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Police Versus Private Security: Whom Do We Trust? (From Policing and Crime Prevention, P 31-52, 2002, Deborah Mitchell Robinson, ed, -- See NCJ-193592)

NCJ Number
Pamela A. Sexton-Alyea
Date Published
22 pages
This paper identifies the issues relating to the decision to choose between public and private security agencies.
The paper discusses the media and how they have presented both public and private security agencies. It also discusses the techniques both types of agencies use to address crime prevention. Issues in choosing a specific policing agency include: (1) armed versus unarmed guards; (2) salaries of private and public officers; (3) age of the officers; (4) level of education of the officers; (5) number of employees; and (6) union versus nonunion officers. The paper includes a historical overview of security, including definitions of public and private security, similarities and differences between the two, and legal considerations. Although security can be defined in many ways, the paper concentrates primarily on the basic concepts of safety, protection, and freedom from danger. The paper advises that security services need to devote extensive time and resources to hiring the right people, developing them, and striving to ensure they are the right people for the clients' needs. Boxes, references