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Security boss slams use of zero-hours contracts

04 August 2016

A statement has been issued by Magenta Security managing director Abbey Petkar criticising the use of zero-hours contracts within the security sector.

He has issued a previous warning that organisations employing security companies need to conduct further checks on working conditions for staff.

Mr Petkar believes that not enough is being done and says this is putting both security guards and customers at risk.

"The current situation allows anyone to set up a security firm," he said.

"All they need is a couple of guards with SIA licenses. These guards are usually self-employed and on zero contract hours, which is where the problem lies and is something that needs to be addressed," said Mr Petkar.

He further stated that security guards are on zero hours and paid minimum wage or less, pay no National Insurance and do not receive holiday or sick pay.

"And they have no support from a control room and no back-up if they need it," he continued.

"And the situation gets even worse for the customer, who may not be aware of the consequences until it is too late."

Mr Petkar said self-employed security guards have "no protection, no guarantees and no insurance cover" while on site, meaning the customer "would be held accountable".

"And it would just take one big claim to tarnish the whole industry for years to come," he said.

"If you are able to provide employees with secure and quality employment then the likelihood is that you will get more from your workforce.

"Zero-hours contracts do not allow employees to build decent careers for themselves and should be condemned," said Mr Petkar.

Zero-hours contracts are used by a number of companies in different sectors and have received criticism for providing no guarantee of work, allowing workers to be paid on the numbers of hours worked.

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