ISO Standard Proposed for Private Security Companies

ASIS International has proposed the quality management standard, with stakeholders’ comments due by Oct. 26, ANSI announced Oct. 4.

ASIS International, a member and accredited standards developer of the American National Standards Institute, has submitted a proposal for a new International Organization for Standardization standard focused on quality management for private security companies. ANSI announced it Oct. 4 and said Oct. 26 is the deadline for stakeholders to submit comments to Steven Cornish, ANSI director of international policy (scornish@ansi.org).

The proposal seeks the adoption of American National Standard ANSI/ASIS.PSC.1:2012, Management System for Quality of Private Security Company Operations - Requirements with Guidance, as an ISO management system standard. It emphasizes establishing auditable criteria and meeting relevant local laws and international human rights agreements.

The standard doesn't apply to private military companies, which work in military settings and offer direct tactical military assistance.

Comments received by ANSI will be presented to the ANSI ISO Council along with a recommended ANSI position on the proposal.

ASIS prepared a justification study for the proposal that says the demand for and use of private security companies is growing. "Clients are not only governments (approximately 30% of the market) but also non-governmental organizations, aid and development agencies, private companies (particularly mining, drilling and extraction companies) and transport industries," it states, adding that private security services of all sizes and types "play an important role in protecting public, private, and not-for-profit sector clients operating in circumstances of weakened governances where the rule of law has been undermined due to human or naturally caused events. Clients from the public, private and NGO sectors engage a broad-range of services from PSCs in support of commercial, humanitarian, diplomatic and military efforts, and to protect other activities including rebuilding of infrastructure. The scope and scale of the activities of PSCs include guarding and protection of persons and objects, such as convoys, facilities, designated sites, property or other placed (whether armed or unarmed), or any other activity for which the personnel of companies are required to carry or operate a weapon in the performance of their duties."

ISO currently does not have a technical committee that addresses issues related to private security services, particularly armed security services, according to the New Work Item Proposal drafted by ASIS.

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