BUSINESSES have a duty of care for employees working abroad and in hostile environments, warns a new security training provider.

Bespoke Training Services, based in Old Town, has recruited Pete Wheeler, who served as a police officer for 30 years before he went on to become a security consultant for clients all over the world.

He gives civil servants, often working in hostile countries, security training, as well as those working abroad.

Increasingly this can mean the solitary graphic designer working on a international project or business traveller going to their room at the end of a quiet hotel corridor.

For these workers businesses need to recognise the extra risks involved, and take steps to avoid falling foul of the law, he argues.

“In cases where incidents have occurred, we are increasingly seeing requests for evidence of the due diligence processes that were undertaken," he said.

“Proof if you like that the employer did indeed take reasonable steps to identify, prepare for, mitigate and manage potential risks to the employee.

“Likewise, there is also a basic legal requirement on the employee to have asked questions, raised any concerns or risks, requested support or training.

“This is a real shift in culture – where the responsibility for personal safety at work is now very much a joint one between employer and employee.

“Organisations employing staff who travel for work or who work away from their home base, must be mindful of their safeguarding responsibilities.”

Anne Messer, director of Bespoke Training Services said: “Pete is already a hugely valuable asset to the Bespoke team.

“His experience spans not only his professional background with the police force, along with his work with UK and internationally based commercial organisations to actively identify, avoid and manage travel and work risks, but also his work with Her Majesty’s Government and other high profile organisations employing staff who travel or are based remotely.”

Bespoke, on Newport Street, offers the full range of training and management programmes, executive coaching, and business skills training.