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Trust in Trained and Certified Security Personnel



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Leumas Security Services LLC in Newport News, Virginia is dedicated to the safety of our clients. Read our blog to find out the many ways you can protect yourself, and to learn more about us.

Get The Career You Want And Keep It

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July 27, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic forced many people to look closely at their health and realize how much it meant to them. A lot of people did the same thing with their jobs and realized how little the job meant.


So, millions of people have been switching careers. They want more out of what they do for a living, and many of them have seen what can be done better and demand whatever changes they can get. Workers like those in the restaurant industry, for example, may have gotten wage increases, but they still handle hard work and want customers to be more understanding. Which they should be.


If you’re thinking about switching into the security profession, or any line of work that you want to make a long-term career, don’t forget something very important: your background.


In order to get, keep, or advance in whatever career you choose, you may need to get a background check. That is certainly true for people in security and law enforcement.


You also need to make sure you don’t lie on your application or résumé, get arrested, or regularly complain about your current employer on social media.


Speaking of social media, don’t share the worst aspects of yourself there. Few employers will welcome you to their payroll if your social media accounts are filled with pictures of you drunk or using drugs, participating in racist and sexist activities, or any other type of behavior they might find morally distasteful. You may not agree with your current or future employer’s thinking, but they sign your paycheck. Even if you are an entrepreneur, your clients may also disagree with your publicized behavior.


Thinking of getting a new tattoo? You might want to think twice about that, too, or at least where it is located. Tattoos are much more acceptable than they used to be, but your new career may not be as accepting of very visible body art as your old one. Or your too-visible body parts.


In Rent-A-Cop Reboot I encourage you to think about these types of things as you move up in the security profession, but anyone climbing a career ladder could be helped by keeping these things in mind.


A lot is changing these days, including what is considered professional behavior and clothing. It can be hard to keep up, but one thing will always be true: Today’s decisions affect your tomorrows.

Get Some Exercise...And Rent-A-Cop Reboot In More Virginia Stores!

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July 20, 2021

Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been talking about how your health is part of your security. That’s really important now that COVID-19 deaths and infections are rising again. The healthier we are, the better we are positioned to live in a world struggling to emerge from the pandemic.


Last week I talked about sleep. This week I want us to focus on exercise.


We all know exercise is important, but it’s hard to stay motivated enough to keep doing it. That's if we can even get started. So stop thinking of it as exercise.


If you are a security professional, think about exercise as taking care of life-saving equipment. That equipment is your body. You may need your strength, which supports your ability to think clearly, while handling a situation. In the last week, security guards have made headlines for being attacked, and for using a weapon during an altercation that resulted in the loss of a life. I am not commenting on any aspect of those specific cases, but I point them out to remind you that security work is important and sometimes dangerous. You need to be at your best.


No matter who you are, you may want to remember that exercise can be fun. Make time for activities like walking, dancing, or riding a bicycle. They’ll get you moving, and it won’t feel like a chore. Be careful if you decide to workout in the heat. A quick search online will give you examples of virtual workouts you can do indoors, as well as workouts you can do with your children.


Don’t forget to exercise your mind and spirit as well. Make time for things like:

*Having regular meals with your family.
*Spending time with loved ones without constantly checking your phone, or handling work. How about creating Game Night, Craft Night, or Pizza Night?
*Saying, “I love you” to those you cherish.
*Making birthdays and holidays special.
*Learning what your gift is, and using it to be a blessing to others.
*Learning the difference between your “wants” and your “needs,” so you can live a simpler life.
*Cleaning and organizing your home and/or your work space.
*Giving to your community. The greatest gifts we can give are simple acts of kindness.
*Appreciating what you have, especially if you (and those you care about) are healthy.
*Praying and/or meditating.


Dealing with the pandemic, keeping the business going, publishing Rent-A-Cop Reboot, taking care of my family, and going through cancer treatment—all at the same time—made most of the past year more than I would wish on my worst enemy. But God! I’m here to tell you to trust and believe, but also do the work.


God gave you an incredible body. Show your appreciation today by finding one small way to take better care of it.

*****

More good news about Rent-A-Cop Reboot on sale in selected Virginia Barnes & Noble stores! In addition to the book being at the Barnes & Noble in Newport News, you can now find it at these stores: Chesterfield Towne Center, Hampton's Peninsula Town Center,  Libbie Place Shopping Center in Richmond, and New Town Shops in Williamsburg. Thank you for helping us spread the word about what we designed to be a valuable resource for security professionals, career-switchers, and people thinking about starting their own business.

Get Some Shut-Eye

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July 13, 2021

Whether you are a security professional, solo-preneur, or stay-at-home parent - or whatever you do - you need a good night’s sleep. Every night.


A new study released last week showed that not only will missing one night of sleep hurt your sense of physical and mental well-being, but adults who don’t get the recommended 7 hours of sleep for at least 3 nights in a row will feel even worse.


The need for security professionals to get a good night’s sleep comes up more than once in my book, Rent-A-Cop Reboot. I understand the hustle that guards and a lot of other people go through, but I promise you that you will not be as effective as you think you will be if you are not well rested.


Lack of sleep will slow your reaction times and make it hard for you to pay attention, which is twice as bad if you’re “drowsy driving” to work. When you need sleep it will be harder to stay awake, no matter what time you are working. It will be harder to make good, quick decisions. It will be harder to understand what people are saying to you and to respond appropriately. In the security profession, these types of missteps could cost you your job, or worse.


Add to lack of sleep a couple of days without a nutritious meal, and you have a recipe for disaster. Even if you don’t make a mistake on the job in the near future, believe me when I say that regularly missing good nights of sleep will show up some day and in some way.


Make sure you get the sleep you need. If you have children, especially young ones, make sure they are getting good sleep, too, to avoid future health issues. If there are serious sleep problems, talk to your health care professional.


We have a lot of decisions to make as the nation moves into more face-to-face experiences since the pandemic began, and the Delta variant of COVID-19 spreads in areas with low vaccination rates. You make better decisions when your mind and body are in top shape. Getting 7 hours of shut-eye every night is one of the easiest ways to shape up.


Today’s sleep decisions affect your tomorrows.

*****

Special note about Rent-A-Cop Reboot: We are proud to announce that the book is on sale at the Barnes & Noble in Newport News, Virginia!  Thanks to the support of visionary Barnes & Noble staff members and people like you, we look forward to additional stores in our home state adding the book to their shelves. We'll keep you posted.

Health Is Security

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June 29, 2021

I know I’m blessed. Too many African American men are struck down in the prime of their lives by colon cancer. Today I am in remission, and I’m very clear about the fact that health is security, and security is health.


Consider your health as you handle your responsibilities this week. Do you have enough masks and gloves? Many places still require masks of certain workers in order to slow the spread of COVID-19. Yes, places are opening up, some places want workers to get vaccinated (which they can do), and people are taking vacations. But COVID’s still working. I require Leumas Security Services guards to wear masks while on duty in public spaces, especially if they are indoors.


To my security professionals: I want you to take every precaution you can to maintain your health.

Once you have COVID handled while working at, for example a club or special event, figure out how you’re going to effectively handle people who take things too far. For some of them, it’s been two years since they fully enjoyed the summer. They may have been struggling to manage COVID-related stress, and they need to blow off some steam.


If someone blows off too much steam, I have a tip in this week’s video (above) that can help you deal with the person. No matter where you are, always be prepared for someone who may violently react to your presence or instructions. Unfortunately, you don’t know if they really share your goal: for everyone to return home as healthy as they were when they left.


It’s easier to meet that goal when you start your shift as physically and emotionally healthy as possible. I learned a lot about the importance of self-care while working personal protection and nightclubs. There were times when my bad day turned into the club’s good night, because I was extra hard on people who didn’t act right while I was on duty.


That doesn’t have to be your situation. I share a lot of what I learned during speaking engagements, consultations, and in my book Rent-A-Cop Reboot. Trust me. Decide today to do what you can to stay healthy, because today’s decisions affect your tomorrows.

It's Party Time ... Sort Of

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June 22, 2021

Millions of people across the U.S. are getting out to enjoy the first full summer since vaccines seem to have COVID-19 against the ropes. But stay careful. The pandemic has still claimed more than 601,000 lives in the U.S., and counting.


If you do decide to go out, especially to a bar or club, don’t let your hair down so much that you wind up in a situation that requires security to react.


If you are a security professional, I want you to be extra careful working a club these days. A recent incident in a D.C. club shows you why, and inspired me to record this week's video (above). I don’t want to comment on how anyone not working for me does their job, but I do want to remind guards that professional is a valuable part of the phrase security professional. If you are dragging a woman down the stairs by her hair, a lot of things have gone wrong for someone who considers themselves a security professional.


When the woman was dragged down the stairs, reports state that it was a case of mistaken identity. That is more common than you may realize. I can’t count how times someone thought they had on a fresh, new outfit only to find at least one other person at the club wearing it. I’ve seen people go home because too many people were wearing the same thing they were. If you have to put your hands on someone, make sure it’s the right person.


Don’t drink on the job! You may be surprised by the number of times you are offered a free drink. You need to stay ready to handle the people out partying who have had too much to drink, or whatever.


You will see people act out of character. Some will be nice drinkers and others are mean drunks. When you need to get someone out, try talking them out first. I always say, and I repeated it in my book Rent-A-Cop Reboot, that your mouth is your best weapon. But only when you’re in your sober mind. Yes, there are times when talking someone out turns into taking them out. Taking a patron out of the club with a second guard is always your best move, because alcohol or whatever other drug they used may give the individual extraordinary strength. In most cases I’ve seen, the individual can’t feel any pain when you are breaking up a fight or defending your life.


This brings me back to one of my favorite subjects: training. Working in a club, or a club-like environment, can be tricky. It takes more than a strong body and what you know from working retail security.


Your club training should include mandatory time with a partner who is a seasoned club security officer. They may not wear a full uniform, but they are trained to be able to handle situations where they have to be hands-on with a member of the public. Well-trained club security professionals know how to handle the fast-paced, sometimes aggressive environment they may face. They are not only good at hand-to-hand combat and dealing with crowds, but they also know when and how to talk someone down.


The best club security professionals are always on their A game. They’re focused on making sure patrons are having a safe, good time. If you can’t do that, you can’t do the work. If you have a problem at home, don’t take it out on someone with “liquid courage” that gives them a Superman-like attitude.


The police are rarely called when alcohol is involved, unless a fight breaks out. Most clubs want to deal with the matter internally with things like banning an individual from the establishment. Your professionalism will make the difference in how everyone’s night turns out, so remember to treat others the way you would want to be treated. Always!

Father's Day Miracle

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June 8, 2021

I truly feel that living to see this upcoming Father’s Day, the second during the COVID-19 pandemic, is a miracle. In the video I briefly shared some of my reflections about the past year, especially my concerns about my daughter. Keeping her safe in all environments is my priority, as well as her mental health.


My wife and I were grateful for the remote learning that made it possible for us to be together while I underwent colon cancer treatment in New York, but it was hard for our daughter. We spent several weeks at a time away from our Virginia home, school friends became tiny boxes on a tablet screen, and daddy was very sick.


Even when chemotherapy had me down, my daughter was on my mind. We worked with our New York family members, who graciously opened their home to us, on ways to strengthen some of their security measures. But no lock could shut out the fear I saw many nights in my daughter’s eyes when she thought the cancer would kill me. I must admit that I sometimes thought the same thing.


My focus for the past year has been to reach another Father’s Day, and I’ve wanted to start the day holding my daughter and wife in my arms and say…. Well, if you haven’t already watched the video, check it out to hear me share the words of my recent dreams.


Are you a father who dreams of always keeping his family secure? I want to remind you to always remember some of the basics mentioned in Rent-A-Cop Reboot when you leave home: lock doors and windows, secure firearms if you own any, and check lights and alarm systems to make sure they are in working order.


In addition, be grateful for your family and everyone who helps you support them. In my case, that includes an amazing medical team, loving family members and friends, and skillful Leumas Security Services team members.


To all of you who “father” children, whether you are a biological father or not, Happy Father’s Day!

Self-Care

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June 1, 2021

What are you doing to take care of yourself? If you work closely with others, are you finding ways to show that you care about them, too?


Some experts say mental health issues and the pandemic may help explain how we wound up with two U.S. workplace shootings in as many months, the most recent taking place last week in San Jose. Like most people, I was shocked and saddened by the incident as well as the high number of mass shootings since the beginning of the year. And the tragic number continued to rise over the weekend when there was another deadly, mass shooting in Miami.


I couldn’t help but wonder if there are ways we can all take better care of ourselves, and our coworkers?


There were reports that the San Jose shooter hated his workplace, had a disciplinary meeting scheduled for that day, and had other problems. These reports filled my mind with many questions: Did this man feel supported enough to get help dealing with his anger? Did his coworkers recognize signs of his problems? If so, was there a way they could support him built into the employment system? Would an active shooter plan have made a difference the morning of the attack? Should we all be more aware of how to behave in active shooter situations as we get back into workplaces and public spaces that may attract someone with a problem and a gun?


How do you feel about your job? If you’re not happy, are you letting that feeling affect how you perform? Do you work with someone who hates the workplace, or is feeling emotional or financial pressures? Are those types of pressures affecting you? Do you know how to get help, or help someone else, in your workplace setting?


Reach out for help. It can be for professional mental health support, or guidance available from your human resources department. Take some time off. This is especially important if you are a private security professional who often spends long periods of time working alone, having to be the “bad guy” in a variety of settings. I offer the same advice to law enforcement, social services, and other professionals who tend to see a lot of people on their worst day.


Throughout Rent-A-Cop Reboot I remind security professionals about the benefits of sleep, good meals, exercise, and even wearing the right clothes. I also want you to know that it is OK to reach out for mental health support. It is not a sign of weakness. Only the strongest people have what it takes to take on their toughest opponent: themselves.

Take The Time, Do It Right.

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May 25, 2021

Sometimes, whether you want to or not, you have to take a step back. That can mean getting some sleep, taking some time off of work (use that hard-earned vacation time!), or pausing for a few seconds when you’re dealing with someone.


That pause may only last a few seconds, but it can be enough to de-escalate a tough situation. A disagreement with a loved one or coworker may end better if you take the time to slow things down. A security encounter can end better, too.


I have been saying for years, and have stressed in my book Rent-A-Cop Reboot and the April 27th blog post, that it is incredibly important for security and law enforcement professionals to know how to slow things down in ways that can help de-escalate a situation. I am passionate about this!


If you are a security guard, I understand that there can be times when you pause to decide how to handle a situation, and your decision gets negative feedback. During the COVID-19 era this can be especially difficult. You may also handle a situation fairly well, such as someone’s removal from a public place, and get hurt. The bottom line is you do a sometimes dangerous but incredibly valuable job. But I am convinced that the more you add de-escalation to your security training, the more likely you are to regularly make it home at the end of your shift.


In California, Assembly Bill 229 would add more de-escalation and other training for security guards there. A recent newspaper editorial supported the bill following a deadly encounter between an individual and private security, stating that “state laws require as little as 32 hours of training to get a license to be a security guard and eight hours a year afterward, and don’t require training on safely restraining people. That is unacceptable.” Some states require even less.


Start practicing de-escalation in all areas of your life. Do you often feel road rage or regularly drive aggressively? Do you have a short temper, or little patience when dealing with others? Try paying attention the next time you feel yourself flying into one of these states. Take a few long breaths. Ask yourself why the situation bothers you so much, and how much of it is in your control. What can you safely and responsibly do about the parts you can control?


Many security and law enforcement professionals face these challenges simply because they feel exhausted and overwhelmed. I really get it. You’re probably going to have to face this stuff at some point. Do it on the front end in terms of rest and training before you burn out, or you make a decision that costs you your career or your life. As the old song says, “Take the time, do it right.”

Commencement

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Sam & Imani NYC
Sam leaves Sloan Kettering


May 18, 2021

I like how commencement means both a beginning and an ending. This is the season for commencements across the U.S., which mark the start of a new life as well as the end of a period of academic achievement.


I am having a bit of a commencement experience myself. This is my first full week at home in Virginia after completing the intense, initial phase of cancer treatment in New York. This experience is even sweeter since it comes shortly before my 50th birthday, which I thought I might never see.


On March 13th, 2020, when the nation shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, my world went into a tailspin. As the pilot of my family, I braced my wife and our business for impact. There was no Standard Operating Procedure for handling a pandemic, and many companies seemed to have the motto of “everyone for themselves.” I understood. Many small businesses have closed, with Black-owned businesses being hardest hit by the pandemic's economic fallout. I didn’t want Leumas Security Services to completely shut down.


While we were implementing plans to survive COVID-19, I found myself not sleeping or eating. I was afraid that my nearly 30 years of being in business would soon end. We braced for impact, prayed, and counted on our experience to survive. Just as the tail spin was leveling out and we were completing my book Rent-A-Cop Reboot, I was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. I am a very private person, so I kept the diagnosis to myself for several months until I was convinced that sharing my experience could help someone else.


Helping others is what security work is really about, when it is done well. That is why I am so committed to it. It’s still a struggle to keep the business going since COVID and cancer, but I’ve learned a lot which I plan to keep in mind at the commencement of my next half century.


I’ve learned to slow down and rediscover the people and things that make me happy. I’m falling in love with my wife all over again. She has shared her pain while hanging tough throughout my recent scare. Strength is a very attractive trait for any man or woman to possess.


One of the greatest lessons of the first half century of my life came roaring back over the past year: don’t panic. As nervous as I became around this time last year, and when I found out about the cancer, I remembered that panic creates additional problems. Taking time to gather your thoughts helps you make better decisions and can help you reduce the levels of stress that raise blood pressure.


Most important, take care of the things (and people) that you do have as you dream of the things that you want. Sometimes that means making hard decisions, but decisions that have been my hardest to make have always been the best decisions I’ve made.


So, this season, what will you commence?

Security

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May 11, 2021

What do you think of when you hear the word security? Do you immediately get happy thoughts, or do you think of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, or the countless other Black lives that have been taken by law enforcement and made headlines? Our nation is locked in a period of soul-searching about how to deal with police and security professionals.


Security means being free from danger, risk, etc.; having a feeling of safety. Too many Americans don’t feel any of that when they come in contact with members of law enforcement. How can we change that?


Law enforcement and private security professionals can start the healing with the basics: respect, and standard operating procedures (SOPs). Respect comes first. Simply saying things like “Yes sir” and “No ma’am” goes a very long way, even if you don’t think the person you’re speaking with deserves it. You may not always agree with this, but a professional, respectful, humble approach can often slow things down enough to give everyone involved a little more time to think about what they’re doing.


I understand that there are times when you have to do what you have to do. Working beside law enforcement for nearly 30 years, I’ve seen a lot of law enforcement-civilian interactions and ways they can end. In the best situations the result is respect given is respect received. Like everyone, law enforcement and security professionals don’t always leave their problems at home. In Rent-A-Cop Reboot we talk about a variety of ways you can take care of yourself so you can be in physical, mental, and emotional shape to better serve and protect the public.


Better policies could also help law enforcement professionals and the public. It may be time for national law enforcement SOPs. Having national standards that get all law enforcement officers on the same page with regard to things like de-escalation training, for example, can help in many situations that now end with police shootings. And they don’t just shoot Black people. The system is simply broken, and too many cases keep eating away at the public trust. How many more shootings must we endure before police policies change?


In the meantime, how can everyone feel more secure when approached by a law enforcement or security professional? You can also start with respect. The best law enforcement and security professionals approach you thinking, “Help me help you.” Do your best to calmly interact with the officer.


Up next, your vehicle. Operate it safely, and have a video security system installed. This will allow you to be hands-free when dealing with an officer, and it can record what happens. If you are concerned about being pulled out of your vehicle, purchase a body camera to be place on your person. If you want something a little less noticeable, get a button camera to be placed on your button down shirt.


Always have identification on you. When you are operating a vehicle, have your license, registration, and insurance information readily available. Only reach for your credentials when the officer tells you to. Tell the officers where you placed your items before reaching for anything. Remember, having a video recording security system in your vehicle gives you evidence of you obeying the commands of the officer. Video cameras installed in vehicles can typically capture front, rear, and interior activity. People tend to behave differently when they know they are being recorded. Unfortunately, we all know that is not always the case.

Another COVID Mother's Day

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Baby Bella
Sam & Imani 2021


May 4, 2021

Are you making plans for Mother’s Day? It’s this Sunday, May 9th. It’s the second Mother’s Day since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. In case you’re starting to ease up your pandemic practices, don’t.


Travel restrictions on people traveling to the U.S. from India started today, and other international travel restrictions are still in place. Check local and CDC advice if you’re hoping to travel within the U.S. for Mother’s Day, a graduation, or any other special occasion in the coming weeks. Even if you have already been vaccinated keep wearing your mask, washing your hands, and maintaining physical distance. That’s especially important for people like security professionals and others who work with the public.


As for my Mother’s Day plans, I look forward to finding a way to show my mother and my wife how much I appreciate them.


I am incredibly grateful to be able to share this Mother’s Day with my wife. She is my partner in business, parenting, and life. My wife has suffered the losses of loved ones since last year, supported me through the loss of my grandmother last month, and she has been my rock through my cancer diagnosis and treatment.


My last liver pump chemotherapy treatment was last week, and I should be finished with my systemic chemo treatment in a couple of weeks. This does not mean that I am cancer-free. I will be carefully monitored for the next three years, and I remain faithful that by the end of that period I can claim the victory over the cancer that affected my liver and colon.


I hope the progress we have made so far in this cancer journey means less pain. Have you, or anyone you know, ever been through cancer treatment? It can be brutal.


I am being treated, but my wife and daughter are also going through it. We have had to deal with travel and staying near the hospital many miles away from home. During chemo treatment, I went through long periods when I couldn’t eat or drink, and I found myself in urgent care several times.


The physical pain became mental pain as I watched my daughter watch me. After hearing about the deaths of other family members, she asked me, “Daddy are you gonna die?” She would lay on my chest, rub my hair, and whisper, “Fight daddy.” Her 6-year old attention wasn’t as involved in virtual schooling as she was in live loving from a daddy she was afraid she would lose.


Through it all, my wife Imani was our spiritual warrior. She prayed over us every day, and worked to remain positive during our darkest hours. Now, as we are starting to see the light, I see even more why I love her.


I hope you have a woman in your life who has embodied the powerful love, spirit, and strength of motherhood and poured it into your life. Even if you can’t be with her or buy a fancy gift this Mother’s Day, find a way to let her know you appreciate her.

De-escalation

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April 27, 2021

In Columbus, Ohio, residents are wondering how a police shooting of an unarmed man in December failed to offer lessons that may have helped to prevent another officer shooting an African American teenager last week.


The shooting of that teen, Ma’Khia Bryant, and Andrew Brown, Jr. in North Carolina, are two of the latest incidents that call into question the need for much more cultural sensitivity and de-escalation training for police officers and security professionals.


De-escalation practices are designed to slow things down enough to help keep everyone safe during a law enforcement or security encounter. De-escalation can be part of a well-rounded and effective use-of-force policy. Baltimore and Seattle are among more than 150 U.S. cities that include de-escalation in their training and policies, but there are thousands of law enforcement departments and private security firms across the nation.


I have been advocating de-escalation for many years, encouraging security professionals to start with their mouths. In Rent-A-Cop Reboot, I wrote about this. As I said in the book, I don’t want to second-guess someone’s actions when they are performing their security duties. However, there are too many instances where African Americans and other people of color see white individuals arrested in situations where African Americans have been shot. Too often, killed.


If you are a law enforcement or security professional, get de-escalation training. If it’s not offered by your employer, ask for it, or find a responsible organization that offers training you can take.


I know de-escalation can call for behavior that may feel like the opposite of what you may have been taught — like trying to talk someone down, reaching for your taser faster than your gun, or backing away while talking to someone who is holding a knife — but I am here to tell you that I am here because of situations where I de-escalated the situation. I usually did it just by talking to the person.


If you are not in law enforcement or security, contact your local police department and ask if they offer de-escalation training. They may need you to contact elected officials and support funding for this purpose, or to increase mental health supports for everyone in the community who needs it. That includes police officers.


Let’s get through this spring without another tragic police or mass shooting for any reason. At least that’s what I’m praying for. How about you?

Chauvin Verdict: Thinking About Whatever Comes Next

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Chauvin

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Image: Minnesota Department of Corrections/CNN.com


April 21, 2021

No matter what comes next for convicted, former police officer Derek Chauvin and the other officers who worked with him the day George Floyd died, I am thinking about what comes next for the law enforcement officers and security professionals who work hard to do the right thing every day.


If you are one of those professionals, I want to encourage you to make sure you get the well-rounded training you need and deserve. But let me remind you that training won’t work if your heart and mind are not in the right place. Make sure you get the support you need to be mentally, physically, and spiritually fit to do the important work that you do.


The jury came to the right decision in Chauvin’s case. Make sure you make the right decisions so that you, and those you work with, do not wind up associated with a tragedy like that team of police officers did.

Handling Fear

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Handling Fear

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April 20, 2021


Recent events that have made headlines got me thinking about fear among law enforcement and security professionals, and almost everyone in the U.S.


How much of what I call “bad fear” ran through the Chicago police officer who shot Adam Toledo? How much regular fear did the 13-year old feel before he was killed? How much regular fear was felt by everyone in Indianapolis last week, when Brandon Hole attacked the FedEx facility there?


How much more fear must we as a nation feel before we agree to work together on the many issues that create situations that end badly after someone has discharged a firearm?


I believe in the lawful, appropriately-regulated and trained ownership and operation of a firearm. What I do not believe in is allowing the fear that fuels too much firearm use to continue unchecked, and the “bad fear” is the worst.


As I wrote in Rent-A-Cop Reboot, bad fear is most likely the result of bad training. We have seen police training questioned in recent weeks like never before. And rightfully so. I hope security professionals of all types, armed and unarmed, are getting the message about the importance of being well trained.


If you are a security or law enforcement professional, it is clear that you cannot simply rely on the training your department or company provides. Find additional opportunities to stay sharp, and not just with your weapon. Be as physically fit as possible. Stay well rested. Have your eyesight and hearing checked. Think long and hard about ways you may be judging those who are not like you, and their difference possibly being connected to your built-in fear of them. Some of this may be so deep-seated that you didn’t know it was there. Find it and root it out.


I think it is also important to find something to believe in that is greater than yourself and let that faith support you. No matter who you are and what you are afraid of, sometimes faith is your best weapon against it.

Louella Griffin Johnson

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Louella Griffin Johnson

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April 16, 2021


During a break in chemotherapy treatments last month, I squeezed in a visit with my grandmother. Grandma Griffin, as I called her most of my life, was a kind and humble woman who always greeted me with a kiss on my lips. No matter how hard I tried to avoid those juicy kisses, eventually I would lean in and greet my grandmother with a smile.


I am Louella Griffin Johnson’s oldest grandchild, but I didn't have my own child until my grandmother turned 90 years old. Grandma Griffin attended my daughter’s first birthday celebration, which will always be a special moment in our lives.


On April 6th, my beloved Grandma Griffin was called to glory. My last living grandparent quietly passed away at her home in Chesapeake, Virginia at the age of 96, leaving a host of grandchildren and great-grandchildren to continue her legacy.


Her love helps inspire me as I continue battling stage IV colon cancer. In my fight against cancer, as in my work as a business owner and author, my strong foundation came from people like Grandma Griffin who came before me. I learned to fight with everything within me to win while never losing sight of my faith and my family.


We lay Grandma Griffin to rest tomorrow, but I know her strength is still alive in me. Thank you Grandma for your wisdom, and your shining example of how to get the most out of life. Until we meet again, know that I love and adore you.

Stay Sharp

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April 13, 2021


It can seem like a pain to do it, but you will be much more effective as a security or law enforcement professional if you keep your skills sharp. The best way to do that is to keep training. Police officer training has been in the news over the past week, with most headlines being about the murder trial of former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin. He is accused of killing George Floyd last May by holding his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes.


Last week I talked about personal care such as getting enough exercise, sleep, and showers to help you remain personally fit enough to make the best decisions possible while you’re on the job. However, those habits won’t mean anything if you are not practicing professional care.


Professional care means doing things like making sure your training is up to date, and your certifications stay current. For example, when was the last time you checked the expiration date on your security or firearm license? Do you need to take any special courses before the expiration date? Are those courses available? Since the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, many courses have switched to virtual platforms. If you have never taken an online course, you may need to make sure you have the equipment and internet access to participate.


Some programs cannot be completely delivered entirely online. If you need to take a course like this, such as for a firearm endorsement or first aid certificate, check the training location’s pandemic protocols. With concerns about reports of increasing COVID cases in many parts of the country, you could face cleaning, distancing, and mask-wearing practices that may limit class sizes. As a result, you may find it harder to get into a class that is scheduled at a time that works best for you.


My book Rent-A-Cop Reboot has a lot of tips about personal and professional care, as well as exercises to help you think about your future in security or law enforcement. Make time now to invest in your career. Good habits I learned and developed over my many years as a security professional are serving me today as I battle colon cancer. As I always say, today’s decisions affect your tomorrows.

Take Care Of Yourself

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Trees starting to bloom
Bella fishing


April 6, 2021


It’s really true. You have nothing if you don’t have your health. I hate that I’ve had to be so focused on my health in recent months. My treatment for stage IV colon cancer has been tough, as I’ve been saying in recent blog posts and on Instagram, but my life is worth saving. Is yours?


As an African-American entrepreneur, husband, and father I always had a lot of situations, projects and people on my mind. I know now that I should have been one of my priorities. I rarely stopped to think that if I didn’t take good care of myself, everything else that depends on me could crumble. And I thought I was doing pretty well at keeping myself healthy!


If you’re a person of color, this is National Minority Health Month. Take this opportunity to get or schedule any regular check-ups that you’ve been putting off. If you are not a person of color, I hope this inspires you to do the same thing. If you discover a health problem, let your family and friends know. It took me a while to talk about my cancer. I think I needed that time to wrap my mind around it. The love and support I have felt since I opened up have helped me keep going.


I’ve learned that sharing what you’re going through when times get tough is a way of taking care of yourself.


In Rent-A-Cop Reboot I wrote about a few basic ways of taking care of yourself that too many security professionals often skip. Here are a few:


Sleep. You may not always be able to get a full 8 hours of sleep each night, but you will feel and function much better if you try. I know there are a lot of security guards, especially younger ones, who think getting in the extra time hanging out with friends is important. It is, but you can do that when you have the following day off.


Exercise. Many security guards have to stand and walk a lot, and think that is enough exercise. However, if you want to stay at the top of your game, add additional exercise that will round out your fitness routine. For example, if you regularly do a lot of walking add some muscle-building work with weights or resistance bands; if you sit at a desk, start with some cardiovascular exercise. Talk to your medical care provider before you begin any additional exercising.


Eat healthy meals. I remember the days of running from one security assignment to the next, chewing on a sandwich from a fast-food restaurant while driving. It happens. Don’t make it your regular way of eating. Make time for a healthy, well-balanced meal as often as you can. It may help to prepare healthy, portable meals at home and invest in a few key items that you can store and carry them in.


Take a shower or bath before your work day begins. Even if your “day” is overnight, shower or bathe before you head out. A great shower can be energizing, and you will feel and smell good in ways that contribute to your professional presence.


When you take care of yourself, you are in a much better position to take care of everything and everyone you are responsible for. When health challenges hit, you are in a much better position to hit back.

Faith Vs. Fear

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March 30, 2021


This Holy Week means more to me than ever. It’s the most sacred week of the year because it is a time rich with symbolism, sadness, and joy for Christians like me around the world. Maybe someday I’ll spend this special time they call Semana Santa in Mexico with my family.


Yes, I have had times when the pain, exhaustion, and nausea of my cancer treatment made me afraid to think about the future. What if I don’t have much of one? What if my family has to go on without me? My daughter is still young. How much will she remember? Will she read Rent-A-Cop Reboot and be able to tell her friends how much we laughed together when I told her the entire version of one of the stories I shared in the book?


Despite the fear, my faith and my family have kept me going through these challenging weeks of surgery and chemotherapy. National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month will end tomorrow, but my colon cancer journey will continue. It’s a blessing that I’m not going through it alone. I am especially grateful for the family members and friends who created a GoFundMe account to help us handle the crushing costs of cancer treatment.


I hope you’re not dealing with a health challenge that is potentially life-threatening. But if you are, or know someone who is, join me tonight at 7:00 p.m. ET on Instagram Live as I wrap-up this month of posts devoted to colorectal cancer awareness. I’m doing it with an energy I want to encourage you to have: using faith against the fear.


I’m a Christian, but I don’t mean faith in a strict, religious sense. Join me tonight on Instagram Live with whatever fuels your faith in your ability to beat cancer, some other health challenge, or even the pandemic and any problems it caused in your life. When it comes to faith versus fear, I’ll take faith every time.

Put A Little "Spring" In Your Step

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March 23, 2021


Spring and Daylight Saving Time are here, at least for most of the U.S., and I am very happy about that. That means regular days of warmth and sunshine are coming, and I really need them to help me get energized. How about you? I was able to get out a few days ago with my trusted walking stick, but you can tell by the look on my face that it was a bit of a struggle. Join me March 30th at 7:00 p.m. ET for an Instagram Live conversation about how I’m handling my cancer journey.


Despite the struggles, I am enjoying watching the seasons change as I make monthly trips between New York and Virginia with my wife and daughter. The trips are for my chemotherapy treatments. They’re brutal, but my wife is always close by to help with anything I need. She is helping me follow my doctor’s most important instructions about ways to build strength between treatments: drink more water and eat more food. I try, but during the week of chemo treatments I don’t feel like eating. As a result, my treatments now include hydration because the lack of nourishment leaves me with very low energy.


Watching my daughter strengthens me. I don’t like seeing the fear in her young face when she thinks she may get too far from her very sick daddy. She sometimes thinks a comment such as “Daddy has to go bye bye,” referring to me going to the store, refers to me dying. We have lost family members and friends to cancer recently, so she may be afraid her daddy is next.


Am I? Welcome to the psychological torment of being a stage IV cancer patient. Every day I’m in the fight of my life. I thank God that I have people around me who have survived cancer. They understand what's involved with chemotherapy treatment and the psychological impact of dealing with cancer. They are making an incredible difference in my life as I get my emotional footing.


My colon cancer diagnosis isn’t the end, but it’s the beginning of explaining to others the importance of getting your health checked out. Make sure that you get those routine yearly exams. Don’t skip them as I did. If it wasn’t for a constant stomach ache my diagnosis would have been a lot worse. I now pray that God keeps those I love healthy, strong, and able to receive necessary medical care.


I also want you to get out and enjoy the additional daylight with those you love. Make sure you do it safely. Did you notice my walking stick? It supports me, but I can also use it to protect myself. I have cancer, but it doesn’t have me. My security-mindedness has not missed a step. If you take regular walks have additional routes, like I suggest in Rent-A-Cop Reboot that you have alternate driving routes.


I’d love for you to join me for a “live” conversation about the challenges and blessings of running our security business while on this cancer journey. And doing it all during a pandemic! Are you dealing with the physical and/or emotional pain of dealing with cancer, yours or your loved one’s? Is your health problem a problem for your business? Are you interested in moving up in your career, security (take our quick assessment!) or something else, and need some ideas about how to plan ahead toward an uncertain future? Join me on March 30th at 7:00 p.m. ET on Instagram Live.


In the meantime, be grateful for those who are precious to you, respectful of people who come in contact with you, and truthful about aspects of your life that no longer serve you.

The Pain Of The Process

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March 16, 2021


“Most of us are taught that, at some point in life, you will try to achieve something that you will not achieve without experiencing some level of pain,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “I’m here to tell you to make peace with that concept, because it is absolutely true throughout your life.


“I’m sure that you have started a fitness or educational program in the past,” he says, “and you were hit by the physical pain, mental stress, or both while going through the process. How about the stress of slowly moving out of the deadly pandemic we’ve been living with for a year? Knowing how long it will take to reach a particular goal may not matter when the pain point hits. It hits and wow!


“That’s where I am now with the chemotherapy to address my colon cancer. I can taste the chemo medication when it goes into my body, and that terrible taste may last for a couple of days. Speaking of terrible, that’s how all real food tastes to me, and even water tastes horrible. My wife and aunt have been adding fruit to water to help me get it down. Smells can hit me even harder, with certain ones triggering a gag reflex. I recently visited someone’s home, and their air freshener made me vomit.


“The video I’m sharing with this post is to let you know that I am serious about being transparent when it comes to this cancer-fighting process,” says Griffin, who is also the author of Rent-A-Cop Reboot. “I want you to know that the discomfort of getting screened for colorectal cancer is nothing compared to this, so get screened.


“I also want you to remember that ‘no pain, no gain’ may be an exaggeration, but you must stretch beyond your comfort zone to get the most out of life. Sometimes that will hurt. The victory at the end is almost always worth the pain, so I’m keeping that in mind,” Griffin says.


“How about you? What are you willing to go through to get to the life you want?”

Cancer Can't Stop Security-Mindedness

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Lady w/baby and car trouble
Griffin working in NYC


March 9, 2021


“Running a successful business is challenging under the best of circumstances,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “Now I know how much those challenges increase when you are receiving chemotherapy and dealing with its side effects. Maybe you, or someone you know, has had a major health problem while running a business or working. I don’t have enough words to describe how hard it is.


“I can, however, share what I know about feeling secure while surviving this incredibly challenging time,” says Griffin. “First of all, be grateful for those who support you. I thank God every day for my wife and daughter. My wife helps me get through my darkest days, and my daughter is the joy of my very existence.


“The second thing for business owners, is to have a good set of standard operating procedures (SOP),” he says. “With these in place, the business can run more smoothly even if you are out of position for a while.


“Third, you must have a Plan B. I talk about this all the time, whether you are a business owner or not. Having a backup plan in place is a way of keeping yourself secure if something goes wrong, because things go wrong all the time. Like they did for me a few days ago.


"I have often been in New York City over the past four months for colon cancer treatment, and have been reminded of the line from the old song about if you can make it here you can make it anywhere. I am staying with family, but I often go out alone and figure things out as I go. While rushing to my doctor’s appointment I hit a pothole that had to be the size of a small child’s swimming pool. Bam! Seconds later, I felt the wobble. I had to get over to the shoulder during morning rush hour to handle the flat tire. Fortunately, I have a service that helps me handle these types of emergencies. I was not happy, but I did not have to single-handedly manage my vehicle situation and my health challenge.


“In Rent-A-Cop Reboot, I talk about the importance of vehicle maintenance, having a Plan B for situations like this, and generally changing your thinking about security. The book is definitely for security professionals, but it’s filled with easy to digest information for anyone who wants to keep themselves and those they care about safe, as well as career-switchers.


“Cancer is not going to keep me from speaking with as many people as possible about security for everyday life. My purpose is to reboot your thought process so that you are empowered to keep yourself and your loved ones safe,” Griffin says.


Here are some of Griffin’s best practices that his pothole experience brought to mind:

  • Maintain your vehicle. This means filling the gas tank and so much more. Check out this extensive list of practices that can keep your vehicle in operation, and make time to go through the owner’s manual.
  • Have a roadside assistance service. Even a vehicle in top condition can be taken out of service by a pothole, or an accident. A vehicle breakdown can compromise your safety in several ways. You want to limit the amount of time you spend dealing with a vehicle that is not functioning, especially if you are alone at night in an unfamiliar location. If you don’t have a service, dial 911 and be prepared to pay for a towing company.
  • Pull over properly. Once you know you have to get off the road, immediately put on the appropriate blinker or your flashers. Carefully pull into an area where you can park, or to the shoulder. When using the shoulder, pull as far as possible away from the nearest traffic lane. Position your vehicle so that you (and any passengers) can safely exit, if necessary.
  • Have more than one route home. Have at least three different ways to get home from anywhere you usually travel. That may be work, school, or the grocery store. This will make it safer and easier for you to get home in case an accident, weather, or other situation blocks your usual route. In addition, changing your route may help you determine if you’re being followed. Stalking can happen to anyone for any number of reasons.
  • Light things up. Make sure your home has a well lit entryway, which includes the garage if you have one. If you regularly use a back or side entrance, make sure it is well lit. If you do not want every entrance constantly lit, consider installing motion sensing security lights. Don’t forget to inspect indoor areas for lighting needs, such as stairs and hallways. More people may be living in intergenerational households because of the pandemic. Keep in mind that additional lighting may help people who are unfamiliar with your home, especially elders and young children, stay safe.

He Said To Me, "You Have Cancer."

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Griffin's chemo treatment

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March 2, 2021


“On October 19, 2020, I self-published Rent-A-Cop Reboot, and I had a colonoscopy,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “After my procedure, the nurse said the doctor had asked my wife and daughter to come into the hospital. Alarm bells went off in my head. I had arranged for my family to meet me outside because of COVID-19.


“After my wife arrived, the doctor blurted out, ‘We found a mass in your colon, and you have cancer.’ I was completely dumbfounded. I said, ‘Are you serious?!’ He said yes, and spoke to me as if he had been asked if he had a pen. Had they become numb from giving patients bad news?


“Thirty days later, the mass in my colon was removed, and it was confirmed. I had colon cancer. Shortly after that, I found out that the cancer had spread to my liver, and it was at Stage 4.


“As the diagnosis set in, I found myself experiencing waves of various emotions, including fear. Thankfully, my business experience had already kicked in. I have always believed in having a Plan B, and suggest that other entrepreneurs have one. Add a Plan C, too.


“My Plan B thinking prompted me to contact my cousin who works at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center when the cancer was first suspected. I wound up being blessed with the opportunity to have my treatment begin at Sloan Kettering in early February, which includes chemotherapy.


“Dealing with the pain of this personal experience, the demands of the business, the news of racial inequity and political unrest, and balancing it all during the pandemic has been horrible. I admit it. I have had days of grief, fear, and hopelessness. But I also have faith. I thank God every day for my wife and daughter, my extended family, and my health care providers, as well as my Leumas Security team and clients.


“I was encouraged to talk about my situation this month by a member of my team. March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. I want to add my voice to the voices of those who love actor Chadwick Boseman in reminding people to get screened for colorectal cancer. Boseman, who won a Best Actor Golden Globe Award this past Sunday, lost his battle with colon cancer last August.


“The American Cancer Society recommends that if you are at average risk of getting colorectal cancer you should begin screening at age 45. Talk to your doctor about the age when you should begin screening if you have risk factors such as a family history of colorectal cancer, are African American, or are Jewish of Eastern European descent (Ashkenazi Jews).


“Talk to your friends and family about getting screened,” says Griffin. “It’s a way of showing that you care about them. The screening process can be uncomfortable, but I want you to know that the process is definitely worth it.”

Come Too Far To Give Up Now

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Griffin with Jackson and Henderson

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February 23, 2021


“I know you’re tired of the pandemic, maybe add weather and personal challenges, and you’re probably feeling a little overwhelmed,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “I have felt that, too. I keep reminding myself that words have power, no matter what those words are. They are like seeds, and they produce what you planted.


“Here’s a tip that will help you feel more secure: Dig up the words of overwhelm that you’re telling yourself, dig them up from their roots, and replant faith, hope, and energy. I was happy to find this picture of myself with two of the men who helped drive that message home for me: Mr. Henderson, my high school shop teacher, and the Reverend Jesse Jackson.


“I’m sure you woke up today thinking about ways to move your life forward, so I want you to know that you are doing an awesome job,” he says. “It’s time for our breakthrough. The moment to define ourselves is here. This is it!


“Faith is what has been keeping me going,” says Griffin, who is also the author of Rent-A-Cop Reboot. “People are always watching what you do, but I am only concerned about how my words and actions will please Jesus. I keep my eyes on the prize, and I trust that the rest will be shown unto me.


“I also find it helpful to check out what other people are saying about moving beyond life’s challenges. Actor Russell Brand’s openness about self-sabotage is thought-provoking, and Michael Beckwith’s message about the grace that can come from darkness is inspiring.


“How are you renewing your faith, especially if COVID-19 is keeping you away from your family and friends? I know it can be difficult, or seem impossible. Find ways to reboot your life during this time. Recharge your inner artist, helpful neighbor, or home repair professional. It will be faith in action, the best kind.


“This has been a period of highs and lows for me, too,” Griffin says. “I have been blessed with the ability to keep my company going and publishing Rent-A-Cop Reboot. However, I have also faced losing loved ones and a serious health issue (more on the health issue next week). Through all of this I am sure that I, and you, have come too far to give up now! The hardest time of your life can help you realize that the human mind and spirit are much stronger than we often think.”

Making History Every Day

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Griffin and Mae Jemison

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February 16, 2021


“When I presented the flowers to Mae Jemison she was so humble and kind that she could have been one of my aunts,” remembers Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “I appreciate the fact that I had the opportunity to thank the first African-American woman astronaut for her service to our nation, and I heard about taking a trip into space from someone who actually did it.”


Griffin says that even more important was the lesson Dr. Jemison gave him without saying a word.


“Some people wear their power and success like a cape floating on their shoulders,” Griffin says, “but not Mae Jemison. If anything, she showed me that success doesn’t always have to be talked about. You let your actions speak for themselves.”


Griffin says countless women have let their inspiring actions speak for themselves, but history will record few of their names. Do you know the name of a woman who has made a difference in your life, or the life of your community? Is there a way to show her your appreciation?


“Finding this picture of myself with Mae Jemison, during Black History Month, reminded me of the Black women I’ve looked up to,” says Griffin.


“I remember the late dinners at my grandma’s house when I was around five-years old,” he says. “They still ring in my head because my grandmother took care of us when my mom had to work late at times when my father was not around to help support us.


“The feeling of loneliness would settle in due to the insecurities of having a mother who worked a lot and a father who showed up from time to time. Too often when our father did show up, there was violence. I would huddle with my little brother and hold him tight. I secured him the best way I could at five-years old. Even at that age it broke my heart every day knowing that I was not big enough to help my mom. I was in agony, ashamed, embarrassed.


“This Black History Month I want to recognize my grandmother, Hilda Mae Jones, and my mom, Jacqueline Griffin-Allmond. These women inspired me, and they never tried to destroy my dreams or my goals. All dreams must be watered. Sometimes all it takes is a drop of hope and a sprinkle of faith. My mom and grandmother did that for me, and they did so much more.


“Too many families like ours, and certainly not just Black ones, are still suffering in silence,” Griffin says. “They want to keep their problems private. But those become secrets that could cost someone their life, or break their spirit. If you’re in a family like that I encourage you to share your fears. Get help to change your current circumstances. Every day you have an opportunity to make a decision that could change a family history of violence and neglect.


“In my book Rent-A-Cop Reboot are things I learned as I went from being big enough to keep people safe, to being smart enough to help people learn how to keep themselves safe. The book includes some of what I learned about handling fear in ways that don’t derail your dreams. I recently had the pleasure of discussing that with Dr. Jane Lovas on her Leadership Re-Imagined podcast.


“You can find healthy ways to face your fears, handle whatever the pandemic dishes out, and make smart decisions today that affect your tomorrows,” says Griffin.

Facing The Forecast

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Slick streets

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February 9, 2021


Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, which has now claimed the life of a sitting Member of Congress, millions of people across the U.S. must leave their homes every day for work. If you’re one of them, thank you for providing an essential service, and we encourage you to follow COVID-19 safety protocols and make time for self-care.


“Self-care includes security-mindedness, which is about more than private guards, law enforcement, or alarm systems,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin. “Security is also a way of thinking that helps anyone live the life they want.”


In addition to sharing information to help security professionals build rewarding careers, in the book Rent-A-Cop Reboot Griffin also reminds anyone working hard to become successful to think about things that may affect their security, like the weather.


“I can’t tell you the number of times when I was thankful that I paid attention to the weather forecast, especially when I worked in areas that were hit by snow and ice,” he says.


Over the last few days, winter weather conditions across large parts of the United States have proven to be very challenging. For example, yesterday’s crashes in the Oklahoma City area.


Below are a few of Griffin’s favorite things to “check” when you have to head out in winter weather.

  • Check the full forecast. “Remember that checking what the temperature will be for a specific day or evening is not enough. Make sure you know the forecast for the entire time that you plan to be away from home. The prediction may be for a 50-degree day, but your shift may begin when the temperature is 20 degrees colder. That may mean taking additional clothing and allowing time for your vehicle to warm up.”
  • Check your vehicle. “Is your vehicle ready for winter? Make sure it is properly maintained, you know how to drive it in wintry weather, and you know what to do when something goes wrong.”
  • Check other transportation sources. “Do you get to work using public transportation, a taxi cab, a ride share service, or even ride with others? Make sure you have access to your ride. Check bad weather policies before bad weather strikes. Have a backup plan, even if you normally drive, and be ready to walk farther than you normally would to connect with your backup ride.”
  • Check your clothes. “Are you wearing the right footwear? A good pair of work shoes and separate winter weather boots are worth their weight in gold! The same is true for the right coat or jacket, gloves, and head coverings.”
  • Check your timing. “Don’t wait until the day of your shift to consider the weather. You should know the basic winter forecast at least three days in advance. Give yourself enough time to check your vehicle and clothing, put any backup plan in place, and get any additional supplies you may need.”

Black History Month

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February 2, 2021


“As Black History Month begins this year, I find myself being grateful for lessons I have learned directly from African-Americans who have helped shape the world,” says Leumas Security Services founder Samuel Griffin III.


“At a time when racial injustice, political disagreements, and the COVID-19 pandemic are in the news every day, it comforts me to remember leaders who took the time to share their humanity and wisdom with me,” says Griffin, who is also the author of Rent-A-Cop Reboot.


Former ambassador Andrew Young and Dr. Bernice King immediately come to mind for Griffin.


“Early in my career I traveled to Atlanta, Georgia, on countless occasions,” he remembers. “I regularly met many local and national leaders, and Andrew Young was one of them. He always treated me with dignity and respect. It wasn't until later in life that I truly understood who he really was. After all he has accomplished - in the Civil Rights Movement, as an ambassador, mayor, congressman - he was humble, and I always saw him treat others the way he would want to be treated. I have done my best to live that way ever since.


“Meeting Dr. Bernice King was a moment I will cherish for the rest of my life,” says Griffin, whose photo with Dr. King is above. “I had the honor of escorting the youngest daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. several years ago. When dropping her off at the airport for departure she actually tried to tip me. I declined and told her to have a safe trip home.


After working for Reverend Jesse Jackson (that’s my back in the TAR photo of Rev. Jackson), and later serving as part of a security detail protecting Bernice King, I was continually motivated to remember something very important: dreams don’t happen overnight. They may take many years to achieve, but as Reverend Jackson famously says, “Keep hope alive.”

Is It Time For Recertification?

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January 26, 2021


If you have certifications that must be maintained for work, the start of a new year is a good time to check the renewal dates. We think that is especially important for security professionals.


“In Virginia, recertification comes around every other year for armed and unarmed officers as well as security companies,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “If you are outside of Virginia, do you know the recertification schedule in the areas where you work?”


He says that “making sure your certification doesn’t lapse is critical. An expired certification could cost a business its contracts, or an individual can lose work.”


Maintaining certification is in Griffin’s book Rent-A-Cop Reboot as one of the ways security professionals can get the most out of their work, whether they are doing it temporarily or building a career.


“The book has worksheets that help you dig into your ‘why,’ think about your goals, and create a plan that will help you reach them,” he says. “If being a business owner is one of your goals, even if it’s not in security, Rent-A-Cop Reboot includes information that will help shape your thinking. For example, do you own a rental property that can be a source of income through a tough time? Great! Remember to pay the taxes on it. And never forget the importance of maintaining good credit.”


Griffin also says maintaining your health must be a top priority. “I know you are an essential worker. Make sure your state health department’s COVID-19 protocols do, too,” he says. “Find out when and how you can get the vaccine, keep wearing your mask and washing your hands, and do your best to maintain your distance from people who are outside of your ‘bubble.’ We must slow the spread of the virus.”


The virus is one of any number of reasons why “you might have a career shift,” Griffin says. “Whatever you do, please stay focused on your dream. Stay on track. Love that dream into becoming your reality. Be blessed!”

The New Normal

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Nw Yorker/MSNBC video of 1/6/21

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January 19, 2021


The New Normal is here, and it’s not what most of us hoped for. There are unprecedented levels of security at the U.S. Capitol and state capitols ahead of tomorrow’s inauguration of President-Elect Joe Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris.


“This is because of the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol, and the sense of entitlement and support those people felt,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “There are a lot more people who think like those attackers than we may ever know, so we need to be clear about that. And we must be prepared for them to act out in ways that are great and small.”


Above is a still from video captured by The New Yorker, shared in an MSNBC report, that shows more activities from members of the mob that broke into the U.S. Capitol.


He says, “Security is going to be a more significant part of everyone’s life from now on. You have to do things to protect your vehicle, your home, and your physical person. It can’t be something that you do just once. Do it consistently.”


In his book Rent-A-Cop Reboot, Griffin encourages those who are new to, or considering, a private security career to change their thinking about security. Now, he reminds everyone to do that.


“We all have to go 100% back to the basics,” he says. Griffin’s basics include:

  • Traveling in pairs, at least. “People who would do things that you fear, like attack or rob you, have their own fears. They don’t want to face more people than they think they can handle, and they are afraid of a witness.”
  • Having alarm systems. “Your home and vehicle should have security systems. If you can, make sure those systems include cameras. Personal alarms are also very helpful.”
  • Lighting the way. “Make sure your home is well lit, inside and out. Good lighting does more than discourage someone who might consider illegally entering your home. People are often injured inside or outside of their homes simply because they could not see clearly.”
  • Staying focused. “Use your good sense, and all of your senses. Look around areas where you drive, park, and walk. Don’t run or any other form of exercise with music so loud in your ears that you can’t hear what’s going on around you. Stay tuned in to where you are and what you are doing, not to your phone or arms overloaded with stuff. This is especially important in public areas at night. If an area does not feel safe, trust your gut.”
  • Driving wisely. “Everywhere you go, you should have at least 3 different ways of getting between there and home. Even if every route is free and clear, you could accidentally upset a driver who is having a bad day and need one of your backup routes while you call for help. Plus, make sure your vehicle is well maintained. You don’t want it to break down or run out of gas in an unsafe location, or at some other time when you are counting on it.”

To Griffin, it “makes sense to invest in your everyday security. That investment may be with money, time, behavior, or all three.”


Staying secure in the New Normal also includes continuing to wear masks, social distance, and regularly wash your hands in order to control the spread of COVID-19. This is the reality even with the vaccine slowly rolling out across the U.S., and some experts feeling hopeful as the number of cases declines in some areas.


“I also feel hopeful,” says Griffin, “but there’s an old saying that tells us to hope for the best, but plan for the worst.”

Security Breach

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Mob in US Capitol

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January 12, 2021


As the FBI warns about new threats of violent protests around the nation, the U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote tomorrow to impeach President Donald Trump. House Democratic leaders say it is for the role he played in inciting the January 6th mob action against the U.S. Capitol (seen in CNN video still above). A majority of Americans say the president should be removed from office before his term expires on January 20th, and his job approval rating has dropped by a dramatic 11 percentage points.


Security experts like Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III continue to be concerned about the obvious security failures at the Capitol.


“Imagine this: Someone has been threatening you for weeks. The day they say they will come to your home, you leave your door unlocked. Not only do you leave it unlocked, but you open the door to let a few of those who threatened you inside,” says Griffin. “The historic U.S. Capitol is a home of sorts for the American people.”


One observer wrote that the attack on the Capitol may be “the greatest policing failure in American history.”


Griffin says, “In my experience, I have never seen such a security breach. It was unconscionable to leave the Capitol vulnerable to an angry mob that so many people knew was coming. Protesters were able to break what should have been several layers of security. As I stated in my book Rent-A-Cop Reboot, people who are willing to trade their lives for a cause are dangerous.


“Law enforcement professionals and protesters died as a result of the security failures. Could those lives have been saved? Yes! We are hearing reports about failures of leadership and security protocol. Thank God we are also hearing about plans to make sure security is much better for the inauguration of President-Elect Joe Biden, and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris.


Also on January 6th, Congresswomen Bonnie Watson Coleman and Pramila Jayapal sheltered with other Members of Congress during the insurrection. Some of those members refused to wear masks. Now both women believe that is why they have now tested positive for COVID-19, which has claimed more than 376,000 American lives.


“Rebooting how the United States Capitol Police force, and possibly security and law enforcement professionals around the nation, protect our lawmakers must be done immediately,” says Griffin.

Begin Again

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First #Reboot Winner
Chef Carl Redding


January 5, 2021


Congratulations to Diane K., the first winner of the Leumas Publishing #Reboot contest! Diane has plunged into cold water swimming, plans to do more this year, and encourages all of us to #Reboot by giving it a try. Brava! Check out her post on the Leumas Publishing Facebook page.


“I always encourage people to do what they love, and the start of a new year is a great time to think about that,” says Leumas Security Services Founder Samuel Griffin III. “If you’re already living your dream, great! How can you take that to the next level? If you’re not, how can you get there from where you are?


“One of the best steps you can take is to reach out. Talk to family, friends, coworkers, and spiritual advisers. Listen to experts talk about making choices that can change your life, including starting tiny habits and maybe even quitting your job in order to reboot,” says Griffin, who is also the author of Rent-A-Cop Reboot. The book is designed to support people in the private security industry as they make personal and professional choices that can help them achieve their dreams. However, some gig economy workers have told Griffin that the book helped them take a different look at their careers.


Chef Carl Redding said what makes the book “great” is that “it’s credible, from a credible person. What better person to write a book like that than Sam Griffin?”


Redding helped Griffin move into executive protection early in Griffin’s career, and knows a thing or two about rebooting. A former Marine, Redding then worked for more than a decade as chief of staff for the National Action Network and personal assistant to the Reverend Al Sharpton. He left there to pursue his passion of becoming a chef, and started Amy Ruth’s restaurant in New York City. Redding sold the restaurant and moved to Georgia, where he’s considering his next step. Maybe becoming a chef at The White House? “I’d love that,” Redding says with his warm laugh.


What would you love to do? Can you #Reboot in 2021 in a way that gets you there? Share it with us using Leumas Publishing’s Instagram and Facebook. Post a tagged photo or video, and you could win a Rent-A-Cop Reboot gift box, and get a shout out here. A different winner will be randomly selected each week.


“The COVID-19 pandemic, economic challenges, demonstrations for racial justice and equity, and political upheaval that marked 2020 are moving with us into the new year,” Griffin says. “What will we move inside of ourselves to use all of this as an opportunity to create a better world?”

Thanksgiving Tripping

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