California Alarm Association (CAA) Summer Convention: May 14-17, Palm Springs, Calif.

“Most police officers continue to believe electronic alarm systems are a worthwhile crime deterrent.” stated Security Sales & Integration Editor Scott Goldfine in previewing the findings of the magazine’s new “2003 Police False Alarms Survey.” The presentation and ensuing panel discussion by law enforcement representatives highlighted the California Alarm Association Summer Convention in Palm Springs, Calif., May 14-17.

Goldfine explained how SSI‘s nationwide study of hundreds of police officers demonstrates their unwavering confidence in alarm systems despite all the recent negative media exposure. “Only a small minority believe the false alarm issue is insurmountable and most want to work with us, offering renewed hope of finding common ground,” said Goldfine.

The survey’s assertions were further supported when Former Irvine (Calif.) Police Chief Charles Brobeck led a panel of senior law enforcement personnel for an overview of their responsibility for public safety. All of the panelists spoke out in favor of alarm systems and urged attendees to contact and cooperate with their local agencies.

The keynote speaker was John Jennings, CEO of Safeguard Security and Communications in Scottsdale, Ariz.  Among many salient points, Jennings stressed eliminating bureaucracy at every level of your organization to optimally serve your customer. He has led Safeguard from a $3 million to $21 million company the past decade. The company’s sales and marketing savvy earned it three 2003 Security Sales & Integration SAMMY awards.

Association members and guests were also provided updates on the Los Angeles Burglar Alarm Task Force and the statewide Fire/Life Safety Technician Apprenticeship Program, as well as informed who won this year’s CAA Youth Scholarship Award.

L.A. Task Force member George Gunning of USA Alarm Systems in Monrovia, Calif., and CAA Vice President George De Marco of Greater Alarm in Irvine, Calif., provided insight into the committee’s yearlong process. In the end, elected officials, community members, alarm owners and the industry realized that verified response would increase crime and drain police resources.

It was also announced that the state-approved apprenticeship and training program has been established and is intended to formalize the industry as a professional trade. The three-year program includes a prevailing wage schedule and will allow the association to recruit highly qualified candidates for the workforce.

Finally, CAA Youth Scholarship winner Candice Blohm and her father, Lieutenant Joseph Blohm of the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department, who participated in the law enforcement panel, were honored during the convention. She won first place in Northern California and the state of California with a total prize of $2,000. She was also selected for second place in national program.

CAA will gather in San Francisco in December for the CAA Winter Convention at the Crowne Plaza, highlighted by a banquet honoring Bay Alarm‘s Bruce and Roger Westphal with the George A. Weinstock Award.

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