it a deterrent for people who attempt to break in and loot. Trained guards can help protect your property, de-escalate situations and have people wary of attacking your premises. They’re also in possession of equipment that gets the job done.
In this time of crisis, it is best to stay safe and keep yourself protected. Trouble with rioters and looters can escalate significantly, and we recommend taking all necessary precautions. The Black Lives Matter protests and the murder of George Floyd have unveiled the massive security issues in the United States, and you’ll need to find a way to protect yourself as best you can in this situation. You can always start your business again during this economic crisis using these tips. However, keeping your repair store safe is a greater priority now.
As a final word, we hope you stay safe during this coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing protests.