Today the Prime Minister has announced that a commemorative coin will be given to all police and armed forces personnel who helped to deliver the biggest peacetime security operation since WWII. This is a great way of rewarding the 18,000+ military personnel who were drafted in a very short notice (whilst cancelling some well earned leave) to cover the G4S fiasco, but the Police also (approximately 12,000). I know my views may not be popular but surely the Police (and some of you may also say the military) are doing a job for which they are being paid for (similar to private security staff). Also police officers that I have spoken to are receiving a significant amount of overtime payment due to the Games, albeit whilst having all leave canceled over the entire Games period.
The Games security operation has cost the UK public close to £1bn but when you take into account the other associated security operations involving private sector companies who have had to improved their physical and information security as a result of the Olympics this figure vastly increases.
David Cameron said,
“I am delighted to be giving a commemorative coin to everyone who helped to deliver the biggest peacetime security operation this country has ever seen”
Downing Street said,
“Consideration was also being given to extending the award of the commemorative coin to others involved in the Games, including the fire brigade and ambulance service”
The private sector seems to have largely considered the Olympics as BAU (although working extended hours, days etc) and often overtime premiums are not being paid as a result of this, so I have to question who else should receive this token gesture of a commemorative coin.
Downing Street said
“The exact criteria for qualifying had not yet been finalised”
Yes the police and armed forces are protecting the public but so are many private sector security staff (and not only frontline staff), it was great to have personally been involved in a very small part of the Olympics but let’s not forget the wider, broader security input (I would also be happy to pay a nominal fee to receive a little keep sake)! The success of the Olympics security operation can’t just be attributed to the Police and armed forces.
We are interested in your views on this subject so please add your comments below and take part in our online survey below (note that private security is not just G4S, its other officers in uniform, management and public/private sector roles, people in PhySec, PerSec and InfoSec positions……so please be positive):
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