About Martin Gallagher

Professional Profile Corporate and private security specialist with proven experience in security, resiliency, physical risk and crisis management issues in the European and Emerging Market theatres. I am a former Royal Marine Commando serving on the anti terrorist team. I have a vast network and experience and solid background in the civilian sector operating globally in the security and investigations industries in the USA, EMEA and APAC theatres including hostile (Baghdad) and non-hostile environments. During my career I have been the principal close protection officer and security advisor to British and foreign royal families, diplomats, Blue Chip Companies, CEOs and celebrities. I have developed an expertise in managing security issues in a dynamic atmosphere of uncertainly and change. I also understand and respond to cultural sensitivities, local customs and laws relative to security and business issues.

Close Protection Professionals

Close Protection Professionals

Many Close Protection Professionals are up-skilling and undertaking (among others), counter/surveillance courses, weapons courses and advanced security driving courses.

The Security Industry Authority (SIA) in the UK has stipulated that in order to obtain a licence it is mandatory for applicants to be in possession of either a current First Aid at Work (FAW) or First Person On Scene intermediate (FPOSi) certificate. That said; when renewing an SIA CP licence, proof that the applicant has an in-date FAW/FPOSi certificate is not required, there are no means within the SIA to record this either.

In my first paragraph above, I mentioned that Close Protection Professionals are, indeed, up-skilling by doing other advanced courses; however, it has occurred to me that many are not renewing their FAW/FPOSi certificates prior to renewing their CP licence. Surely, it is important for the professional CPO to be up to date and hold a valid FAW certificate, otherwise why should this be stipulated as a requirement to obtain a licence in the first instance?

Most CP training companies will provide FAW/FPOSi training as part of the Close Protection course package. My question is, do they follow up with their students when their FAW certificates have expired?

In order for me to continue teaching First Aid, I have to requalify and renew my FAW certificate even though I am continually teaching the subject; shouldn't this apply to the Professional Close Protection Operator to be able to continue working in this field?

Although not obligatory, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and all awarding bodies strongly recommend that first aiders should undertake a minimum 3 hour refresher each year in order to keep first aid skills current. In most cases, having done a first aid course, the student will never have to revisit/review those skills until they need to re-qualify, that is to say, if they actually renew their certificate. Would the first aider be competent to deliver first aid when really needed?

My corporate clients have to ensure their first aiders’ certificates are renewed and, indeed, send them on annual refreshers. To comply with the Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974, employers must have the correct first aid facilities -based on a risk assessment (this includes first aiders and equipment) in their workplaces. If employers are found to be not complying with the Act they face prosecution and heavy fines.

Questions for thought:

  1. Is it due to lack of regulation that the professional CPO does not renew their FAW certificate?
  2. Is it the lack of time needed to re-qualify that prevents the CPO renewing?
  3. Is it the cost of the course that prevents the CPO renewing?
  4. Is it that the CPO feels a First Aid qualification is not important to renew a licence?
  5. Is your FAW/FPOSi certificate in date?
  6. Has your training company informed you that your First Aid certificate has or is about to expire?
  7. Have you renewed your FAW/FPOSi certificate?
  8. Would you be competent (Really) to deliver first aid when needed?
  9. If your FAW/FPOSi certificate is due to expire, will you renew it?

I’d be very interested to hear your thoughts on this issue either on this page or via email

Kindest regards

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Seecrypt Secure Communications CEO Mornay Walters on Privacy

Seecrypt Secure Communications CEO Mornay Walters on Privacy