Include terms for security guards' welfare in contracts

Security agencies seem to be bending the rules to accommodate the demands of clients.

For example, some do not go through a checklist of security risk assessments when signing new contracts with clients.

A number of security guards have odd start and end timings that do not allow them to have proper rest at home.

Some clients insist that the security officers do not leave their post, even for meal breaks.

When the officers take their official one-hour break, they have to seek the client's permission and are then asked how long they would take or be told to make it short.

There are also clients who demand tight security, but do not want to make investments to improve their dilapidated equipment and facilities.

Security officers are then reprimanded when a breach is detected.

The security industry here has a high turnover rate.

Associations that are supposed to protect the interests of security officers are not speaking up for the members.

The Police Licensing and Regulatory Department should make it mandatory for security agencies to submit an honest risk assessment for new contracts.

Such an assessment should highlight the security amenities, suggestions to further improve the security facilities and staff welfare, as well as the usual dos and don'ts.

Shah Pakri

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 29, 2016, with the headline 'Include terms for security guards' welfare in contracts'. Print Edition | Subscribe