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Security Giant: Police Outsourcing ‘Different From Olympics’

Under-fire company defends its record of providing services directly to the police

Beleaguered security firm G4S has defended its record in the outsourcing of policing services following its Olympic Games staffing crisis – claiming the two are completely different concepts.

The company was lambasted at a Home Affairs Select Committee hearing on July 17, following its failure to provide thousands of security personnel for the Games.

But members of the committee said the firm’s performance also raised questions about its future involvement in public service contracts, such as those with the police.

Asked whether the problems would harm the company’s bid to play a greater role in the Police Service, G4S Chief Executive Nick Buckles said contracts “including the one with Lincolnshire Police” were longer-term and easier to implement.

Mr Buckles told MPs during the hearing: “We have regular monthly reviews on (police) contracts. They are exemplary – We have a very strong track record on delivery.”

The CEO said that the 2012 Olympics contract had been a massive undertaking, and admitted that the company had regretted signing up to the deal. He added: “It is completely different to how we usually do government outsourcing.”

Mr Buckles added that G4S had the potential to add significant value to police forces by taking on back office functions and introducing the latest technology.

He added that, in its history in dealing with outsourcing contracts, G4S had never had to use public services such as the police or military to fill staff shortages.

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