In Nova Scotia, a licensed Security Guard is called a Private Guard. Becoming a Security Guard/ Private Guard in NS is similar to a lot of other provinces: you need to meet basic requirements such as age, language proficiency, and other usual licensing requirements of this nature. Furthermore, to get a Security Guard license in Nova Scotia with specialized services, you need to take government approved NS Security Guard licensing courses. In Nova Scotia, the government body that controls a Nova Scotia Security Guard's license is The Department of Justice, Security Programs governed under the NS Private Investigators and Private Guards Act. So, it is the Security Programs office that will have a list of approved NS Security Guard licensing courses. On top of this, you will need to be sponsored by a Nova Scotia security company (your employer). Once you submit the proof of your ability to meet the requirements to the Security Programs office, you will get your Nova Scotia Security Guard license.
Nova Scotia Security Guard License Requirements
Age: You must be 18yo or older.
Criminal Record: You cannot have a criminal record of any kind or be under investigation for a crime. However, NS might still grant you a Security Guard license depending on the details of the record.
Canadian Citizen: You need to be a Canadian citizen or be legally allowed to work in Nova Scotia. You will have to submit a copy of government ID to the Security Programs office.
English: You must be able to speak and write in English.
Nova Scotia Government Approved Security License Course: Your Security Guard license can include special services, such as armed security. You will need to complete a security license course approved by the Security Programs office and submit proof of completion to get these special services on your license. Contact the Security Programs office for a list of approved courses.
Sponsor: You will need a security company to sponsor you.
Passport Photo: You will have to provide the NS Security Programs office with a certified passport photo. Most passport photo services can often certify a passport photo.
Fee: You will have to pay a small licensing fee, around $30CAD.
Submitting: The documents you submit can be sent to the NS Security Programs office via mail or online uploading.
Security Programs Office
1681 Granville Street
P.O. Box 7
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Phone: (902) 424-2905
Fax: (902) 424-0700
Toll Free: 1-888-760-5577
What Does a Nova Scotia Security Guard Do?
Nova Scotia Security Guards Patrol Vacant Locations
Nova Scotia Security Guards will do foot patrols of locations for a set number of times per shift.
A common task for a Nova Scotia Security Guard will be checking mechanical rooms for any unusual signs or potential health and safety issues.
Nova Scotia Security Guards watch for hazards and fill out hazard reports (Nova Scotia Guards write a lot of reports).
Guards in Nova Scotia document and report maintenance issues to supervisors.
Many Nova Scotia security sites require Guards to monitor fire extinguishers to ensure that they are not overdue for inspection (official reviews are done by maintenance personnel).
Nova Scotia Security Guards write a lot, including filling in logs as their shifts progresses with what activities are being done at what times. Nova Scotia Guards will have their own security notebooks and will constantly note all unusual sightings, occurrences, and incidents.
Nova Scotia Security Guards will respond to alarms and act accordingly as per the Emergency Response plan set in place by supervisors. This may include,
Evacuation of the security site.
Checking alarm system on the way out for information about where the problem is occurring.
Responding to incidents and completing all reports as necessary.
Nova Scotia Security Guards Protect Sites with Customers
If a Nova Scotia Security Guard is working in a team environment, they will usually meet for a pre-shift briefing at a set location. Once the meeting has been completed the Nova Scotia Security Guards will go directly to their designated sites.
In Nova Scotia security site locations with customers, Guards will do a lot of patrolling. This can be in a building or outside in places such as parking lots.
Nova Scotia Security Guards are usually responsible for site cleanliness when there are no designated cleaning staff. This means as a Nova Scotia Security Guard, expect to be cleaning a lot of trash.
Monitoring CCTV cameras will be a big part of a Nova Scotia Security Guard’s job. This will be on a continuous basis with follow ups on issues seen.
When it comes to security sites in the service industry, Nova Scotia Security Guards will have to assist customers in various non-security ways. This can be giving them directions or carrying items for them. Furthermore, Nova Scotia Security Guards will often be expected to be friendly, outgoing, and talkative with customers in their security sites.
A constant security issue for Nova Scotia security sites with customers will be smoking, alcohol consumption, and narcotics. Nova Scotia Security Guards will often be making sure people aren’t smoking in non-smoking areas, consuming alcohol, or narcotics. For the latter, a Nova Scotia Security Guard will usually report the issue to local police.
If the Nova Scotia security site is a residence, responding to noise complaints will be a big part of the job.
Of course, catching shoplifters will be a constant for a Nova Scotia Security Guard in a site with customers.
Nova Scotia Security Guards Work at Security Gates
Nova Scotia Security Guards will patrol parking areas to make sure vehicles are registered at that security site.
Every person entering through the security gate will produce valid photo ID to the Nova Scotia Security Guard. The Guard will determine if the individual may pass.
During medical emergencies, the Nova Scotia Security Guard will direct traffic to allow easy access for Nova Scotia EMS vehicles.
Nova Scotia Security Guards Deal with Medical Issues
Emergencies at a Nova Scotia security site can happen at any time, day or night. On going communication will be key for all Nova Scotia Security Guards involved to get through the emergency with the best possible outcome.
Nova Scotia EMS/ ambulances will often be called by Nova Scotia Security Guards.
The Nova Scotia Security Guard that places the 911 call will relay info regarding who, what, where, why, and when.
Nova Scotia Security Supervisors will usually take lead on these incidents and direct other Nova Scotia Guards to specific tasks to perform during the emergency.
Nova Scotia Security Guards will always remain calm and professional. Furthermore, they will assist however they can.
About the Author
Peter Sandru is an Instructor & Co-Founder of NDIL with over 15 years working in Canadian security. Peter has spent more than a decade conducting security operations throughout the world, primarily for corporations, law firms, and government agencies. Peter has assisted in the creation of numerous security training programs in various capacities. Peter has personally trained many Canadian Security Guards.