New security association recognizes guard heroism
By Neil Sutton
Over the years in my role as editor of Canadian Security, I have heard many, many stories of the heroism of security guards.
Whether it’s intervening in an attack, preventing a potential suicide, or administering life-saving CPR, there are countless examples of extraordinary measures that have averted tragedy.Many of these good deeds are acknowledged by guard companies through awards programs. Other organizations, like the Association of Professional Security Agencies (APSA), run annual programs that acknowledge and reward the great things that security guards and supervisors do. But for every heroic action that is recognized, I have to assume there are dozens more that are not. In short, there can never be enough recognition for front line professionals who put themselves in harm’s way to help out people in trouble, often complete strangers.
David Sulston, director of security at Oxford Properties in Toronto, reached out to me in January to let me know that he and Paragon Security president Kevin Sanjari had been working on an idea to celebrate front line security professionals — a group specifically dedicated to the life-saving work that they do. Sulston and Sanjari’s idea came together quickly, taking shape as the Canadian Security Lifesaver Association (CSLA).
“The idea was actually spawned by a conversation that Kevin Sanjari and I were having where Kevin advised me that he was celebrating one of his team; coincidentally one of our teams was involved in a life-saving incident,” said Sulston in an article that was recently published on the Canadian Security website. “We started discussing how we would get these types of very positive interactions out to a broader audience.”
The two assembled a board of directors comprising security companies, consultants and professionals allied to the industry. I agreed to volunteer on the board and launch committee and Canadian Security magazine is participating as a media partner.The new board meets regularly and is entirely non-partisan. The association is devoted to recognizing all guards — whether they work for contract security or in-house programs — and from all vertical markets and geographies across Canada. The first CSLA award was handed out in early March to Paragon security manager Jodie Leishman and the association is now accepting nominations for future award winners.
I encourage you to visit canadiansecuritylifesaver.ca for more details on the association and how you can nominate a front line security professional who has saved a life.