Monday, 22 March 2021 21:04

Protect Duty consultation - a must-view online debate from the Association of Security Consultants

Are you planning to take part in the Protect Duty consultation but unsure exactly how it will affect you and the organisations you work with? The Association of Security Consultants (ASC) is offering members, security industry colleagues and end-users the chance to attend a free online debate, providing invaluable help and guidance around the Home Office proposals before you make your submission.  

The event, on Monday, 29th March at 10:00hrs will include presentations from key figures in government, commercial and legal sectors.  Hosted by ASC chair Joe Connell, our session will provide a detailed insight into the Duty’s principal aims, as well as offering plenty of opportunity to put questions to the guest speakers.  The event will launch with an input from, Shaun Hipgrave, Director for Protect and Prepare at the Office for Security and Counter Terrorism (OSCT), and one of the Protect Duty consultation leads. Shaun will provide background to the Protect Duty and outline what is being considered for inclusion in new legislation, as well as what the consultation process is seeking to achieve.

Next, we will hear from the commercial sector with Bob Eastwood, operations and security advisor at the English Football League (EFL). Bob will give an overview of the approach being taken by football clubs at their 72 venues across England.Finally, we will get a view from leading licensing and disciplinary lawyer Jeremy Phillips QC about the legal implications for organisations and individuals likely to be covered by a Protect Duty, and those advising them on security matters.  "The aim of the debate is to equip ASC members and colleagues with the facts they need before submitting their views to the consultation," says Joe Connell.  "The Protect Duty will have a huge impact on our profession. We need to make sure our voice is heard by government, but we also need to ensure that we, as security experts, have a clear understanding of what the duty is proposing before make our submissions."

The government first announced plans to introduce a law requiring owners and operators of public spaces and venues to put in place measures to keep the public safe from a terrorist attack in February 2020.The move aimed to deliver on the manifesto commitment to improve the safety and security of public venues and spaces and the new ‘Protect Duty’ reflected on lessons learned following the terrorist attacks in 2017, as well as more recent attacks. The proposals also follow discussions with victims’ groups such as the Martyn’s Law campaign, established by Figen Murray whose son was tragically killed in the Manchester Arena attack.

The new law would require venue operators to consider the risk of a terrorist attack and take ‘proportionate and reasonable measures’ to prepare for and protect the public from such an attack. This could include increased physical security and incident response planning, as well as training and exercising for staff on what to do in the event of an attack.  The unique consultation on how the Protect Duty can make the public safer at publicly accessible locations will run until July 2021 and seeks to invite submissions from those who own or operate at publicly accessible locations or others that a Protect Duty would potentially affect.

Further details about the consultations can be accessed via

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