2021: The ICAO Year of Security Culture

By Debbie Ciccotelli, Vice President, Strategic Initiatives

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has designated 2021 as the “Year of Security Culture”.

Additionally, 2021 commemorates the 20th Anniversary of 9/11, the worst acts of unlawful interference in the history of Aviation.

As we begin 2021, it is equally important to acknowledge the challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the aviation industry. The true extent of the economic damage sustained by the wider aviation industry still remains largely unknown, yet in spite of this, the focus of the aviation industry is now on how to restart amidst the COVID-19 pandemic in a safe and healthy manner.

As we begin the road to recovery a renewed focus on security is important. Threats against civil aviation continue to evolve and COVID-19 has not reduced the attractiveness of aviation as a terrorist target. I want to take this opportunity to emphasize the importance of continuing to cultivate a high level of security awareness at all levels within our aviation teams and to reinforce the need to proactively, think and consistently act in a security-conscious manner. By ensuring we have a robust and positive security culture, we can support our clients in increasing airport security compliance and vigilance which will in turn will contribute to increasing public confidence in the air transportation system.

What is Security Culture?

ICAO has defined security culture as a set of norms, beliefs, values, attitudes, and assumptions that are inherent in the daily operation of an organization and are reflected by the actions and behaviours of all entities and personnel within the organization. Security should be everyone’s responsibility – from the ground up.

Effective security culture is about:

  • Recognizing that effective security is critical to business success
  • Establishing an appreciation of positive security practices among employees
  • Aligning security to core business goals
  • Articulating security as a core value rather than as an obligation or a burdensome

Embracing the Year of Security Culture is a “call to action” and as security is part of the DNA of ASP, we have an obligation as both a company and as individuals to actively build on our strengths as we adapt to the new normal. Each one of us needs to believe that we can make a difference and to capitalize on the opportunity to demonstrate the strong security culture and mindset every member of our aviation team brings to the airport communities which we serve. Our security culture must be mirrored in our actions and behaviours and your personal commitment is the foundation of our efforts.

With this in mind, let’s work in partnership with our aviation clients to ensure the success of the Year of Security Culture 2021.

  • Category: Executive/HQ/ICTS News