In today’s political and social climate, volunteering to be on the front lines during a major security situation is not a task for the faint hearted.

Every day, men and women are putting their lives at risk by stepping forward and protecting people and places they know and love, and people and places they’ve never met, or never experienced.

At one point, it may have been a running joke to be a ‘mall cop’ (see Paul Blart), but nowadays, these people are often first on the scene to some horrendous events. Fortunately in Canada, we have yet to bare witness to some of the types of atrocities the rest of the world has been faced with. Ideally, we never will have to experience anything like them. However – in the event things change – there are people that show up everyday, prepared for the unexpected and very much unfathomable.

While our first responders generally have exceptional response times – they can’t be everywhere at once. In a day with cutbacks as well, there are some areas that are definitely more well equipped then others. They will show up to the scene within minutes – however already there are our security professionals, and upstanding civilians who have ignored the flight response so much of us are built with, and have chosen to fight. They stay back, protect and aid the victims and witnesses. They keep themselves at risk. In Las Vegas – these individuals repeatedly ran against the crowds to pull out the wounded. They quite literally kept themselves in the line of fire to do what they could do to help.

In Manchester, although the situation was an individual suicide bomber, people had no idea if there were more then one person involved, if there would be more blasts, or gunshots to follow or multiple attackers. Anything could have happened. There again, people stayed. If they didn’t have first aid experience, they held hands. They hugged. They talked. There is great power in positive human connection.

There are of course two sides to this argument. Are these ‘hero’s’ and people helping? Or are they potentially adding to the issue by adding themselves as targets.

I’m of the firm belief that if you can help – by all means – help. We have tremendous security individuals and first responders in this country – but no one should ever turn away from assisting others when they are able. I would love to think that I would help in whatever way I could. This being said, I feel my flight response far outweighs my fight and I would do what I could while getting out as quickly as possible. So for those that take the risk – I commend them.

In order to be a certified security guard in Canada, you must also have active first aid certification. These people that show up everyday prepared to fight, and protect, also possess an active interest in helping people as much as they can. They show up to work. They ensure everything is safe and everyone is safe. They continually monitor and assess. They patrol. They watch. They wait. In the event anything happens, they’re there first.

They rush to the scene. They defend and protect if the situation is called for. Then they help. They help witnesses, wounded, anyone affected. They offer first aid if need be. Their personal lives, opinions, and beliefs are left behind. A security persons role is unified. Prevent, Protect, React, Respond.

Colour, Religion, Political affiliation and Preference. Nothing matters. Everyone gets the same treatment. Everyone gets the same response.

Yes. Some of these individuals are in this line of work under the false assumption that the pay is extremely lucrative. You’re potentially putting your life on the line so they should pay accordingly. This isn’t always the case. While the pay scale varies, like most organizations, unless you’re in management, you’re starting off at base pay. So if you think they’re in it for the money – think again.

Granted. Some may be in the security industry for the experience. A stepping stone to being a first responder – police officer usually. This often rings true and can be a great way to get a taste of how that industry ‘could’ be. This being said, security personnel, first responders, police officers and others are putting themselves on the front line. Just in varying degrees. Lets also keep in mind that in Canada, to be a proper licensed security guard does not give you the same rights as a police officer. Our security guards aren’t allowed to carry a gun. There are a lot of countries where its not uncommon to see security staff armed. Canada is definitely not one of them.

So before you go berating our security personnel for being anything other then a potential first responder, lets keep in mind that they too get up every morning, prepared for the unimaginable and ready to respond.


Guest Blogger Rayna Davies

Rayna Davies is a graduate and practitioner of Business Management.  She has developed an expertise in blogging, covering subjects like travel, world events and security.  Having grown up with a father who has developed an expertise in Physical Security and Executive Protection in the RCMP and two major corporations, she has personally observed and experienced many security details.  These experiences have included personally meeting HM Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister Jean Chretien and many celebrities.  She presently assists Sentinel Security in Executive Protection workshops and guest blogging and also assists Gloprosec Preventative Services in Intelligence gathering and Business Administration.  Her passions include World travel, having visited every continent.  She currently is on maternity leave and providing daily close protection for a baby and a toddler and spending time with her husband who is a Police Officer.