Vertical Markets

Licensing SAVI

by Mark Rowe

Police Crime Prevention Initiatives (Police CPI), the UK police-owned body, has launched its latest crime prevention initiative: Licensing Security & Vulnerability Initiative (Licensing SAVI). It brings together guidance, standards and advice that licensed premises need to meet the requirements of Responsible Authorities in England and Wales. That can help demonstrate compliance with the Licensing Act 2003 and promote the law’s four Licensing Objectives.

Developed at the request of the Home Office and backed by the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), Licensing SAVI seeks to reduce the risk of crime, help raise standards in licensed premises and provide consistent licensing information. It’s available in an online self-assessment, to give management practices and operational security as well as some practical examples. It includes covid-19 safety guidance.

Providing personalised written advice and recommendations, Licensing SAVI is confidential to licensees but can be shared with the Responsible Authorities. Venues that complete the self-assessment will receive a Star-Rating. Licensees can then apply for Licensing SAVI accreditation and an award, which will show their Star-Rating and can be displayed at their premises. PCPI says that the scheme can also:

– save licensees time by reducing the need to arrange separate meetings with Responsible Authorities;
– help prioritise spend and build on good practice; and
– provide guidance to develop staff training.

Licensing SAVI will be rolled out to police forces and councils within respective force areas. Licensing SAVI’s Business Manager is Mark Morgan, a former Merseyside Police Superintendent. He said: “I believe Licensing SAVI is a major milestone for the licensing industry in England and Wales and will help provide safe and secure venues for staff, customers and the local communities. We have worked with licensed premises throughout the development of Licensing SAVI to ensure the self-assessment is the very best it can be.

“Licensing SAVI will help licensed premises from start-up businesses to established operators, from single independent premises to groups of venues, and from country pubs to large city nightclubs. Licensing SAVI gives licensees a heads-up on the expectations of the Responsible Authorities. This is the first time all the licensing information has been pulled together into one single on-line source – avoiding the need for licensed premises to find out from different organisations what they are required to do to comply with the Licensing Act 2003 and promote the Licensing Objectives.”

Mark added that its launch is timely because it can become part of a business recovery plan as licensed premises prepare to reopen as pandemic restrictions are eased. He said: “Licensed venues are likely to need to recruit new staff, re-skill new and existing staff who may have been furloughed, and re-visit their business plans for what could be a significant demand from customers.”

Photo by Mark Rowe; Bricklayers Arms, Fitzrovia, central London, summer 2020 afternoon.

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