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Opposition wants Government to quickly pay money owed to security companies

The parliamentary opposition is urging the government to indicate a timeline for honouring its financial obligations to security companies.

There is concern that several ministries, departments and agencies might soon be without private security guards if the government fails to pay outstanding sums to security companies.

The state constitutes 65 per cent of business clients for security companies.

At a media briefing last Friday the Jamaica Society for Industrial Security disclosed that the cost of security services had increased by almost 50 per cent since the court ruled that private security guards are employees and not independent contractors.

It said some companies will find it difficult to meet their payroll as a consequence of this development.

Opposition Spokesman on Finance Julian Robinson told Radio Jamaica News that the government should not allow the matter to be drawn out.

On September 23 the Supreme Court ruled in a matter of the National Housing Trust versus Marksman limited, that guards engaged by security companies to provide third-party services are employees and not independent contractors.

The ruling is applicable to all private security companies that engage security officers as independent contractors.