The Minister for Justice, Helen McEntee TD, has today welcomed the Annual Report of the Private Security Authority (PSA) for 2019. The report was submitted to the Minister by the PSA and was brought to the Government on 2 November prior to it being laid before the Houses of the Oireachtas.

Welcoming the annual report, Minister McEntee said,

“The Private Security Authority is an important independent agency under the aegis of my Department, which is responsible for the licensing and regulation of the private security industry. The Authority is responsible for a broad remit ranging from cash in transit, to the security personnel you see in many businesses, to locksmiths, alarm installation and monitoring companies.”

The Minister also noted that,

“The Private Security Services (Amendment) Bill 2020 was approved by Government in November 2019 for drafting and is a priority for me, and for the Government. The Bill will bring the regulation and licensing of security personnel enforcing court orders within the remit of the Private Security Authority.

“My officials have been working intensively on this Bill, together with the Office of Parliamentary Counsel, and the drafting is now well advanced.”

The PSA Annual Report for 2019 acknowledges the security industry’s continued growth in line with overall economic growth. The industry’s turnover in 2019 is estimated to be in the region of €782,032,000. The PSA provide licenses for both contractors and for individuals, processing almost 15,000 applications in 2019.

The Minister also welcomed the publication of two surveys undertaken on behalf of the PSA by Amarach Research. The first is into the views of contractor licence holders on regulations and the private security industry. The second survey focussed on public awareness of regulation in the private security industry and recognition of the PSA as the industry regulator. The Minister said,

“This is the first time the PSA has conducted research of this nature. It will assist the PSA in developing future strategies for the benefit of the public and security industry.”

Minister McEntee also noted the considerable impact which Covid-19 has had on the security services industry.

“As a result of the pandemic, large sections of the industry such as event security are suspended and many small contractors are under strain. I am pleased with the actions that the PSA has taken to date to help contractors and I know that they will continue to look at ways to assist licence holders during these difficult times.”