Over 160 directors and managers from security companies in the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) enjoyed a series of industry briefings organised by the Government’s Office for Security & Counter-Terrorism (OSCT) in London on Wednesday 10 February 2010.
The briefings were attended by representatives from the BSIA’s Security Guarding, Cash and Valuables in Transit (CVIT) and Police & Public Services sections and were arranged exclusively for security companies providing frontline security staff to guard crowded places and protect the critical national infrastructure.Following a keynote address by Lord West of Spithead, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Security & Counter-Terrorism, delegates received briefings from senior staff of the OSCT on the UK’s counter-terrorism strategy. Additional briefings were given by the Centre for Critical National Infrastructure, the National Counter-Terrorism Security Office, and the Olympic Security Directorate.
James Kelly, Chief Executive of the BSIA, comments: “Terrorism presents a serious and continuing threat to the UK’s infrastructure, and the private security industry plays a vital role in ensuring the everyday safety of both businesses and the public. The success of this event represents the strong working relationship between government and industry and demonstrates that by working together, we can ensure that the country is better protected.”
Bill Muskin, Chairman of the BSIA’s Security Guarding Section, highlights the benefits that industry delegates gained from the day: “Sometimes Government Departments can appear quite mysterious but it was refreshing to meet and hear from the OSCT, who were very open with their goals and objectives. What was particularly pleasing was their genuine desire to work in partnership with the private security industry, as well as their clear understanding of the many benefits that our staff can bring to ensuring the safety of the public. All in all a very informative day and one we hope to build on.”
The OSCT has since reported that feedback from the event has been wholly positive and has stressed the importance of building further on this partnership by taking its important counter-terror message deeper into industry.