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10-14 February 2020
Europe/Vienna timezone

Commonization of Nuclear Security in Policing Malaysian Major Cities

Not scheduled
Poster CC: Capacity building (e.g. human resource development and sustainability, nuclear security education and job-specific performance training including for newcomer countries)


Ms Normah Ishak (Royal Malaysian Police)


Most police officers in Malaysia will frown upon mentioning of nuclear security in normal policing. This is because the phrase is not common to their police lingo even though it is attached to the word security. Some will say nuclear security is something related to what scientist do in lab, some will relate it to nuclear bomb, others will say this is an academic issue, some go to the extent that nuclear security is not related to Malaysia because we do not own nuclear bomb, some will even ask back what constitute nuclear security and some will shrug off the issue. These examples are not to undermine or underrate the Malaysian police. The police top brass is capable of understanding the issue of nuclear security, but they do not patrol the street on a daily basis. The one who is manning the streets, meeting the community, performing crime watch, and other crime prevention initiatives is the one who should be familiarized and empowered with the phrase of nuclear security and what does it means in a bigger threat context. These field officers including those routinely patrolling the city limits must be sensitized on the inclusion of nuclear security function in their daily tasking. Middle level managers and supervisors are the essential disseminator or propagator of nuclear security. In meeting room, during daily briefing or shift briefing, apart from normal crime prevention issues, suffice that managers and supervisors include nuclear security reminder as 5% of the briefing contents. Over time, nuclear security will slowly but surely be embedded in their hearts and minds. It takes simple mindful approach to propagate nuclear security. It must be structured and strategized to reach the targeted group. Before embarking into this program, of course, it is essential to get the buy in from top leadership of the police force. Without genuine leadership’s will, any good program will not survive the test of time. Sustainability is the key factor to a successful integration of nuclear security into day-to-day policing. To start with, forget about any instrumentation. Nuclear security should be introduced in simple plain language to commonize it among targeted officers. First group of targeted officers are those from the middle management and supervisors. Once they understand the subject matter, some forms of reading materials are given to them for self-reading to invoke questions they may have later on. For this purpose, a dedicated officer from the regulator will be introduced to them as resource person. No pressure, just a genuine leisure reading in their spare times. While the middle managers and supervisors absorbed new material in their daily job, the second targeted group will have some fun learning and understanding nuclear security program in an interactive classroom setting. It should be a half-day informative event with creative contents just to connect them with nuclear security. Instrumentation is only mention in passing so they can follow through later when detection equipment made available to them. For ready state deployment, focus is given to this existing work force but parallel to this a different classroom contents can be designed for new intake. Apart from standard police trainee modules, the new intake class will have a special 6-hour module including practical time to play around with the various detection instruments in various scenario settings. This will prepare them the basic understanding of nuclear security once they are deployed to various police formation throughout the country. It will work even without the instrument because awareness is more important than having an instrument but did nothing when it raise the alarm. To further commonize nuclear security, we must virtually detach it from any special force or special unit like CBRNE team so normal policeman will also feel responsible when confronted with nuclear security situation and will take immediate action while waiting for a backup team of specialist to arrive. Let nuclear security be a common thing among the police personnel starting from day one at the training centre with only a fraction of the training time. Approach to training is important because with limited instruments, we are banking on high level of awareness. If the trainee can retain information about nuclear security after graduating from training centre, it is a good sign he will remember it throughout his career as a policeman or officer. Make nuclear security something light and easy, use a lot of visualization and association in teaching technique. For example, inviting iconic figure or personality to perform demo or do role play for the demo. The trainees will remember the iconic figure as mental image and relate it to nuclear security or to whatever contents that have been discussed. With this effort, in the long run, nuclear security can be part and parcel of daily policing.

State Malaysia
Gender Female

Primary author

Ms Normah Ishak (Royal Malaysian Police)

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