The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has welcomed the publication of the Security Industry Authority Triennial Review 2016-2017 report issued by the Home Office. Conducted on behalf of the Home Secretary Sajid Javid by Tony Regan, a senior official in the Crime, Policing and Fire Group within the Home Office, the Triennial Review makes evidence-based recommendations on how the delivery of private security industry services can be improved in a way that brings benefits to the communities in which they’re delivered, and also to those who purchase such services.
The Review’s recommendations address the questions of regulatory activity within the private security industry, where it can add most value, as well as what effective regulation will look like over the next five-to-ten years.
The majority of recommendations laid out in the report are strongly supported by the BSIA, aligning closely as they do with the Trade Association’s key lobbying positions on the following topics: the retention of regulation for such a critical and sensitive industry, the merits of business licensing to ensure greater probity of security providers and the need for in-house security to be brought into the regulatory ambit (a particular imperative given the competitive imbalance and the potential higher risk to public safety posed by the absence of the mandatory vetting of personnel).
The report also recommends that purchasers of security should be placed under a legal obligation for the quality of private security solutions that they procure.
BSIA CEO James Kelly was invited to join the Home Office Challenge Group overseeing the Triennial Review, and was able to put a number of the BSIA’s views to the Independent Reviewer, focusing in particular on the subjects of regulation and the industry’s value and contribution to the protection of people and assets.
Number of concerns highlighted
Upon the release of the report, Kelly commented: “We welcome the belated publication of the Triennial Review, which was completed in 2016. We regret that the report wasn’t published sooner, since it touches on a number of concerns held by the private security industry for some time now.”
Kelly went on to state: “The Independent Reviewer’s report rightly observes that the private security industry is a significant asset to UK safety and security. There is now a real opportunity to enhance the private security industry’s contribution to public protection, safeguarding and national security. This supports the BSIA’s efforts to champion the industry as a key partner to police forces through the Police and Security Group Initiative supported by the National Police Chiefs’ Council, the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners, the National Business Crime Centre and the Security Industry Authority itself.”
In addition, Kelly explained: “We have long been concerned about the risks posed by the absence of vetting and licensing for in-house security personnel, but especially so now in these times of heightened threats. Placing legal obligations on purchasers here, as exists in other industries, would also help in maintaining quality security provision, while better protecting the UK’s citizens and businesses.”
By way of conclusion, Kelly informed Risk Xtra: “We now call upon the Home Office to respond to these key proposals and consult with the industry on their implementation without further delay. The private security industry is an enormous resource for police and intelligence services collaboration, and often the first responder to incidents on Britain’s streets. We can help in the fight against all forms of criminality. We’re ideally placed to do so.”