The Door and Hardware Institute (DHI), and the Door Security & Safety Foundation (DSSF) have issued a combined statement advocating the use of classroom doors lockable from the inside, known to be effective as a line of defense in an active shooter or lockdown situation.
According to a 2015 report by the Sandy Hook Advisory Commission, doors that lock from the inside are most effective in securing classrooms, and to date, no active shooter has breached a locked classroom door. The report supported DHI’s recommendation that schools should elect to install code-compliant and industry-tested door hardware.
DHI is an association of more than 5,000 design and construction experts, building code officials, local code experts, and professionals in the commercial door and hardware industry, with the technical knowledge, skills, and expertise needed to balance life safety and security. DSSF meanwhile works within the building construction community, advocating for the expertise and knowledge of DHI-credentialed professionals.
In recent weeks, many states in the U.S. have called for legislation seeking to examine, report, and improve school safety measures, specifically pertaining to doors and locks. DHI and DSSF encourage school districts to work with door safety and security professionals in adopting safety and security protocols and implementing best industry practices for door and hardware solutions, as detailed in the DHI School Security and Safety Policy Principles. They also advise schools to use guidelines developed by the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS) when developing their school safety plans.
The organizations called out door and hardware professionals within the industry to rely on DHI’s Ambassador Toolkit in creating more awareness about the industry, and drafting letters to school stakeholders to explain proven door and hardware best practices in life safety and security compromises, and pitch their services.