Code of Conduct

VSOS is pleased to announce our status as a full signatory to the International Code of Conduct for Private Security Service Providers (ICoC PSSP)

The ICoC is a set of principles for private security providers, created through a multi-stakeholder initiative convened by the Swiss government.

As a signatory to the ICoC, VSOS is committed to ensuring operational and ethical standards. We pride ourselves with a strict professionalism in regards to the ICoC. While the code is relatively new, the principles and standards demanded have always been an integral part of VSOS operations.

 

Relevant excerpts from the ICoC:

USE OF FORCE

Signatory Companies will require their Personnel to take all reasonable steps to avoid the use of force. If force is used, it shall be in a manner consistent with applicable law. In no case shall the use of force exceed what is strictly necessary, and should be proportionate to the threat and appropriate to the situation.
Signatory Companies will require that their Personnel not use firearms against persons except in self-defence or defence of others against the imminent threat of death or serious injury, or to prevent the perpetration of a particularly serious crime involving grave threat to life.
To the extent that Personnel are formally authorized to assist in the exercise of a state’s law enforcement authority, Signatory Companies will require that their use of force or weapons will comply with all national and international obligations applicable to regular law enforcement officials of that state and, as a minimum, with the standards expressed in the United Nations Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials (1990)

SELECTION AND VETTING OF PERSONNEL

Signatory Companies will exercise due diligence in the selection of Personnel, including verifiable vetting and ongoing performance review of their Personnel. Signatory Companies will only hire individuals with the requisite qualifications as defined by the applicable contract, applicable national law and industry standards, and the principles contained in this Code. 

Signatory Companies will assess and ensure the continued ability of Personnel to perform their duties in accordance with the principles of this Code and will regularly evaluate Personnel to ensure that they meet appropriate physical and mental fitness standards to perform their contracted duties.

TRAINING OF PERSONNEL

Signatory companies will ensure tat all Personnel performing Security Services receive initial and recurrent professional training and are also fully aware of this Code and all applicable international and relevant national laws, including those pertaining to international human rights, international humanitarian law, international criminal law and other relevant criminal law. Signatory Companies will maintain records adequate to demonstrate attendance and results from all professional training sessions, including from practical exercises.

MANAGEMENT OF WEAPONS

Signatory Companies will acquire and maintain authorizations for the possession and use of any weapons and ammunition required by applicable law.

Signatory Companies will neither, and will require that their Personnel do not, possess nor use weapons or ammunition which are illegal under any applicable law. Signatory Companies will not, and will require that their Personnel not, engage in any illegal weapons transfers and will conduct any weapons transactions in accordance with applicable laws and UN Security Council requirements, including sanctions. Weapons and ammunition will not be altered in any way that contravenes applicable national or international law.

Signatory Companies policies or procedures for management of weapons and ammunitions should include:
a) secure storage;
b) controls over their issue;
c) records regarding to whom and when weapons are issued;
d) identification and accounting of all ammunition; and
e) verifiable and proper disposal.

WEAPONS TRAINING

Signatory Companies will require that:

a) Personnel who are to carry weapons will be granted authorization to do so only on completion of verification of appropriate training with regard to the type and model of weapon they will carry. Personnel will not operate with a weapon until they have successfully completed weapon-specific training.

b) Personnel carrying weapons must receive regular, verifiable and recurrent training specific to the weapons they carry and rules for the use of force.

c) Personnel carrying weapons must receive appropriate training in regard to rules on the use of force. This training may be based on a variety of relevant standards, but should be based at a minimum on the principles contained in this Code and the UN Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials (1990), and national laws or regulations in effect in the area duties will be performed.