Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Port Security: Reporting to Corporate

Dubai Ports World is buying London-based Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co. and will now run commercial operations at shipping terminals in New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia. Dubai Ports World is a holding company, a corporation that owns enough voting stock in another firm to control management and operations by influencing or electing its board of directors. P&O officials have said they expect the company to be run out of London and do not expect changes in U.S. operations. Emphasis mine.

I work in a small privately run prison owned by a large international company that owns and manages prison facilities all over the world. We hire our own employees and the management, security, and day to day operations are dictated to us by our client, the New Mexico Corrections Department, NMCD. We are also accredited by the American Correctional Association, ACA, and must follow their guidelines on how we run our facility. So when I hear that our ports will still be run by unionized Americans and that security will be handled by the Coast Guard and Homeland Security, I am somewhat reassured that foreign ownership by Dubai will not significantly alter the current status quo. However what still concerns me is that the operational knowledge on how those ports are managed might fall into unfriendly hands.

Our facility is governed by policy and procedure. We have policies and procedures that cover every aspect of how we operate. Policies and procedures for payroll, staffing, security, maintenance, medical, warehouse, food service, fire and safety, education, and even our emergency plans. Policies and procedures set by NMCD, ACA, and corporate. There is literally nothing we do that is not covered by some policy and procedure. And all of those policies and procedures are sitting in corporate headquarters. Any changes go to corporate for approval and all of our many audits go to corporate. If our company was bought out by someone with ties to one of our major prison gangs, the Syndicato Nuevo Mexico or Los Carnales, I would be scared to death because of the possibility that all that intelligence could fall into the hands of someone who would use it against us. That is why I am concerned that Dubai Ports World, owned by the United Arab Emirates, will be managing our ports.


Harry said...

Aah, nothin' to worry about. All the rules and regulations will just be written in Arabic now. But the longshoremen will have to be careful around the containers marked: For Martyrdom Operations Only.

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