Paris 2024 Olympic Games: MEPs warn of "a worrying capacity deficit" in terms of private security

"Worrying Deficit"

Paris 2024 Olympic Games: MEPs warn of "a worrying capacity deficit" in terms of private security

"Worrying Deficit". "Measures too late"... While it has already been several months that the ability of the organizers of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (JOP) of 2024 - and the public authorities - to mobilize enough private security agents for the sites of the future competitions, MEPs are once again sounding the alarm.

"Eighteen months from the Games, the private security sector is facing a worrying capacity deficit", insists the Committee on Cultural Affairs and Education in its report for opinion on the bill "relating to the Games Olympic and Paralympic Games and various other provisions”, published Friday, March 17.

The Paris Olympic Games Organizing Committee (Cojop) has "secured only 4,500 [agents] to date according to Etienne Thobois", its director general, notes the commission for cultural affairs and education in its opinion. , while recalling that "the Cojop would need 22,000 to 33,000 private security agents according to the Court of Auditors". Mr. Thobois was heard by the deputies when the results of a call for tenders for private security companies were not yet fully known.

The government, which estimates that it will be necessary to mobilize some 22,000 agents every day for the duration of the event, has nevertheless been operating various levers for several months now to reach this figure. But, for the deputies of the Committee on Cultural Affairs and Education, the "measures aimed at increasing the attractiveness of the profession have proved to be too late for one to hope that the sector will be able to provide the personnel necessary during the Games". Under pressure from the government, security companies notably increased remuneration on January 1 by 7.5%, after 3.5% in 2022.

"All scenarios are on the table"

During her hearing with the deputies on March 1, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, the Minister of Sports and the Olympic Games, had detailed the various actions taken to boost or support the necessary recruitments: call for people with the title to exercise this profession, but who no longer practice it; implementation of a simplified event security title aimed at job seekers and students, with training reduced to 106 hours instead of the usual 175 hours.

Asked during the past week, the management of the Cojop did not wish to speak on the subject, referring to a communication in the coming days. A few weeks ago, she promised "maximum visibility by the first semester".

The organizers, however, did not hide that "all scenarios are on the table". Translation: If private security cannot provide enough manpower, the military may have to be called in.

"If at the end of the ends of the ends of the ends, a certain number of people are missing, we will see what we can do", was satisfied to answer, on January 24, Gérald Darmanin, the Minister of the Interior, to centrist Senator Laurent Lafon, who asked him "when the scenario of the use of the army will be [it] officially announced" to compensate for a lack of private security agents.