Can you put a price on the safety of your staff?

Recorded crime increased by 10 percent from June 2017 to June 2018, reaching its highest level for the last 13 years (Office for National Statistics). Violent crimes surged by 19 per cent according to recent figures, and in particular knife crime. For the fourth year in a row knife crime has risen, by 12 per cent during this period, to nearly 40,000 offences.

Police recorded data and NHS data tell us that:

  • There is a continued rise in the number of police recorded offences involving knives or sharp instruments
  • The number of admissions to hospital in England for assaults involving a sharp instrument has been increasing
  • The number of homicides increased following a long-term decline

Many of these higher-harm types of violence tend to be concentrated in metropolitan areas.

During the same period, there has been a significant decrease in police on the streets; since 2010, police officers have been cut by more than 20,000, and as of 2015 there has been a decrease of 15% in local policing. To make matters worse, less than 9 per cent of recorded offences resulted in culprits being charged or summoned to court.

With the risk of getting caught decreasing, the risk of innocent people getting hurt increases. A significant increase in the carrying of knives and violent crime, particularly in densely populated urban areas, is very likely to result in the overflowing of violent crime into public buildings and businesses.

The carrying of weapons suggests a readiness to use them, and stressful situations can clearly provoke rage and violent reactions in some individuals. Situations like this in-turn can develop into an attack and injury for staff members carrying out their organisational roles, which happened recently to a job centre in Cannon street; a staff member was stabbed, and another woman injured when a man, armed with a kitchen knife stormed into a building.

Those managing organisations and businesses usually have both a desire and other motivating reasons for protecting their staff, ranging from moral care for colleagues, to protection of the organisation from the costs that come from an incident, such as staff sick leave, incident investigation, and costs from potential litigation, not to mention a legal duty to protect staff from foreseeable risk.

The challenge is finding security measures to put in place that are cost effective, match the operation and cosmetic appearance of the business or organisation, and are proportionate to the risk.

There are actually many cost effective protection solutions available, from specialist suppliers such as Safetell Ltd (trading since 1989) who manufacture a wide range of tailored, bespoke, and standard security solutions and products to match organisational need.

Many of these solutions, such as Safetell Security Glazing UJ, UH, UL, UG and CounterShield are retrofittable to existing counterwork and provide protection against manual attack. Safetell Fast Rising Screens and Bullet resistant glazing and counterworks offer higher levels of protection. Fast Rising Screens and CounterShield both enable open counter trading and staff protection when required. For genuine access control to premises or secure areas, a wide range of security portals or cash and document transfer units are available from Safetell.

For Safetell’s full range of attack, bullet and blast resistant doors, walls, glazing and security portals see the Safetell website.