The CCTV pilot project conducted during the Christmas holidays by the Toronto Police Service (TPS) will be extended by the the Yonge Business Improvement Area (BIA) to the tune of $150,000.
Security directors at Vancouver hotels are bringing their collective knowledge together with community police officers to stay better informed about incidents happening in and around their downtown properties. The Vancouver Hotel Security Association (VHSA ) had its first meeting in June and is attended by security managers and those responsible for security from hotels in Vancouver. The idea is to share and communicate information regarding thefts, fraud, and other crimes to prevent similar problems occurring at other properties."Local community police participation, and communication to members in regards to known offenders forms the back bone of this initiative," says Clive Hamdorff, director of security with the Four Seasons in Vancouver. “The idea is to share information of what’s happening in Vancouver and we hope to extend out to the airport as well.” "I discovered in 2006 that the hotel directors’ association had disbanded and there wasn’t a focus for hotels and I felt there was a need for hotels to communicate with each other more," he says. "The Olympics are obviously coming up and that is something that wil have certain security issues looked at and addressed but we are primarly focused on issues and information regarding hotels."“One of our goals is to also keep people up-to-date on new technology. We meet for about an hour and will be bringing in speakers to present on topics such as CCTV to give everyone an update on how systems are changing rapidly." There are about 25 members but he hopes that will increase as additional properties open in the Vancouver area as there are a number of luxury hotel brands coming to Vancouver including the recently announced Ritz-Carlton, the 61-storey Shangri La in 2008, a new Fairmont Hotel on the waterfront and a boutique hotel called the Loden Vancouver. A new convention centre is also being constructed. Hamdorff came to Canada in 1991 and was manager of security for the Vancouver Trade and Convention Centre ”“ now the Vancouver Trade and Exhibition Centre — and was there for seven years, responsible for security at events held at the site. “When I was there I was connected with an organization called Operation Co-operation and it works alongside the police and business communities to share information. Alongside that was the security hotel organization at the time,” says Hamdorff. He later organized the Whistler Hospitality and Loss Prevention Association, a similar security information sharing group for the hotels in Whistler when he was at the Westin Resort and Spa, involving local businesses, the RCMP, and fire departments. The organization was created to bring together managers in the hospitality industry, who share information regarding loss prevention and general security concerns. Hamdorff says Const. David Bierley from the Vancouver City Police is an important component in the new security group in terms of providing additional communication to the Association."Dave also runs the PROPERTYCOP program in Vancouver which is being supported by chief constables across Canada," says Hamdorff. “There is police involvement with the community police," he says. The group meets every third Thursday and meeting locations rotate to the various member hotels. “That way everyone can see the different ideas the other security directors have put in place," says Hamdorff.
Milton, Ont.-based AFI has acquired a majority interest in U.S.-based International Management Assistance Corporation (IMAC).The merger of the Canadian and U.S. companies marks the formation of a single source provider of labour dispute and business continuity services.
In October, the CBC aired a news report about three patrons who were allegedly beat up by bouncers at Toronto’s Guvernment night club. The patrons said they inadvertently wandered into a staff-only area when looking for a place to have a smoke, and the female patron was allegedly kicked in the head repeatedly, resulting in a loss of hearing. These types of stories don’t often make the news, since they’re typically settled out of court, but it happens more than one might realize. The businesses that employ bouncers or door-staff whose behavior might be scrutinized tend to use generous settlements to victims as a way of ensuring adverse publicity doesn’t ensue. “It’s generally known that if you get a half-decent case of saying a bouncer has gooned you, that you should pursue it, because there’s a good chance the establishment will settle,” says Brian Robertson, president of Toronto-based Diligent Security Training and Consulting. “The victim is not to talk about the situation, [so] what you hear about is the tip of the iceberg.”But this situation is changing in Ontario, thanks to Bill 159 (along with similar legislation in other provinces). Under the Private Security & Investigative Services Act, for the first time bouncers will fall under the same legislative environment as the contract security industry. The legislation, which passed on August 23, gives security personnel one year to become certified. “We were dealing with a piece of legislation that was over 40 years old and was in dire need of update and change,” says Ontario Registrar Jon Herberman. “Fundamentally it’s meant to help professionalize the industry and enhance public safety in this province.” A huge range of sectors were excluded under the old Act, including in-house security. Under the new legislation, if you’re working as a security practitioner or private investigator, regardless of whether you’re working for a licensed agency or in-house employer, you need to be licensed. Also, if you’ve committed any of 84 prescribed criminal offences, you will not be eligible to obtain a licence. This legislation is a paradigm shift since the entertainment industry has never been exposed to that level of scrutiny before, says Steve Summerville, president of Stay Safe Instructional Programs based in Ajax, Ont.. “They have to understand the provisions of the power of arrest and the application of force,” he says. “If you put your hands on someone, you’re accountable.” Security personnel must be registered by August 22, 2008 (with annual re-certification), with mandatory training to follow. The training standards are still in development, but it’s anticipated there will be a tiered training standard, where tier-two and tier-three will encompass use of force training, says Summerville, which could include handcuff and retention components, as well as ethical and moral components. “It’s how you speak to people, how you engage people, not how you control people,” he says. “This is what this Ministry has caught on to and doormen are no longer exempt.” He believes this is going to have a dramatic impact on the entertainment and hospitality industry — especially since there are stiff penalties for non-compliance. If an establishment is using a doorman who isn’t licensed, for example, the doorman could be fined up to $25,000 and the business could be fined up to $250,000. There’s also the possibility of jail time. “You’re looking for professional and appropriate behaviours for doormen,” says Summerville. “And for those who don’t comply, resistance will be futile.” Summerville has provided expert commentary when these types of incidents go to trial, and he’s currently involved in two cases involving death in establishments serving alcohol. His job is to help describe the due diligence and practices in place to mitigate risks — and he has more work than he can handle. In Owen Sound, for example, a doorman killed a man inside a bar by banging his head on the floor. The man was a dentist, with a family of three and a healthy, thriving practice, and for 30 minutes nobody called the police. When an ambulance finally arrived, the man’s vital signs were absent. Where behaviours are being critiqued, the overriding factor is how door-staff are being trained. And in many cases, there is no training. “It’s pretty hard to articulate what you don’t know,” says Summerville. Training is also meant to protect bouncers. “It shows your behaviour was consistent with a training program. If injuries are being discussed, the injuries were consistent with resistance, not negligence.” Marlowe Restaurant & Wine Bar in Richmond Hill, Ont. is one of the first establishments to get on board. “I saw it in the newspaper about a month before its inception but I first heard of it from my head doorman,” says owner Andrew Taranowski. “He works at a security firm downtown, and they mentioned they’re going to get a training certificate.” While he says he’s blessed with good security staff, he’d rather be proactive than reactive when it comes to the law, so he decided to enact a training program prior to the date that Bill 159 came into effect. “There are too many goons out there,” he says. “Doormen need training. They’re in a position of authority. Why throw a punch when you can talk to somebody?” But he was still “blown away” by the legislation because it’s so tough. “It’s right along the lines of the terrorist laws in this country where they can come into the restaurant, [and] if you don’t have paperwork, if you don’t have detailed reports on an incident, they can close you down for a year. And there’s no recourse.” Another problem is that few people in the entertainment industry seem to know about the legislation. “Getting close to August I would think and hope they’d have some people going to around to advise the bars of the legalities,” he says. Several Toronto night clubs were contacted repeatedly for this story, including the Guvernment, but did not return any calls. There are six jurisdictions that are at some stage of regulatory reform. Manitoba brought in an amendment to its legislation in January of this year — it extended the regulatory scope of the Act to cover the proprietary industry and introduced mandatory pre-employment training for security guards (though it’s only classroom theory training). Quebec and Ontario have both brought in new legislation and in both cases they’re regulating the proprietary industry and bringing in mandatory training. B.C. has had mandatory training for the contract side of the industry, and just this spring passed new legislation that will extend the act to cover the proprietary industry. In Nova Scotia and Alberta, bureaucrats are busy drafting new legislation; both will regulate the proprietary industry and introduce mandatory training. This is happening because there has been an expansion in the roles played by private security personnel, where they’ve taken on a more frequent, more active and more visible role in doing the types of things that traditionally only police did, and that’s largely around the area of power of arrest and use of force, says Robertson. The contract industry has had to go through licensing and background checks, but it’s the proprietary industry that’s getting in the news most often because they’re out there acting like cops, he says. But there are some major challenges the legislators will face. “Because the bar industry has never been and never thought of itself as part of the private security industry, it’s certainly been resistant to the idea of suddenly finding itself in the private security industry being regulated,” says Robertson. What’s worse is that the networks of communication aren’t well established. “We’re doing this with intensive participation and consultation with the industry,” says Herberman. “We have an advisory committee that largely encompasses the entire industry. We’ve done an awful lot of outreach including posting all of our draft regulations on our website for public comment.” But, says Robertson, although the Ontario Registrar has been sending out discussion papers and reports and posting draft regulations, and there have been seminars and discussions and newspaper articles, and this has been going on for five years, when the new legislation became law, public meetings were full of people from the security industry wondering what was going on. “That’s in the actual security guard industry, so who knows what the level of awareness is in the bar industry, which is even more decentralized.” Then there’s the matter of criminal charges. “The anecdotal belief of everyone I’ve ever talked to in security circles is that there will be a frightening number of bouncers currently working in this province who will have to admit they’ve been convicted of one or more of those offences in the past and as the law stands right now that means as of Aug. 23 of next year, they absolutely cannot work as a bouncer in this province and there is no grounds for appeal,” he says. Another problem is that there could be a collision once training begins next November. The bouncer industry is a cultural enclave and there are pockets of that enclave in which there is an understandings about what bouncers do and don’t have the legal authority to do. And that doesn’t always jive with what the law actually says. And so training, or re-training, the bouncer industry is going to be fraught with challenges, especially since management isn’t required to undergo the same training. “It’s tough enough to train ill-informed internalized misunderstandings of law and appropriate conduct out of officers themselves, but where their employers are in need of retraining in that respect, it can be particularly challenging," says Robertson.It’s also anticipated that people will be running around at the last minute trying to get licensed as the deadline looms. “There’s going to be a run on the door to get people licensed,” says Summerville. “And I know with confidence that this government is going to enforce and charge.”
Retailers are discovering new uses for security cameras in their stores, providing new information about customers, their shopping habits, and how they respond to in-store marketing.
Jamie Hillis and his team of Security Area Managers have made it known they aren’t huddled in an office spying on everyone. Instead, they have taught employees at the City of Mississauga to be the eyes and ears of their facilities and it’s paying off in a more engaged workforce.
Retailers say losses to financial and other scams perpetrated by organized crime are reaching epidemic proportion. Rita Estwick and her army of loss prevention officers have had enough.
Bruce Power boosts worker safety by increasing bandwidth to its CANDU reactors with networked analogue/IP CCTV system.It’s one thing to string up CCTV cameras around a building, but it’s another when that building is a concrete vault that hosts a nuclear reactor.
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