The Office of Transport Security (OTS) has set up a working group including industry representatives to review and recommend changes to security screener accreditation. I sat on the first OTS committee in reviewing the training of screening officers which started in 2015 and resulted in the recommendations for the new requirements being made by the Inspector of Transport Security in 2016.

These changes are welcome and offer a baseline competency for screening officers engaged in border control security screening. As the risks are ever increasing and the role of security screening becomes more and more challenging an escalated level of training and competency is critical. The changes also reflect the additional skills that are required as imaging techniques and equipment advance.

Whether you are an airport, port or port facility operator engaged in screening operations, you will need to monitor announcements from OTS. Testing has been conducted on numerous airports around the country with the reasons being recorded.

All airport, air cargo and maritime security screening staff will be affected, and I recommend you stay aware and prepare for the new screening measures.

There will be a new training qualification including on-the-job experience and screening officers will have to undergo an annual accreditation.

Baseline training is now involved in reviewing the training requirements. Given our involvement with the subject we are monitoring developments and we will be ready to respond with a revised training package that we are providing to our staff and the industry. The new qualification will replace the Certificate II in Security Operations so we are assisting our clients in their planning. These changes will take place in the second half of 2018 or early 2019 pending legislative changes.

Our trainers will be mapping the new accreditation requirements against the current qualification so we will be ready to service our own staff requirements and those of our clients.

The good news is there will be a grandfather clause so people who are working in the industry need not panic!

If you want more information or are interested to be included on updates, please email us on [email protected] and we’ll put you on our database.

Harley Sparke, Executive Chairman.