Private Security firms inhabit a parallel universe
A new report recently prepared for Public Safety Canada (Montgomery & Griffiths, 2015) confirms the trend that we at FSG have been seeing in our industry – the number of private security service providers in Canada has grown significantly in the last two decades. From 1991 to 2001 the Canadian investigations and security industry grew by 69% (Sanders, 2005), between 2006 and 2012 it grew another 40% (Hovbrender, 2013), and all signs point to continued growth.
The size and scope of services offered by the new private security firms are also expanding, but the report stresses that this is happening in the absence of empirical research studies or even basic information on the size of these firms, their budgets, and their activities. It concludes that “At present, these firms seem to inhabit a parallel universe to both public police and traditional private security firms.”
The report emphasizes that now attention needs to be turned to the legal framework within which private security firms operate, with a focus on developing compliance standards and mechanisms to ensure effective oversight. We at FSG pride ourselves on setting a high standard of professionalism and integrity in how and why we operate: we employ a secure assignment management portal, have over five times the required insurance coverage, and even our administrative support staff maintain security worker licenses to ensure a high level of service.
Hovbrender, A. 2013. Situational Analysis of the Private Security Industry and National Occupational Standards for Security Guards, Private Investigators and Armoured Car Guards. Ottawa, ON: Police Sector Council. Accessed on December 1, 2016 from http://cpi-ac.ca/Discussion%20Document%20Revised%20January%2030.pdf
Montgomery, R., & Griffiths, C. (2015). The Use of Private Security for Policing. Ottawa: Public Safety Canada (requested from PS.CSCCBResearch-RechercheSSCRC.SP@canada.ca)
Sanders, T. (2003). Rise of the Rent a Cop: Private Security in Canada 1991-2001. JustResearch, 9, 19-22. Research and Statistics Division, Department of Justice Canada. Accessed on December 1, 2016 from http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/rp-pr/jr/jr09/jr09.pdf