City Hall has implemented some new security measures for those working behind the front desk on the first-floor entryway. Citizen service representatives (CSRs) will soon be working behind a transparent enclosure that protects them from potentially threatening situations that may arise in the front lobby.
City Clerk Beth Cecil said the protective enclosure is a precautionary measure for CSRs who assist residents with various issues, from tax payments to city ordinances. While no serious issues have occurred at City Hall, this extra layer of protection drives an even deeper wedge between CSRs and threatening circumstances that could arise.
Sometimes, Cecil said, CSRs are the first person a resident sees when they walk inside the building, and these individuals are not always pleasant to the CSRs inside the building.
“We do have individuals who come into City Hall for a variety of things they need to take care of,” Cecil said. “They do sometimes come in disgruntled — they can get angry.”
A protective wall has been installed on the left-hand side of City Hall’s first floor for several years now, and its purpose has been in protecting the finance department who works on the other side of the glass. These individuals have also come across irate customers in the past, Cecil said.
But city officials felt a protective enclosure was necessary for CSRs as one aspect of their job is in taking formal complaints made toward the city. Three part-time CSR workers rotate between working the front desk.
The City contracted with Kentucky Mirror and Plate Glass Company to have the enclosure installed.
“We also have City staff who are working on setting it up,” Cecil said.
Because of the extra layer of protection the enclosure provides, Cecil said the city’s three CSRs have been receptive to the changes being made in the lobby.
“It gives them a little more security, coupled with the fact that the front door is always opening and closing throughout the day, so it provides some climate control for the CSRs too,” Cecil said.
The change made at City Hall marks the second significant improvement in precautionary safety measures taken by city and county government officials. The Morton J. Holbrook Judicial Center adopted additional security measures in January.
“We’ve not had any major issues happen,” Cecil said. “This is just taking a proactive step.”