As safe as their cargo: Unifor applauds Bill to develop national standards for armoured car industry

TORONTO, June 3, 2016 /CNW/ - Unifor, representing almost 2,000 armoured car employees in Canada, applauds the introduction of Bill C-285, which seeks to develop national standards for the industry.

"Make no mistake, the armoured car industry is a dangerous business and right now regulation is fragmented, with safety standards changing from jurisdiction to jurisdiction," said Unifor National President Jerry Dias. "Unifor has been campaigning for national safety protocols to keep armoured car employees as safe as their cargo."

Bill C-285, National Standards for the Armoured Transport of Currency and Valuables Act, was tabled as a private members bill by NDP MP Peter Julian. The bill calls for the federal government to consult with the provinces, territories and industry stakeholders to develop national standards regarding employee training, vehicle specifications, crew complements and safety equipment requirements.

Since 2000, there have been more than 85 attacks on armoured cars nationwide. In the past four years alone there have been 15 publicly-reported robberies resulting in multiple injuries and fatalities.

"Stronger, harmonized regulation is overdue," said Unifor National Representative Mike Armstrong. "We're seeing armoured car companies engage in price competition on the basis of lowered security standards. Inadequate training, smaller crews, protocols that involve all crew simultaneously leaving the vehicle, the use of non-armoured vehicles to transport valuables and in some cases even the use of unarmed personnel all increase the danger to employees and to the public."

Unifor calls on the federal government to:

  • Harmonize a federal regulatory framework
  • Create comprehensive federal safety standards and regulations for the armoured car sector
  • Establish standardized firearms, use of force and heavy vehicle training requirements
  • Develop mandatory crew complements based on level of risk
  • Regulate vehicle specifications
  • Institute compulsory use of bullet-proof vests

Additional information is available at http://www.unifor.org/safecargo

Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 310,000 workers.

SOURCE Unifor

For further information: please contact Unifor Communications National Representative Kathleen O'Keefe at Kathleen.OKeefe@unifor.org or 416-896-3303 (cell)


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