Lincoln day cares use emergency alert system for first time

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – On Wednesday, local day cares used their emergency alert system for the first time.

Lincoln Police served a search warrant alongside the SWAT team to apprehend a man on South 21st Street.

UNL Children’s Center was less than a mile away, causing staff to jump into action to protect their students.

Alaina Huls, team lead at the Children’s Center, said the day care practiced for months for potential emergencies.

When the notification came on Thursday, one staffer “jumped on the intercom and announced that we were going into secure,” Huls said.

“I just went around to the classrooms, making sure that they all knew what was taking place,” she said. “We practiced these multiple times, so they knew exactly what to do.”

Suzanne Schnieder, associate director of a group of early childhood education advocates called Lincoln Littles, hopes other Nebraska day cares do the same.

“This has been a collaborative effort; it hasn’t been one person or one organization,” she said. “It’s been a collaborative effort between lots of people in our community to make sure this has happened. Even though this is in its beginning stages and it’s just getting going, we think that this would be something that would be effective in any community.”

Lincoln Littles’ next step for Lincoln day cares is to implement a relocation and reunification strategy in emergency preparation.

The step will create evacuation plans for day cares in the event of an emergency.

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