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“Cheating” provides government subsidies

“Cheating” provides government subsidies for security company

Unite Union has requested the New Zealand Qualifications Authority investigate the provision of training for security guards at Allied Security where staff undergoing training have been supplied with the answers to fill in “in their own words”

Following an email to site supervisors the staff undergoing training were provided with the Assessor Guides from which to copy the answers into their training booklets.

One of our members refused to complete the booklets by copying answers because she said it was “cheating” . She complained to the Union and we are now taking this up with the New Zealand Qualification Authority.

Unite has copies of the Assessor Guides (answers) and student booklets provided to these guards.

The email indicates the company was putting pressure on for the completion of the booklets so the staff could receive their NZQA credits, at which point the company could claim hundreds of dollars per staff member in government subsidies through the ETITO (Electotechnology Industry Training Organisation) which overseas security industry training.

Anecdotally it seems training practices across much of the industy are substandard. We are asking NZQA to conduct an industry-wide audit and remove incentives to cheat the system.

This example highlights an industry which has been deregulated and deprofessionalised in New Zealand.

Unlike most countries, it is very easy to set up a security business in New Zealand and, unlike other countries, an employee needs no training whatever to work as a security guard.

Despite this security guards are often in dangerous situation and vulnerable to attack. In recent weeks several guards have been attacked.

As a consequence security guards are typically untrained and paid at rates close to the minimum wage. To gain a decent income they must work long, anti-social and anti-family hours of work – typically this could be five or sometimes six 12 hour shifts from 6pm to 6am each week.

Unite is campaigning to make industry-wide changes where staff are trained properly (as in Australia - 80 hours) and paid decent rates of pay with a proper career path.

“Cheating the system is out! "

ENDS

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