Safety and security at football events across the world has always been the highest priority for FIFA. To ensure this, the FIFA Security Division is providing support and expert advice in security-related matters to host countries, local security agencies, Local Organising Committees and FIFA’s Member Associations.
During FIFA World Cup™ qualifying matches or final competitions, the assistance and support provided by the Security Division can range from reviewing national security concepts or operational security plans to conducting inspection visits and, based on risk/threat assessments and operational needs, appointing FIFA security officers in the venues where matches or tournaments are taking place. These assignments may consist of a four-day mission when appointed for qualifying matches or up to one month for one of FIFA's competitions.
After the new FIFA Stadium Safety and Security Regulations went into effect on 1 January 2013, FIFA started to hold regional seminars across all FIFA Member Associations in mid-2014 in order to train national security officers on the new regulations. So far these seminars have been held in CONCACAF, CONMEBOL, AFC and CAF regions (link to news on FIFA.com).
To continuously improve the level of service that can be offered to Member Associations and Local Organising Committees, FIFA's Security Division is currently looking to enlarge and enhance its pool of trained FIFA security officers by identifying, recruiting and deploying female security officers. By searching for officers who have a background and strong experience in the security field that are nominated and endorsed by their respective Member Association, FIFA is looking to develop a broader base of security officers to serve domestically and abroad. As the selected female security officers will be assigned to FIFA's competitions, they will then in return be in able to further officiate within their Member Association and even conduct security trainings back home, which offers a win-win situation for everyone involved.
When the FIFA Security Division started the regional seminars in 2014, all of the candidates that were identified to meet the requirements were male. It has always been the goal, however, to also include female security officers. This is why FIFA has now developed a dedicated identification process through which all Member Associations have been asked to put forward applications of female candidates.
“We are striving to constantly improve the quality of our services and to maintain a very high level of security, together with our Member Associations and with the hosts and organisers of all the FIFA tournaments,” Ralf Mutschke, FIFA Director Security, said. “In order to keep our pool of security experts who can officiate during FIFA events as FIFA security officers, the identification of new security officers, both female and male, is amongst our top priorities.
"As we are currently lacking particularly female FIFA security officers we launched the initiative, involving all our member associations.”
Likewise for their male colleagues, all female FIFA security officers will be available for both men’s and women’s competitions.