National

Security guards dumped from Vic quarantine

By AAP Newswire

Security guards believed responsible for Victoria's bungled hotel quarantine regime are no longer a part of the program.

The Victorian government hired private security firms, which in turn subcontracted guards, to watch international travellers quarantined at hotels in Melbourne.

But numerous protocol breaches, which are now subject to a judicial inquiry to be completed in September, led to coronavirus outbreaks.

Premier Daniel Andrews said on Wednesday "all of those who it seems likely" were responsible for the outbreaks "are no longer playing a part in our hotel quarantine arrangements".

Management of the hotel quarantine program is now being done by Corrections Victoria, which also manages the state's prisons.

Victoria has put a hold on international travellers coming in to the state until the situation is under control and Mr Andrews has written to Prime Minister Scott Morrison about extending the original two-week pause.

While some have been stood down over the quarantine debacle, security guards remain a part of Victoria's coronavirus response.

The Australian Security Industry Association says it is important to not make sweeping judgements of the entire industry, pointing to 750 private guards being used in the NSW program without any breaches.

But the organisation has long raised the issues of sham contracting, "zombie" enterprise agreements and the use and abuse of ABN holders.

"Addressing these issues will be one of the priority areas in ASIAL's submission to the current review," chief executive Bryan de Caires said.

Mr de Caires said security officers are required to do competency-based training in order to obtain a security licence and from this month, those requirements will be more onerous.

When problems arise though, it's not just on the individual guards to be held responsible, he said.

"Such an operation is all about control and command. Although not knowing the specifics of the terms of engagement, failures are a shared responsibility," Mr de Caires said.