Employee safety concerns fuels bullet-resistant glass installation at Ringgold City Hall
After growing safety concerns, bullet-resistant glass now stands between Ringgold City Hall administration employees and residents.
The glass was installed in April, but one employee told Channel 3 they are still adjusting to a safer work environment.
For the past four years, Christy Fleming has worked as an administrative assistant at city hall. On average, she says she encounters up to 100 people each day.
“When you come in here for anything pertaining to the city or the police department we're the ones that you come into when you walk through the front doors,” Fleming said. “In the past we've always been face to face with them with nothing there.”
It a sometimes-scary reality Fleming says she and the three other women she works with had to cope with, especially when it comes angry residents and customers.
“You know it's always in the back of your mind that somebody can walk up you know maybe if you have your back turned or you're not paying attention,” she said. “You know things like that are always a concern when you were with the public or you work with any kind of sensitive information.”
It's because of that fear and recent events around the nation, Mayor Pro Tem Terry Crawford decided to do something. As a result, the city bought three panels of bullet resistant glass to install at the front desk. The glass is nearly two inches thick and came with a $24,000 price tag. We’re told the fact that the glass was customized contributed to the cost.
“Having this here give us that barrier. We can relax. We know there is nothing we need to worry about. We're real appreciative of it. It makes us feel safer and more protected,” Fleming said.
Fleming says needing this kind of protection is disappointing, but necessary.
“It's a fact of reality so we're going to deal with it as best we can. We're going to be proactive and make sure that everyone is safe when they come in and until they leave here everyday.”