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IG: Contract security guards ‘dozed' on job

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  • IG: Contract security guards ‘dozed' on job

    Contract guards at Social Security Administration headquarters and other Baltimore facilities dozed on the job, left their posts unstaffed and had "excessive errors" on forms used to track work hours, according to a newly released audit by the agency's inspector general.

    Under a 2008 contract, worth up to $242 million over 10 years, Paragon Systems handles security at the agency's main complex, National Computer Center and Security West buildings, according to the audit report, conducted between January and November of last year.

    Based on 221 observations of security posts at the three facilities, the IG found all guards armed and in uniform. In some instances, however, guards were not checking identification of people entering buildings, were dozing or were loitering in personal conversations, the report said.

    The inspector general also found numerous corrections on the registers used to record work hours, which raised a concern "that the guards were crossing out the actual time they left a post and writing in another time to conceal an open post." In a performance review running from April 2009 through March 2010, an SSA contracting officer rated Paragon's quality of service as "poor."

    The inspector general cited no security breaches that resulted from the failings flagged by its auditors. In a statement released Monday, the company called the report misleading and said that it did not reflect steps taken since last spring. Those steps include assigning an onsite quality control monitor, replacing the project manager and realigning corporate oversight of the contract, the statement said.

    Paragon, based in Chantilly, Va., is owned by Pinkerton Government Services, a subsidiary of the Swedish firm Securitas AB. Paragon's board includes former Drug Enforcement Administration chief Asa Hutchinson, former Rep. Michael Oxley, R-Ohio, and Ralph Basham, former commissioner of Customs and Border Protection, according to its website.

    Among five recommendations, the inspector general urged the Social Security Administration to require Paragon to strictly enforce post procedures and ensure that employees comply with sign-in and sign-out procedures. SSA managers either agreed with the recommendations or to take other steps to deal with the problems spelled out in the report.
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    Where was FPS since they should be working with the guards?
    I don't answer recruitment messages....

  • #2
    Originally posted by orlandofed5-0 View Post
    Where was FPS since they should be working with the guards?
    From talking to the local FPS folks, they are down a ton of folks......and don't have enough to coverage....and stated it was like that everywhere.....

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    • #3
      Their website doesn't show starting pay for their guards. But based on people I know, those security guards don't typically pay half bad. No real excuse for any of that

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Dingo990 View Post
        Their website doesn't show starting pay for their guards. But based on people I know, those security guards don't typically pay half bad. No real excuse for any of that
        In Iowa they get about $22 per hour.-------Different company but that changes depending on who wins the contract for that time period.

        Around here FPS isn't around much------------------they show up once in a while to do spot checks but since almost all the Security Officers are retired LEO/Corrections, they tend to leave them alone quite a bit. FPS has an office in Des Moines that covers the whole state.
        Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

        My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

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        • #5
          No excuse for mistakes on the 139's, If we make more than two mistakes on a sheet, we have to redo the entire sheet. And we are not allowed to over-write any mistakes, no white outs. Typical mistakes are writing in 2400 instead of 0000 for start of the midnight shift, or signing in on the wrong sheet, or failure to sign in (forgot).

          Open post is bad because the company gets fined for any open post time. I don't know why the guards would be changing this, sounds more like a management problem to me.

          Some times management makes a dumb decision, like sending an injured officer to the urgent care and not filling his spot. this results in open post time. Or not scheduling an officer to relieve another officer at the end of a 12 hour shift, or double scheduling an officer at two different posts at the same time. mistakes happen, but are should to be caught by the time the actual schedule occurs. If mistakes are continuous and not being caught, someone needs to hire a new schedular.

          Really sounds like a management problem to me.

          As for the sleeping on the job, it may happen from time to time, but if it is chronic or intentional, they need to be firing these people.
          Though their numbers are many, as the grass upon the field, we will count them at the end of the day.

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