HDGH takes on 30-member security crew

Hotel Dieu-Grace Healthcare, November 6, 2019. (Photo by Maureen Revait)

Hotel-Dieu Grace Healthcare has strengthened its commitment to a safe place for patients, staff and volunteers.

HDGH announced Wednesday that it has stopped contracting out its security services, and welcomed 30 security guards to its payroll. The hiring was made possible by a one-time $600,000 capital investment. Operationally, $400,000 was added to the $1.8 million set for security.

The capital investment provided for a new 2,500 square foot command centre equipped with eight television monitors, 14 computers, three workstations, a training space, a meeting area and a personal alarm system.

Bill Marra, HDGH’s vice-president of external affairs, whose department oversees the security detail, said bringing the contracted security force into the fold is part of HDGH’s commitment to providing a safe, inclusive place.

“Safety is not just a word at Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare it is a culture, commitment and expectation,” said Marra. “Recruiting, training, retaining and evaluating our HDGH Security Team allows us to develop value-based security leaders and a shared sense of purpose and empowerment.”

Pat Keane, HDGH’s manager of security, said the force plays a vital role considering the services provided at the west Windsor campus.

“Our HDGH Guards see and monitor a lot on our west-end campus- individuals facing end-of-life, mental health and addictions issues, child and youth mental health, behavioural concerns and those with stressors from physical trauma,” said Keane. “We aren’t just building a team, but building a program, a culture, a new way of safety and security.”

According to a media release from HDGH, the healthcare system’s security detail is trained in control and defence tactics, non-violent crisis intervention, effective communications, Criminal Code applications, first aid and CPR, and emergency management. They are required to complete a comprehensive on-site training program that includes the hospital’s mission, vision and values as well as the organizational structure.