The Private Security Industry Act of 2001 gives the Security Industry Authority (SIA) the function of setting standards of conduct in the United Kingdom’s private security industry. Time is winding down to provide input during the SIA’s six-week consultation on a new draft code of conduct for SIA licence holders and applicants for SIA licences. The authority is inviting the industry, licence holders, and anyone with an interest in private security to have their say on the draft code of conduct by taking part in a survey. The consultation will end on 23 February. “The ethos of the code of conduct is that it will improve standards and public safety by setting out the standards of conduct and behaviour we expect people to uphold if they are entrusted with protecting the public, premises and property,” says Ian Todd, Chief Executive, Security Industry Authority (SIA). Security's Code of Conduct A code of conduct sets out what standards of behaviour professionals have to meet in order to work in the profession In security as in many professions, a code of conduct sets out what standards of behaviour professionals have to meet in order to work in the profession. SIA is suggesting Six Commitments of behaviour that will apply to all licensed security operatives and to applicants. If the code of conduct is sanctioned by the U.K. Home Office, it would become mandatory and incorporated into SIA’s licensing criteria Get Licensed. A commitment to certain standards of behaviour is fundamental to what it means to be fit and proper, and to being part of a profession. The six commitments are: Act with honesty and integrity Be trustworthy Protect the people and property you are entrusted to protect Be professional at work Act with fairness and impartiality at work Be accountable for your decisions and actions “We will review the comments from the consultation once it concludes on 23 February, analyse the results and publish a report on our findings,” says Todd. “The SIA will then use the comments it has received to write a final version of the code of conduct. The introduction of a code of conduct will be subject to final approval by Home Office Ministers.” SIA’s current Standards of Behaviour provide guidance on professional behaviour but are not mandatory. The draft code of conduct builds on the Standards of Behaviour. Upholding SIA's Standards The SIA’s Partnership and Interventions team is the unit that enforces the Private Security Industry Act “The majority of licence holders uphold the standards of behaviour that the SIA, their employers and the public expect of them,” says Todd. “Their professionalism and dedication keep the public safe and tackle crime. However, there are incidents in which some licence holders do not behave in this way. This minority lower the standard of service the public receives, harm public safety, and bring themselves and the rest of the private security industry into disrepute.” The SIA’s Partnership and Interventions team is the unit that enforces the Private Security Industry Act. It is likely that they will be required to enforce the code of conduct should it become mandatory. The draft code of conduct is currently out for consultation and the proposal has been shared widely to licence holders, private security businesses, and enforcement partners encouraging them all to take part. “Once the consultation has concluded, we will analyse the findings from the feedback, produce a report and publish it on our website and share this widely via social media,” says Todd.
Magenta Security MD Abbey Petkar met with SIA Chief Executive Ian Todd and Tony Holyland (SIA Head of Quality & Standards) at Magenta HQ last month to discuss concerns about the lack of business licences in the security industry. They also considered other topics focused on making the security industry more professional and more robust in the face of unscrupulous players in the market. This included how the ACS could be made more available to 80% of the industry, which represents approximately 40% of licence holders, yet to join the voluntary scheme. “It was obvious from the outset that Ian understood the issues the security industry faces and that Ian and Tony want to do more for the Industry. Ian is keen to push through changes that would enhance the whole of the security market, however, he needs to convince the Home Office that the changes are needed; and more importantly wanted by stakeholders across the whole of the security sector,” comments Abbey Petkar, managing director of Magenta Security. Business licences The conversation also considered the importance of paying guards a decent living wage – to avoid modern-day slavery “In response to the objections I have raised over the SIA’s handling of business licensing they made it clear that it is still something they wish to explore and achieve but the political landscape means it is currently unfeasible, however, they will continue to lobby the Home Office as and when appropriate.” Despite not being able to push forward with business licensing, the SIA representatives did, however, confirm their desire to approach the challenge from a different angle as explained further by Abbey. “Though they are struggling in terms of business licences, the SIA is focusing instead on the end clients, educating them on the types of security companies they should consider using to ensure they avoid cowboy firms with poor standards across a number of areas.” Commitment to positive change The conversation also considered the importance of paying guards a decent living wage – to avoid modern-day slavery; customer service levels and environmental issues, all of which are fundamental to Magenta’s business practices and ethos. It was agreed that Tony Holyland would attend the next SBN (Small Business Network) meeting at Abbey’s invitation. Tony commented that he believes that of all the organisations set up to help the security industry understand the implementation of the Security Act, the SBN is the only one to remain in existence and that he looked forward to attending the meeting. Abbey concludes: “The meeting provides a real foundation for future dialogue and commitment to positive change. SIA has a lot of work to do. However, under the leadership of Ian Todd, I am convinced that the outlook for the future of the industry is in safe hands."
Elizabeth France CBE, Security Industry Authority Chair, announces the appointment of Ian Todd as SIA Chief Executive. Ian succeeds Dave Humphries who has been interim CEO since the departure of former SIA CEO Alan Clamp at the end of October. Ian will join the SIA on 25 February 2019. Ian will be joining the SIA from the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) where he is currently Deputy Director General. This builds on a number of board level roles in professional regulation, including the health and legal sectors. Focus on public protection He has also spent time in central government, including the Cabinet Office. Ian has extensive experience of dealing with the public in a frontline role as his first career was with the NHS ambulance services. Throughout his near 15 years he was a qualified paramedic and held a number of roles to Director level, including as part of the Gold command team during 7/7. Ian will build on our work with government, the private security industry, and our other stakeholders to maintain a focus on public protection" Elizabeth France said: "I am delighted to welcome Ian as the SIA's future Chief Executive. Ian joins us with an excellent track record in leadership and organisation development, we look forward to working with him. Ian will build on our work with government, the private security industry, and our other stakeholders to maintain a focus on public protection and ensure the SIA continues to improve the service we provide to licence holders and security businesses.” Strategic direction “I am confident Ian will enjoy the challenge of delivering effective regulation in a changing environment. He will carry forward our strategic plan and build on our successes to ensure continuity and progress across all areas of the SIA's work." Ms France added: "I thank Dave Humphries for his steady leadership since Alan Clamp's departure in October. He has ensured that the SIA has continued to move forward strategically and operationally." Dave will continue at the helm until Ian arrives at the end of February. Ian Todd said: "I am excited to be taking up the post of Chief Executive at the SIA and look forward to drawing on my experience to drive the SIA's strategic direction and strengthen its regulatory role. The SIA plays an important role in protecting the public and improving standards in the security industry. I look forward to working with the board and staff at the SIA, as well as external stakeholders and partners. I am committed to building on the good work of the organisation and to ensure that the SIA continues to be seen as an effective and efficient regulator".
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