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MNCHEN / BERLIN (dpa-AFX) – No passenger controls at the airports, no football games, fewer cash transfers: German security service providers are currently breaking down entire lines of business – and at the same time there is a lack of staff elsewhere. According to the industry association BDSW, every third employee is reported sick. But regulations made it difficult to use the workers flexibly. Market leader Securitas now has a brand letter to the Chancellor Angela Merkel and all prime ministers wrote and demanded remedy.
If you see the many files in front of supermarkets, drugstores or hospitals, you might think that the security industry is one of the winners of the crisis. With 267,000 employees, it had a turnover of 9.3 billion euros last year. However, it generates just 4 percent of sales in retail – but 50 percent in property protection, 11 percent at airports and 7 percent with money transfers.
“The situation is most dramatic in terms of aviation security,” said Securitas spokesman Bernd Weiler. Where there is no more flying, no passengers or employees need to be checked. “We are now talking to the company councils about short-time work. What happens next depends on the duration of this crisis.”
“We get more orders from the grocery trade. But this cannot compensate for the slump in the high-quality aviation business. That only alleviates the pain,” says Ernst Steuger, managing director of the Nrnberger security and locksmith company, which is one of the top ten in the industry. “The first food companies are already dropping it down because they say it is too expensive or not necessary at all.” And then there is another problem: “We try to deploy employees elsewhere, but we are blocked because we cannot retrain,” says Steuger.
Aviation security assistants are highly qualified, checked by the Office for the Protection of the Constitution and the federal police. “But we cannot use them in a refugee home or other object, for example,” says Weiler. “Because the trade code Paragraph 34 a stipulates that they give a technical instruction or at the IHK
-Have passed the test. And in many IHKs there are now none
Courses and no exams. “
Securitas is now quickly demanding a transition solution from the federal and state governments. Politicians must recognize the industry as systemically important so that employees can go to their places of work despite the fact that there are no contacts and that their children can go to emergency daycare.
BDSW spokeswoman Silke Zller says that the situation is also threatening for money and advertising transports. Retail and guest houses are closed. “Many customers in supermarkets and drugstores are now making contactless payments with cards. The providers of electronic payment methods quickly sensed their chance and are now offering retailers flat rates for card payments, for example.” In addition, the limit for payments without entering a PIN had been increased.
Prosegur is the market leader for money transports – 4000 employees fill ATMs, deliver change and collect daily income. At the beginning of the crisis, the demand for cash had risen sharply. But now “we are of course seeing a decline in service in the retail sector,” says Managing Director Jochen Werne. Reduction of overtime and short-time work is still sufficient. “Our absolute goal is to avoid operational redundancies.”
Security at concerts, general meetings, trade fairs or football games is not needed at the moment. “For example, we play all of Schalke and Bayer Leverkusen’s home games, which is now completely gone,” says Weiler. “Museums have also closed. And when entire administrations have moved to their home office, fewer people are needed at the company’s headquarters and reception.”
Whether employees could be deployed elsewhere “also varies widely from region to region,” says Zller. “There is, for example, a security company that needed people for ten branches of a local supermarket chain but cannot find them.” The sick leave in the industry is otherwise on average 6, now 30 percent. Even if most were only careful and did not want to infect anyone: “The sick leave for 14 days simply by calling the doctor certainly contributes to this.” / Rol / DP / fba