Monday, July 20, 2009

More Security Personnel Than Cops

You want more proof that South Africa is the crime capital of the world?

There are more security personnel employed in Australia than police officers and they could be doing more in terms of cutting crime, a study has revealed.

The Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) said the growth of the private security sector was a worldwide phenomena, with Australia trailing the global average of 348 private security officers per 100,000 population.

Australia, with 266 security personnel and 226 police per 100,000 people, still ranks far behind the world leader, South Africa, where there are 900 security personnel per 100,000 people.

The AIC study said figures from the 2006 census showed there were 52,768 Australians who listed security as their principal type of employment, a 41 per cent rise on the 37,372 in 1996.

In the same period, police numbers rose from 39,225 to 44,898, a 14.5 per cent increase.

Census data shows police are generally better educated, better paid and younger than those in the security industry.

The AIC said there had been a general decline in crime in Australia, although crime rates remained relatively high by comparison with the rest of the developed world.

"Not withstanding the alleged omnipresence of security, research indicates that only around 45 per cent of Australian households have basic security measures in place, suggesting considerable scope for a greater contribution from the industry to domestic crime prevention," the study said.

"It is clear from international research that premises with security have significantly lower rates of criminal victimisation than those without and that growth in security is one of the most important influences on falling crime rates.

"At the same time, there is a widening gap worldwide between victimisation of the rich and poor relative to their ability to afford security."

The data included in the study covered the security industry, included private investigators, crowd controllers and debt collectors but not those in security management positions or who held part-time security jobs or who installed security equipment.

1 Opinion(s):

Ranger Tom said...

Secuirty officers are needed some places, but what I saw as a police officer was this; Most private security companies never conducted backgroud checks on the guards they hired, and many times they had convicted felons working for them.

In a lot of instances, this was akin to having a junkie running a pharmacy.

With proper training and background checks, the security field can be a huge help in crime prevention.