Effective October 1, it will be mandatory for the more than 300 registered private security companies in Jamaica to make salary deductions on behalf of security guards in their employ, to facilitate the self-contributory health insurance scheme that was announced in November last year. Executive director of the Private Security Regulation Authority (PSRA), Rosalyn Monteith Campbell, explained that this became necessary because, of the approximately 4,000 guards who have registered under the scheme, only 402 have been fully paid up to allow the insurance to commence. According to Monteith Campbell, the scheme, which was launched eight months ago and was scheduled to become effective in April, only got off the ground in July.
“The PSRA has been facilitating the process, while we try to work with the companies generally to do the salary deductions to allow for the constant payment to ensure that the scheme is viable; however, this has been a difficulty,” she said. Therefore, the decision has been taken by the board of directors of the PSRA, and mandated by Government, that salary deductions in relation to the health insurance for the private security industry, specifically the security guards, will be mandatory
What this means is that when security companies go to renew their licences, and new companies are registering for the first time, they will be required to provide proof that all the security guards within their employment have health insurance. “They need to provide that proof in order for their licence to operate to be renewed, or for new companies to be registered,” Monteith Campbell said.According to executive director of the Private Security Regulation Authority (PSRA), Rosalyn Monteith Campbell, security guards have expressed that they want the self-contributory health insurance fee to be deducted from their salary, but the more than 300 registered private security companies have been reluctant to support the process. What the PSRA has done, in the interim, is set up an account for guards to deposit their payments. “Also, the PSRA has been collecting money at our office to facilitate the startup of the process. This is not practical, and it is also an administratively uncomfortable situation for us to handle,” Monteith Campbell said.