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Who Controls the Security Firms?

NCJ Number
Police Volume: 21 Issue: 10 Dated: (June-July 1989) Pages: 28-29
J Wheeler
Date Published
2 pages
The author proposes the formation, in the 1990s, and consolidation of police forces in England and Wales into six to ten regional forces; the Metropolitan Police and the Corporation of the City of London's police would be preserved independently.
Forces outside London already cooperate on a regional basis in crime squads and in anti-drug actions; local accountability can be preserved at the level of Divisional Chief Superintendent, similar to regional constabularies which exist under the present system. A national policymaking body will necessarily be accountable to Parliament and shares its role with the wider public interest. The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has been the standard-bearer for self-regulation and the resolution of standards and issues of policy in Great Britain; it increasingly relates to issues within the European Community. Verification of an employee's background is central to the concept of self-regulation; the BSIA created the National Inspectorate of Security Guard, Patrol and Transport Services and the Security Systems Inspectorate in order to regulate the security industry in matters of management, finances, and training. The government must help the progress of self-regulation despite its reluctance to license or control the contract security industry; this would make the concept acceptable to the police and the Police Federation. Another major problem is the regulation of small burglar alarm or property-guarding companies by bringing them within the scope of the existing Inspectorates. Through these measures, any conflict between the commercial crime prevention industry and the established police can be resolved.