Police say companies not operating illegally
Representatives of some local
security companies have raised concerns that the law that regulates security
services in Cayman is being ignored by certain operators, in effect punishing
business that have complied with the legislation.
“In my opinion, what’s happening is
exactly what we expected,” said Security Centre President Stuart Bostock. “It’s
just another law on the books that’s not being enforced.”
Royal Cayman Islands Police Service
officials said Tuesday that all security companies in Cayman were operating
properly within the Private Security Services Law (2007). However, they
indicated that some licence renewals for security firms are still outstanding.
Licences for each security company must be renewed each year.
“We can confirm that a small number
of security companies have not yet been awarded their licenses,” read an RCIPS
statement sent to the Compass. “We are working with other relevant statutory
agencies to ensure compliance with the companies’ obligations under the
relevant statutes as expeditiously as possible.”
Police did not provide a list of
companies that have not yet registered under the law.
Mr. Bostock said he was aware of at
least two local firms that had not done so and said he has brought these issues
to the attention of police, but he had not received “a satisfactory response”
as of press time.
He said he was trying to obtain a
comprehensive list of licensed security companies in Cayman.
“It should be public information,”
he said. “Anyone should be able to obtain a list of licensed companies on the
Islands because the law was introduced to protect the consumer.”
Katherine Briggs, operations
manager of Cayman Armoured, said she shares the Security Centre’s concerns
about unlicensed operators, but doesn’t agree with Mr. Bostock’s assessment of
“I just think it was, ‘Oh, here’s a
way for us to generate revenue’,” Mrs. Briggs said.
The Cayman Armoured manager said
the issue of underpayment, mistreatment and other difficulties in the local
security industries are well documented and need to be addressed.
“But I don’t see the benefit of
(the law) to be honest, if you still have security companies doing the same
stuff they were doing before the law,” she said.
“It’s just unfortunate that we’ve
got another law on our books, just like our health law, and our pension law,
and our labour law, and our immigration law…which seems like a voluntary law
that companies can choose to comply with or not,” Mr. Bostock said.
RCIPS officials provided no further
comments to Caymanian Compass questions on the matter of security licensing.
The Private Security Services Law
(2007) gives the RCIPS commissioner the power to issue and oversee security
guard and security company licences. Under the law, security firms and their
guards must be licensed at the discretion of the RCIPS commissioner.
The police commissioner, or a
designee, can reject any request for a licence if an applicant was disqualified
by the courts, or if there are concerns about the person’s character,
competence or finances.
Security business owners must also
convince the commissioner or his or her designee that they understand modern
security systems, civil rights, and provide suitable training for employees.