SIA mandatory PI 'top up' training - the likely impact

Now that the decision to introduce PI training for all door supervisors has been made, Bill Fox looks at some of the practical implications of implementing the training and answers some of the questions you have been asking.

In practical terms what is this likely to involve?

The bulk of any contact time (1 day) will be on meeting the SIA endorsed Unit 4 (PI) outcomes. There will also be a requirement surrounding basic awareness of first aid, dealing with 14-18 year olds and terror threats. Although the SIA and its endorsed awarding organisations are still discussing details, we anticipate a pre-study requirement covering the awareness elements, with an assessment of this on the PI training day.

When is the SIA renewal requirement likely to kick in?

To our knowledge, the SIA remains committed to introducing the requirement this year. As it wants to provide the industry with 6 months' notice of the renewal point when the training will commence, it is likely to be November/December time. Sooner rather than later hopefully in light of the festive season!

Is there trainer capacity to support demand for Top Up training?

We think so, as PI is rolling out already on a substantial scale and this requirement will be post Olympics. An increasing number of existing door supervisors are already doing PI voluntarily and this is likely to increase once the renewal date is confirmed.

Will the Top up requirement impact on the take up of DS licences?

 One of the quirks of licensing is that a large number of DS licence holders are not door supervisors in the conventional sense, they are security guards. Many security companies have focused on the door supervision pathway as this has allowed them to deliver a single training programme and benefit from further operational flexibility. The equation has now changed and many security companies will now consider switching a percentage of their personnel to the security guarding licence at point of renewal. Maybo supports this as there is little value in training individuals in PI who don't need it, and this could be counter productive through encouraging it's use.

This change will require companies to step back and re-evaluate their needs in this area, including an objective review of their policies, contracts, risks and training requirements.

What happens when certain security guarding roles require PI?

The driver for change has been night venues which have experienced the most tragedies. There can also be significant risk in some retail and hospital settings but this depends on the specifics of the role, policy etc. Employer guidance is available from Skills for Security and the SIA on these issues in Retail and NHS Security and on our website Some retailers for example encourage arrest, an activity which the British Retail Consortium can evidence carries substantially heightened risk, whilst others focus on deterrence and let aggressive individuals leave. Training in these areas will be subject to risk based decisions but we believe that Unit 4 is now the benchmark for all licensed roles where PI is required. Some will also require additional PI training over and above Unit 4.

Will Unit 4 become a requirement for Close Protection?

A substantial percentage of CP licence holders undertake DS work at some point at events and in the night time economy, and are probably more vulnerable to assault and to prosecution through their door supervision activities than during UK based CP. If the CP badge is to continue to cover door supervision, it is inevitable that Unit 4 will be required, and just a matter of how and when i.e. The practicalities. In their CP operations individuals will also have additional training needs to those provided in Unit 4 and the leading CP training providers already address these.

What prior PI training will be recognised by the SIA at renewal?

To our knowledge this remains undecided so we believe the safest position is to train Unit 4. We anticipate some recognition for prior learning will be possible where completion of an 'approved PI programme' can be shown, but there may be additional requirements and costs associated with this.


Posted by Maybo on May 22, 2012


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