NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly Attends 9/11 Commemoration Honoring Bravery and Leadership of SEIU Security Officers
On Saturday, security officers who protect New York City were honored at a Security Recognition Ceremony hosted by SEIU Local 32BJ with NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly. The ceremony served to honor the men and women who lost their lives on September 11th, and to award recognition to private security officers who have excelled in the line of duty.
Ten years ago, 10 SEIU security officers lost their lives while on duty at the World Trade Center towers. As security officers do every day, they served as first responders to a serious emergency, aiding cops, firefighters and rescue crews who came to the scene.
"Because of the nature of your work, you are in a better position than most to spot the indicators of terrorism," New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly told security officers present at the ceremony. "We depend on you. We depend on you to stay engaged, to act as our eyes and ears."
Since then, 32BJ has partnered with local businesses and city agencies through the Thomas Shortman Training Fund, which provides education and training to 32BJ members, including security officers. 32BJ has led the fight for stronger security standards among private security companies in New York, such as creating a comprehensive labor-management training program led by a veteran NYPD sergeant that prepares officers to meet today's security challenges. The union has also won higher pay, affordable health care access, and other necessary benefits for thousands of security officers and their families. During Saturday's ceremony, the Thomas Shortman Training fund received an Industry Leadership Award.
"We have made great improvements in the private security industry and we're not done yet," said Wallace Jones, a security officer at Rockefeller center, and a member of the 32BJ executive board.
Also recognized was the new National September 11 Memorial and Museum, for its commitment to providing the highest training, wage and benefits standards to its employees, allowing it to build a highly skilled and professional security team.
Several individual security officers received awards, including the September 11th Remembrance Award, Security Officer Bravery and Valor Award, Security Officer Advancement Award, and the Security Officer Leadership Award.
SEIU Local 32BJ works alongside the Stand For Security campaign to continue raising standards for security officers, fighting for better jobs and training that will in turn create a more professional industry and safer communities.
Watch several interviews from the Security Recognition Ceremony in the video below: