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Molly Meacher Resigns

by msecadm4921

Molly Meacher, chairman of the Security Industry Authority, has resigned.

The December 5 announcement was sudden enough to leave the SIA having to find an acting chairman from the SIA board before a search for a successor. Besides chief executive John Saunders, Mrs Meacher had been the public face of the authority, launched in April 2003. She and Mr Saunders had been the first appointed to the body, in March 2002. While the Government has done its best to put a brave face on the resignation, it leaves the SIA without a most senior figure just as the first licences – for door staff – are to be rolled out by region. A new chairman will have to get up to speed quickly to face likely troubles – flak over possible delays for criminal record checks from the Criminal Records Bureau; and inevitable grumbling over the cost of licences and training, despite the recent agreement with the Learning and Skills Council to pay £102 towards each applicant’s training (but only for England, not Wales). The SIA however has put cost of 30 hours of door training at £250 to £350. Doubts abound too about the other sector due to be licenced, wheel clampers, where the most basic details – such as how many are out there to be licenced – are lacking. Hazel Blears, Home Office Minister responsible for the SIA, said the resignation was accepted ‘with regret’. She added: ‘Molly Meacher has made a significant contribution to the establishment of the authority over the past 20 months, and played a vital part in preparing the SIA for the start of door supervisor licensing in March.’ Mrs Meacher did not comment.

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