Since 2004, the independently contracted security company, Securitas, has been employed by Seton Hall to keep the campus safe.
The University recently renewed a three-year contract with the company, which employs nearly 300,000 people worldwide, according to Securitas’s website.
Pat Linfante assistant vice president for Public Safety and Security discussed the process that prospective employees undergo in order to be hired by Securitas.
“To be an officer for Securitas, you have to be licensed by the state, complete the Security Officer’s Registration and finish 16 hours of training,” he said. “You also have to be fingerprinted, take a drug test, and have a background check done.”
Despite Securitas’ vetting, James Alex Fields Jr., the man charged with second-degree murder, three counts of malicious wounding and failure to stop in an accident that resulted in the death of Heather Heyer at the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., worked for Securitas, according to CNN.
Shortly after the events in Charlottesville, Securitas released a statement to the public saying that Fields had been fired from his job with the company.
After an employee is hired by Securitas, they are eligible to be assigned to a worksite.
Linfante went on to describe how Securitas was brought to Seton Hall’s campus.
“Throughout the year, security companies reach out asking if they can have the opportunity to bid the next time the University’s contract is up,” he said.
After that, the university proceeds to announce when the contract has expired, the companies bid and the University decides which security company they will hire based on their own vetting, which consists of everything Securitas screens for minus fingerprinting. Once this process is over, SHU decides which company it will hire.
Although Securitas vets their employees thoroughly, some people, like Fields, surprise them.
At Seton Hall, the university has the jurisdiction to let a Securitas employee go despite the company being independently contracted.
Linfante went on to describe the process of letting an employee go at Seton Hall.
“We tell the site manager who works for Securitas – he or she takes care of payroll, uniforms, and any additional training,” he said. “We tell them that the employee does not fit at Seton Hall and they handle it from there.”
Linfante said this situation arises occasionally. Things like falling asleep while on the job and being inappropriate with a student would constitute being fired by Seton Hall.
“We don’t tolerate anyone who doesn’t follow our rules,” he said.
Isabel Soisson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.