Since 9/11, the threat of terror attacks has been a part of life. Time and time again events and crowded places across the world have been attacked. In the UK it has been the attack at the Manchester Arena during an Ariana Grande concert with the deaths of so many, along with the tireless efforts of Martyn Hett’s mother, that has been the catalyst for the government to look at what can be done to protect our crowded spaces and events. The result is Protect Duty.
Protect Duty, otherwise known as Martyn’s Law, could soon come into effect. This legislation will be directed at those responsible for Publicly Accessible Locations (PAL), ensuring they take sensible measures to protect their event, staff and attendees from something similar from occurring.
What is the Impact of Protect Duty
The impact Protect Duty could have is enormous, at its heart stadiums, concerts, sporting events, festivals, conferences and exhibitions to name a few will all be impacted by it. Similar to the need to adhere to rigorous health and safety legislation, what the Protect Duty does is add the same weight to counter terrorism and security measures.Venues and events will need to conduct reviews to understand the risks of terrorist attacks and to take proportionate and reasonable measures to mitigate against them.
What does it mean for accreditation?
Protect Duty is all about security, and this goes hand in hand with accreditation and access control. We have listed out four of the key points where a robust accreditation procedure can feed into Protect Duty.
Knowing who is in your space, pre, during and post event
One of the most lethal threats venues, stadiums and events face is the insider threat. Having someone intent on malice with access to your venue or event can have disastrous consequences. Controlling these types of threats is all about ensuring levels of personnel security and good accreditation policies and practices are in place so each person is fully accredited and cleared to work onsite.
Carrying out Vulnerability Assessments of their operating place and spaces
Are there more vulnerable areas of the venue or stadium the event is taking place in and do you need to restrict who has access to them. By understanding which are your vulnerable areas, you can start planning on restricting access. By integrating your access control with your accreditation you can restrict areas to only those that should be there. For example Press to the press lounge, acts to dressing rooms, players and officials to pitch side or catering to the kitchen areas.
Have levels of personnel security in place
Weave levels of personnel security into accreditation processes into a counter terrorism plan. Does your accreditation process include the collection of all relevant information and can you make an informed decision on whether anyone who is scheduled to be onsite during an event poses a risk? This could be as simple as not having a “Right to Work” confirmation or a DBS check for someone. Knowing this could dramatically reduce the insider threat.
Daily, Incident and Crisis Communication
Does your accreditation process include the ability to distribute key information to all staff, contractors and others onsite? As we have seen over the past two years with constantly changing COVID-19 legislation, being able to disseminate this information is key to ensuring smooth running on the event day. Being able to communicate with staff during an incident or a crisis and to have an audit of those communications is key.
The Protect Duty will have a big impact upon the world of live events, it will bring a more controlled and uniformed approach in how they operate and how they are secured. To help you assess the impact of Protect Duty upon your venue or event, our second blog on the topic will provide you with a Security Audit Check List. Make sure you keep an eye out for it.
If you want to know more, download our whitepaper for a complete overview on what Protect Duty means for accreditation.