On the third week of September, we come together to celebrate our everyday heroes and honor our security officers who tirelessly work to keep us safe day in and day out. It's National Security Officer Appreciation Week 2023, and we couldn't be more excited to show our gratitude and respect for these remarkable professionals who often go unrecognized.
Recognition and Empowerment
Security officers are the unsung heroes who safeguard our workplaces, schools, hospitals, malls, and public spaces. At PalAmerican Security, we know that every uniform represents action in the name of safety, and we take it upon ourselves to truly recognize and award the outstanding actions of our family of security professionals.
This year, we were proud to unveil our new employee recognition program that aligns perfectly with our CARE Culture, the CARE Awards! There are four values we celebrate: Being Curious, Being Accountable, Being Respectful and Being Exceptional. All categories come with a prestigious monetary reward, a certificate, a personal letter from PalAmerican's leadership, a special feature in the company-wide newsletter, and a distinguished spot in the CARE Award records.
Each month, PalAmericans across the country are nominated for the award that best fits their CARE action:
A Curious Award winner is someone who loves thinking creatively. They're always asking questions and finding ways to make things better. These folks go beyond their usual tasks to give outstanding customer service, bring positive change, and make things run smoother.
The Accountable Award seeks a steadfast, dedicated, and dependable team player. It's designed to honour Officers who are essential to their teams and valued for their consistent commitment. These security professionals consistently pour their best into their work, embodying the company's values with pride and honesty.
The Respectful Award centers on exceptional Customer Service. This person consistently fosters a positive atmosphere for colleagues and peers. They uphold high standards by presenting themselves impeccably in uniform and punctually attending shifts. They exhibit care for their team and embrace diversity, creating a harmonious workplace.
The Exceptional Award is usually a result of an outstanding action. This may be a situation where an Officer went above and beyond the call of duty in an exciting or unusual circumstance. The quick action, assessment and response from this individual will determine the worthiness of this award.
Security Award Programs
Another fantastic way to recognize our frontline security heroes is through prestigious award programs like the International Association for Healthcare Security and Safety (IHASS), Outstanding Security Performance Awards (OSPA), and more.
When we acknowledge the hard work of security officers, we boost their morale and let them know that their contributions are valued. This, in turn, can improve their job satisfaction and dedication, leading to even better service for our communities.
Recently, Security Supervisor Lori Tavarez was honored with the prestigious International Association for Healthcare & Safety’s (IAHSS) Valor Award. The Valor Award is presented to a person for a selfless and/or courageous act taken at the risk of their own life with full awareness of the danger involved.
Lori was presented with the award for successfully stopping a man from harming babies in a NICU. Read more about Lori’s
incredible achievement here!
Regional Director Johnny Boykins chatted with Field Manager, Donna Fey, who specializes in Armed Security at rest areas.
Johnny Boykins: When did you start working in security, and what brought you to the profession?
Donna Fey: I began working as an armed security professional in 2017. I was hired to perform specialized security functions at the Florida National Guard Headquarters. Since then, I have worked on a wide variety of contracts with various companies. While becoming acquainted with the field of security, I was also serving in the field of law enforcement. I enjoy the private sector for several reasons. It's a field that is rapidly evolving, presents unique opportunities to serve others, and affords many the ability to learn about the field from a business standpoint.
JB: What is a typical day like working in Armed Security in rest areas?
DF: A typical shift consists of much more than performing basic tour functions. This type of contract requires a variety of skills and attention to detail. Officers perform lifesaving actions, assist motorists in need, de-escalate heated situations, enforce property rules, and so much more. If our officers are vigilant and prepared to assist, then they'll find a lot of interesting security opportunities at a rest area. In the last six months alone, officers working this contract have come in contact with active domestic disturbances, people under the influence of narcotics, DUIs, property damage, serious medical emergencies, people in crisis, abandoned/stranded persons, vulnerable adults, located firearms/knives, and responded to explosions, fires, floods, overturned vehicles, power outages, traffic crashes, gas leaks, etc.
JB: What do you think is the most underappreciated part of your job?
DF: I think the most underappreciated part of this job is how much time, knowledge, and dedication it requires. The officers working this contract deserve so much more recognition and I am thankful to have a part in helping them receive it.
How You Can Show Your Appreciation
Whether stationed at your local school, workplace, shopping mall, hospital, residential building, or any other place, security professionals are a crucial part of the fabric that holds our society together. Here are some great ways to show them how much you appreciate and recognize their work:
- Say Thank You: It might seem simple, but a heartfelt "thank you" can go a long way. If you encounter a security officer during this week, take a moment to express your appreciation for their dedication.
- Write Notes of Gratitude: Encourage your friends, family, and colleagues to write notes of appreciation to security officers in your area. Even a small note can brighten their day and let them know that their efforts are recognized.
- Social Media Shoutouts: Share stories, anecdotes, and pictures of security officers you encounter on social media. Use the hashtag #NSOWeek to spread the love and raise awareness about their important role.
- Gifts and Treats: Consider organizing a small gathering or providing some treats for security officers in your community. This gesture not only shows appreciation but also fosters a sense of community spirit.
- Support Their Well-Being: In addition to their physical safety, security officers also face mental and emotional challenges. Encourage employers and institutions to provide resources and support for their mental well-being.
- Participate in Events: Many communities organize events during National Security Officer Appreciation Week. Check local listings to see if there are parades, ceremonies, or other activities you can join.
Let's make this week one to remember for all the right reasons – by showing our respect, admiration, and gratitude for the dedicated security officers who work tirelessly to make our world a safer and friendlier place.
Happy Security Officer Appreciation Week!
Learn More About Security
If our everyday heroes inspired you and are interested in starting a meaningful and rewarding career in security, check out our careers page. Unsure about how to submit a strong resume for a security position? Here is a free downloadable template to write the ideal Security Guard resume.