Security Industry Responds to Katrina

Industry pours out its energy and heart to help those in need

In response to my eyewitness account from Katrina, a lot of the companies in our industry have recognized the value they play in terms of supporting the victims of hurricane Katrina.

Here’s a quick run down of what we’ve heard:

Carolyn Hoffman, the director of human resources, reports that SimpleTech is working to support those affected in this time of need and has created an employee-match fund. Any employee who donates to the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina Relief Fund in September will have their contributions matched by the company.

According to Joe Olmeasted Jr., director of marketing communications for Pelco, "In one afternoon, Pelco employees raised close to $7,000 which combined with matching Pelco funds, allowed Pelco to write a check to the American Red Cross for $13,495.30."

Jim Mann, vice president of the commercial/industrial division of the Norment Security Group, reports that the company, which is a part of Compudyne Corp., "has set up a matching (up to 10K) contribution to the Red Cross. We had our HR people send out the initial e-mail to employees and within the hour we had $1,400 sent in. We fully expect that we will get the employee contributions up to $10,000 with our parent company kicking in the matching $10,000.00."

Jim Lind, a security and travel specialist with Vectren Corporation, said that his employer is making a $50,000 contribution toward the relief effort. The company is a utility provider and has provided a number of crews to the area to work multiple 16-hour shifts to help restore power to the devastated area.

Heather Klein, the marketing communications manager for Giesecke & Devrient, which prints banknotes and securities for over 60 countries and helps secure against counterfeiting of securities and smart cards, notes that G&D is matching dollar for dollar contributions that employees make to the Red Cross.

Carol Langdon of Integrity Consulting Partners reports that the company is providing a wireless/solar powered alarm and monitoring system in the area.

IR (Ingersoll Rand) knows the effect of the hurricane firsthand. With three of the company's facilities and more than 100 employees affected by the storm, the company is directly involved in the local response. On top of that, IR says it will "continue to pay all affected employees through the end of September, and will re-evaluate the situation at that time." The company is "putting processes in place to get emergency funds to them right away." IR says it will be providing temporary housing assistance for its employees who have been made homeless, and will be contributing $100,000 to the American Red Cross National Disaster Relief Fund.

Jimmy McClellan, of Cleveland, Miss.,-based ADT dealer Security Services Inc. notes that the ADT dealer website has posted a list of dealers in the affected are and that the company is accepting donations "from the ADT family to help these people that have lost their businesses." McClellan adds, "We are trying to do what we can to help these people by directly sending them money. God bless them all."

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