On the Brent Housing Estate, a neighbourhood warden, Kay-Ann Beckford-Reid of G4S Secure Solutions rescued a young girl who was being attacked by a crowd of thirty youths. Kay-Ann bravely intervened, rescued the girl and led her to safety with the gang of youths still in pursuit, and then called the emergency services. Kay-Ann has been described as always showing passion and commitment for her work. She acted with a sense of duty and another person’s safety in mind and risked injury to herself in order to halt the attack. Yesterday, Kay Ann, nine other security officers and four security teams were honoured as the industry’s best as winners of the British Security Industry Association’s Annual Security Officer Awards 2009. Also recognised at the award ceremony were Cash-in-transit couriers with Special Awards for Outstanding Service, sponsored by the Security Industry Authority. The awards acknowledge actions by security officers which are particularly courageous or meritorious.
The Annual Security Officer Awards 2009, presented by Admiral the Lord West of Spithead, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State responsible for security and counter-terrorism at the Home Office, and sponsored by Camberford Law plc, recognise excellence within the security guarding sector of the private security industry, and honour those going beyond the call of duty to make an outstanding contribution to British business. Awards were presented in the following categories: Service to the Customer, Outstanding Act, Best Newcomer, Best Use of Technology and Best Team.
The couriers, whose identities are protected due to the sensitive nature of their work, have been rewarded for the following outstanding acts:
One Loomis cash-in-transit courier was rewarded for his actions whilst replenishing an ATM in Stratford, London. When transferring a cash box back to the vehicle, he was approached by a male attacker. The male made a grab for the box, but the courier held on tight and a struggle ensued. Finally the attacker ran off empty-handed. This is the third time the courier has been attacked and each time he has remained unharmed and the offender has failed in their attack.
A G4S cash-in-transit courier received his award for his actions during an attack in Lancaster where he was ambushed by two men carrying a machete and an axe. Following a struggle, the courier managed to remove one of the attackers’ disguises. The attackers then made their escape and the courier managed to note their vehicle registration number and alert the police.
Another G4S cash-in-transit courier was rewarded for his pursuit of an assailant who had attacked his colleague, running off with a cash box. After a struggle, the courier managed to retrieve the stolen cash box and the assailant ran away. The courier then returned safely to his colleague who had called the police. His actions have been described as above and beyond the call of duty.
“Today we have praised the achievements of officers and teams for providing outstanding customer service, risking their lives for the safety of others and working in partnership to provide a holistic approach to security,” says BSIA Chief Executive, John Bates. “Modern security officers work in diverse and challenging environments. Despite this, these officers have demonstrated a commitment to ensure the safety of both their clients and the public they serve and are testament to the high standards expected from the industry as a whole.” Commenting on the awards to the Cash in Transit Couriers, BSIA Chief Executive, John Bates said; “The cash-in-transit couriers that are receiving these BSIA awards have been through extremely harrowing experiences. Their ability to stay calm in very challenging situations is proof of the comprehensive nature of their training and their strength of character. I commend them all for their actions and for being prepared to perform what is an essential public service in such a professional manner.”
Other equally deserving Annual Security Officer Awards included;
Barbara is based at the Royal Mail offices in West Bars and is employed by CIS Security Ltd. Whilst on duty one night, Barbara noticed a man standing on a ledge on the nearby footbridge looking like he was about to jump. Having called the Police, she approached the man to talk calmly with him. At one point the man slipped and was only stopped from falling by Barbara holding him. Eventually Barbara persuaded the man to come down from the ledge and he was left in the hands of the emergency services, going beyond the call of duty to save a life in what was a very stressful situation.
Omar won the award for his brave actions whilst on duty as a neighbourhood warden for Brent Housing Partnership in North London. Omar noticed smoke coming from one of the flats and upon investigation found there was a fire in the kitchen and the resident was unconscious. Omar immediately carried the resident to safety and called the emergency services. After ensuring the casualty was being dealt with by a colleague, he courageously went back into the burning building to evacuate the remaining residents.
Service to the Customer
Job works for Constant Security Services Ltd and was nominated for his work at Holme Park Court in Berry Brow. Described as having the X factor and being the man to rely on in a crisis, Job won his award for his dedication and commitment to his role in what is often a challenging environment. The estate where he works houses many vulnerable residents who come from diverse backgrounds but Job’s firm but fair approach means that any issues that arise are dealt with effectively.
John works at DHL (B&Q) Scunthorpe and is employed by VSG. John was nominated for his award for consistently giving 110% in every aspect of his role. Not only has John’s proactive attitude to his duties ensured a number of procedures are now in place on site, he has also been described as an outstanding individual, who consistently delivers all that is asked of him and much more. Recently instigating a crime prevention system for the entire industrial estate, in cooperation with the local police, John ensured that vital information could be shared between all the businesses on site.
Stuart works for Wilson James Ltd and is based at BG Group in Thames Valley Park. Stuart won his award for his contribution to improving security systems on site during the massive refurbishment of the BG Group premises, going well beyond his designated role, suggesting changes to the electronic security systems and becoming heavily involved in the project management of the new installation. The results of his work have revolutionised the security function on site resulting in a promotion on the contract.
Paul joined the security industry from the army 18 months ago and works for VSG at JLL Grange and Pyramids. During this time, not only has Paul been committed to improving systems and procedures on site, he has excelled so much that he has already been promoted. He has been described as having passion and drive and being committed to improving the level of service to the customer from the officers that work for him. Paul leads by example with an excellent attitude, leaving no doubt that he will succeed in his desire to climb to bigger and better things within the industry.
Chrissy works for ADP Security Systems Ltd and is based at Tunsgate Square Shopping Centre in Guildford. Chrissy won the award for the great contribution she has made to the site in just 9 months and for her commitment to the Guildsafe scheme which involves sharing information and best practice across a network of security teams in the town. Having only worked in the industry for a year, Chrissy has been described as an invaluable part of the team almost from day one, she has constantly shown enthusiasm for the job and is a positive person to have around, popular with both tenants and contractors.
Best Use of Technology
Gary works for VSG and provides security to Argos. Gary received his award for not only introducing the first biometric access control system to be used across the entire Argos distribution network, but also introducing a computerised visitor management system across all Argos distribution sites. Gary demonstrates an extraordinary level of knowledge about high-tech security solutions, conducting appropriate risk assessments, trialling several systems and ensuring staff are proficient in the new systems. As a result of the new system there has been a reduction of both stock losses and goods going missing between areas.
The GlaxoSmithKline team of security officers work for Reliance Security Services Ltd and are based in County Durham. The team was nominated for effectively utilising control room technology to provide exceptional monitoring and access control services. The team have been described as confident with a commanding presence within the control room which has enabled them to deal with sensitive situations arising from the recent introduction of a new system. The officers are each proficient in a number of different areas which include: CCTV and intruder detection devices; access control; building and process management; critical safety and production alarms.
Richard Hopwood Ford
Richard is based at Bevan Brittan in Bristol and won his award for integrating the on-site CCTV system, increasing the level of security available, whilst ensuring he is proficient in its capabilities, allowing him to react to incidents accordingly. Richard, who is employed by Reliance Security Services Ltd, has proficiently utilised the state-of-the-art system to assist the Police in making arrests or fly-tipping, mugging and a possible sexual assault.
Catterick Garrison Team
The Catterick Garrison CCTV team works for Legion Group plc and was nominated for providing exemplary CCTV services to the Garrison and Richmond town centre. In particular, the team contributed to the conviction of a rapist who was caught very quickly due to the efficient examination conducted by the team of CCTV footage, saving the police many hours of investigation. The team works with a variety of agencies on a regular basis – the Army, Military, Police, Civil Police, Ministry of Defence Police and other specialists, and plays a major role in the prevention of crime.
MoD Pre-Deployment Training Team
The team of Gurkha security officers work in dual roles as a training support group for the army and as security officers for their employer, G4S Secure Solutions (UK) Ltd. Much of the work with the MoD involves the Gurkha security officers assisting with role-play scenarios to train British soldiers ahead of their deployment to Afghanistan or Iraq. This partnership has been deemed ground-breaking and a huge success which, due to the dedication of the Gurkha security officers, has pulled together to provide high standards of training support for the armed forces.
Westfield Derby Shopping Centre Team
The Westfield Derby Shopping Centre team work for VSG and was nominated for its continuing commitment to safety and security at the shopping centre after dealing with over 1400 reportable incidents since 2007. The team, which has been hailed as one of the biggest and best security teams in the area, has been particularly praised for handling a number of difficult situations in a professional and efficient manner, including a suicide incident and arson attempt, and continually adapting its role to handle the unique and diverse challengers presented at the centre.