Before You Apply – Requirements for a Security Worker Licence
Proving Your Identity and Citizenship
To hold a security worker licence, you must be ‘ordinarily resident’ in Canada — that means the regular, normal routine part of your life takes place in Canada, but you do not need to be permanently settled in Canada. You just have to be settled here for the time being. The idea is to promote employment opportunities in the security industry field not only for Canadian citizens but for others who are here temporarily on study or work permits (visas).
If you were born in Canada and are ‘ordinarily resident’ you have to provide the Registrar with your:
- residential address in Canada, plus
- a clear copy of your birth certificate, or
- Canadian Passport
If you were not born in Canada, but are 'ordinarily resident' you have to provide the Registrar clear copies (front and back) of one of the following:
- Record of Landing Document (IMM1000)
- Confirmation of Permanent Residence Document (IMM5292)
- Permanent Residence Card
- Citizenship Certificate Card
- Study Permit or Work Permit – Note: depending on the type of work allowed under the permit, the Registrar may place a condition on the licence that restricts the type of security work the person may perform. Important: please be aware of the expiry date of your study or work permit as your Security Worker licence is only valid for the term of your study or work permit, regardless of whether you applied for a longer term of security worker licence.
The Registrar also needs proof of your identity – you prove this by providing a clear copy of one of the following pieces of photo ID:
- Drivers Licence
- BCID – you may apply for a BCID card at any driver licensing office. Note, if you are applying for a BCID, it may take 4 to 6 weeks to process and mail to you. For more information on BCID and how to apply, visit the ICBC website
- Canadian Permanent Resident Card
- Canadian Native Status Card (if issued with a photo)
- Canadian Firearms Licence
- BC Services Card (with photo)
When you apply for a licence, you must submit a passport-quality photograph of yourself that has been taken within the last 12 months. Passport-quality means it must clearly show the front view of your face, no sunglasses.
Only original 'printed' photographs are accepted. The photograph should be 2 inches by 2 inches. We can accept digital photos in JPEG, BITMAP or PDF format only.
Once you have your licence, you may update your photo at anytime (i.e., during a licence renewal or using the 'Update' form). It is mandatory that your photograph be updated every five years while holding a licence.
The Registrar must have a copy of all security worker licensees’ fingerprints on file. You, the applicant, must make your own arrangements to have your fingerprints taken using the form Request for Fingerprinting (SPD0507). The form is two pages long. The first page you complete, and the second is for the fingerprinting agency to complete.
An approved fingerprinting agency has been approved by the R.C.M.P. and assigned an ORI number allowing the agency to take fingerprints. However, there are two types of fingerprinting agencies:
Ink & Roll Agencies: are required to take fingerprints and send the fingerprints directly to the Registrar, Security Programs Division. The Agency will return the confirmation of fingerprints portion of the fingerprint form (SPD0507) to the applicant to submit with the application for a security worker licence.
Digital Agencies: are required to take fingerprints digitally but have the option to send fingerprints, directly to the RCMP in Ottawa, but the fingerprint form must indicate that the results must be returned directly to the Registrar, Security Programs Division. The confirmation portion of the fingerprint form (SPD0507) will be returned to applicant to submit with the application for a security worker licence.
When you give the two-page fingerprint form to the fingerprinting agency, you will receive back the completed bottom slip of page two, which you attach to your application for a licence.
Fingerprints are only required for the first application for a security worker licence. Once the Registrar has your fingerprints on file, you are not required to repeat the process.
Criminal, Police and Correctional Record Checks
When you sign your application form, whether for a new licence or renewal, you are giving your consent to the Registrar to run a criminal record check, police information and correctional service record check on you. The results of the search will help the Registrar determine your suitability for holding a security worker licence — i.e., whether you present a risk to the public.
Your consent to this check is for the duration of the term you hold your licence, and upon any renewal of term. The checks may reveal pending charges, convictions, peace bonds, recognizance orders, stay of proceedings, conditional and absolute discharges of any offence under the Criminal Code of Canada, Youth Criminal Justice Act or Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (Canada).
Be advised that it is your responsibility under the Security Services Act to notify the Registrar, within 14 days of the occurrence, of any new charges and /or convictions filed against you.
Mental Health Condition Report
You must provide the Registrar with particulars of any mental health condition for which you are receiving treatment. The information will help the Registrar determine whether you present a risk to the public if licensed as a security worker. Download the Mental Health Condition Form (SPD0511) and provide it to your doctor to complete.
You may not be under the care of a doctor for a mental health condition when you first apply for your licence, but if at any time while you hold your security worker licence this changes, you must advise the Registrar using the form Reporting an UPDATE to Current Security Worker Licence (SPD0517) and providing the Mental Health Condition form completed by your doctor.
Police and Peace Officer Status
You may not hold a security worker licence in B.C. if you are a member of a police force as defined in the B.C. Police Act.
You may be considered for a security worker licence if you are:
- a volunteer auxiliary or reserve constable
- a sheriff
- a corrections officer
- a court-appointed bailiff
- a special provincial constable or special municipal constable (as defined in the B.C. Police Act)
If you are in one of the above categories, you must provide with your application a letter from your superior confirming what access you have to any justice, court or police information systems (PRIME, PIRS, PROS, CPIC) and that you know and understand that you may not utilize information from these systems while acting in the capacity of a security worker.
As some security workers communicate directly with the general public or emergency services personnel it is important, in the interest of public safety, that security workers have a sufficient level of English fluency. The Registrar uses the Canadian Language Benchmarks as the standard mark. The Benchmarks are the national standard used in Canada, when determining an adult immigrant’s language proficiency — that is the ability to speak or perform in an acquired language.
The security licence types that have a condition of English fluency are armoured car guard, private investigator, security alarm monitor and response, security guard and security guard under supervision.
If the Registrar’s staff or other sources provide information to the Registrar regarding your speaking and listening ability, the Registrar will require you to have an assessment done. The results of the assessment must meet, at a minimum, the standards for listening and speaking English established by Stage 2, Benchmark 5 of the Canadian Language Benchmarks 2000. The English language proficiency assessment must be conducted by a certified Canadian Language Benchmark assessor. It will be up to you to make arrangements for the testing and paying any costs.
The complete text of the standards can be found on the Centre for Canadian Language Benchmarks website.
To hold a Security Worker Licence you must be at least 19 years of age.
The only exception is for licence types: Locksmith under supervision, security alarm installer under supervision or security alarm monitor. For these three licence types you may be 16 years of age or older.
Training and Qualifications
Each licence type has specific training requirements or qualifications an individual must attain before applying for a Security Worker licence. The next section of this site, Specific Requirements and Training by Licence Type provides a description of the work that is done by each licence type and lists the specific training and/or experience you must have to be licensed for that type of work.
>>Next: Specific Requirements and Training by Licence Type