The GMB Trade Union representing workers in the security sector has signed an agreement with leading solutions provider G4S Security Services (UK) which recognises the GMB as "an appropriate union" to represent the interests of G4S's 15,500 UK-based security officers.

The agreement was signed in the House of Commons by Allan Black - the GMB's national officer - and David Beaton, regional president for the UK and Ireland at G4S.

"This agreement is a landmark for the industry," commented Black. "We are currently in the midst of huge change with the impact of statutory licensing and the Working Time Regulations. This agreement will enable us to play a full part with the company in managing that change."

Black expects other service providers in the industry to "take the same mature view" as G4S Security Services (UK).

For his part, David Beaton is said to be "delighted" to have the GMB working alongside his company to represent the interests of all employees.

In relation to licensing, Gary Smith - the GMB's national organiser - told SMT: "Any individual working in the industry who meets the criminality criteria, has passed the training qualification and has an application in the SIA system as of 20 March ought not to suffer any legal sanction."