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Synagogue Safety Officer Program


To address the concerns of some local Rabbis and congregants, CCL Shul Members developed a rigorous vetting, training and certification program for Shul safety team volunteers. Our Synagogue Safety Officer (SSO) Certification Program is in addition to the 16-hour class and certification required by the State of Illinois for a Concealed Carry License.

In collaboration with local Rabbis, public officials, the Homeland Security Training Institute, private security contractors, and professional firearms instructors, we developed the Synagogue Safety Officer program.  This program provides synagogue leadership with the opportunity to recommend a volunteer application to be vetted for synagogue safety responsibilities. This vetting process is overseen by licensed independent professional background screening companies, with the training and certification process overseen by state and nationally certified firearms instructors.

​The vetting process includes verifying current firearms licensing, FBI/State fingerprint background check, drug testing, psychological testing, a no-alcohol use agreement while carrying a firearm, and a one million dollar concealed carry insurance policy.

​Once a candidate passes the vetting process and successfully completes the first range session, the candidate is conditionally accepted for the first year while they earn their full certification.  The training includes 6 hours quarterly with an additional training session at the candidate’s synagogue or utilizing a simulated mock-up or video simulator of the same.

Unfortunately, times have changed and we need to adapt to this new reality.  The average active shooter incident lasts 3 minutes, with an average of 12 victims per minute. The average police response time to active shooter incidents is 3-5 minutes. This means that whether we like it or not,  congregants will always be the First Responders. When seconds count, the police are only minutes away. The reality is that the only person that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. 

For more information about our SSO Certification Program, please contact us at 

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