New Jersey Lawmaker Questions Armed Security Hiring
The lawmaker asks why the state spent $2M on armed security instead of using police
- By Matt Holden
- Apr 23, 2015
Members of the New Jersey Assembly Budget Committee questioned why the Department of Children and Families chose to spend $2 million on a private security contract when it could have tapped the Human Services Police Department.
The hiring came after a child welfare caseworker was attached by a knife-wielding client at her office in Camden, New Jersey. Administration hired armed security guards and assigned them to each of the 46 offices scattered around the state to help calm workers’ fears about their safety.
"The financial implications are clear. We are now paying more to have private security than we were paying in overtime costs to have the Human Services Police, who were always in the building," Assemblyman Troy Singleton said after the hearing in Trenton. "From a fiscal standpoint, that left me scratching my head."
"While I can appreciate the enhanced security measures taken since the incident, I don't understand the decision that led to the security lapse or why we chose to privatize our security needs, instead of utilizing the human services police we had," he said.
Matt Holden is an Associate Content Editor for 1105 Media, Inc. He received his MFA and BA in journalism from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. He currently writes and edits for Occupational Health & Safety magazine, and Security Today.