As with any active organisation, it is anticipated that the activities of the User Group will develop and change with time and thus the items highlighted below will be subject to change. However the core activities must always firmly remain centred upon the needs of the Users of CCTV systems and improving the User Group’s service to them.
The Standards Committee is the ‘workhorse ‘ of the CCTV User Group formed in April 1997. Comprising 18 members, with 12 representing the Police, Local Authority and Commercial users of CCTV systems and 6 from the companies providing specialist services to the users, it meets quarterly to develop and formulate standards, and identify ‘Best Value’ in the management and operation of CCTV.
Telephone / E-mail Members Help Line
The Director provides a ‘Help Line’ service to members of the User Group on any topic relating to CCTV, relying largely upon the work of the standards committee and the expertise and experience of all the other members, both users and service suppliers. Whilst any telephone request will be dealt with as expeditiously as possible it should be noted the Directors duties take him away from the office, sometimes for several days at a time and members with access may find it easier to use the email service. Email enables questions or problems raised, to be exposed to a wider group of members in the shortest amount of time.
E-Groups Internet Discussion Forum
This new service enables any member who has any problem related to CCTV to immediately ask all other members whether they have come across it, how they approached it or whether indeed it is a major issue to be concerned about. Using this medium they can also share their experiences with other members or inform them of any new or innovative development in the CCTV Industry. Typical discussions have been about getting the best value in Tape Purchase, maintenance contracts, the number of cameras an operator can monitor, and what to do at the end of lease or hire periods.
The User Group provides members with regular newsletters informing them of items of interest, the activities of the standards committee and forthcoming events. However items of urgency or those which entail copious quantities of paper will be dealt with via e-mail, both for speed and to minimise the running costs .
CCTV Image is the only official magazine of the CCTV User Group, written for and on behalf of its members, published up to 6 times per year and is the primary means of maintaining member’s awareness of developments in the CCTV market and in technology and best practice. This is the Members publication and Members are strongly encouraged to submit their own articles on any new initiative or new way or working or development of their systems.This is unfortunatly available due to publishers loss of advertisement.
Conferences Seminars and Exhibitions
The Conferences really have proved their merit in a variety of ways, and attending the conferences is highly recommended to members both new and ‘old’ alike. There is nothing to match the value of actually meeting and interacting with people who have a mutual desire to gain knowledge of CCTV. The levels of knowledge are as diverse as the components of successful systems. Some people have been involved since the very first moment, whilst others have only recently become drawn in. By holding a conference two times a year, it is possible to bring this wealth of experience together and maintain a fresh approach to the latest issues of interest to all of the members.
The delegates each has their own contributions to make based on their exclusive experiences and circumstances because no two CCTV systems are set up in an identical manner. These people have a huge range of technical, management, administrative, personnel and training experiences that has in the past, benefited delegates who attend the conferences and interrelate with each other during the course of the event. There are also workshops and speakers specifically intended to address the latest ‘hot topic’ or the old tried and true methods of practice.
The speakers are a high-calibre assortment of representatives from the Government, the House of Commons, the Legal Community, and of those groups who generate so much interest in anything and everything to do with CCTV. Although the material covered is not always perceived as a stimulating subject, the speakers have always managed to breathe life into their presentations, making the latest ‘bumf’ easy to understand and digest.
The venues are located throughout the country, with excellent facilities and accommodation available for the duration of the conference. We are fortunate to secure a discount from the providers that we in turn, can pass along to the members. The hotels usually have a four-star rating and are booked at a very competitive rate so it makes sense to use these surroundings for the delegates.
The encounter is not to be missed, but if someone is unfortunate enough to miss the actual event, there is a brief newsletter that covers the conference, albeit diluted from the original, it will contain the most relevant information and will be accompanied by any handouts from the conference itself.
Best Practice Papers
From time to time the Standards Committee, or individual members will provide papers indicating ‘Best Practice’, or model documents as developed and used by them in respect of specific CCTV topics and these will be available to members either without charge or at a nominal charge to cover administration costs.
The User Group is developing a ‘library’ of ‘model documents’ eg.
Protocol between Police Forces and Local Authorities for the use of Police Radios in Control Rooms
Service Level Agreements for the monitoring of another organisations cameras
Model Subject Access request forms for Data Protection.
A simple introduction to the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act in so far as it affects CCTV systems
Job Descriptions (Operator and Manager), Recruitment selection pro-forma and training records which are all directly available from the Members section of this website.
Service Providers Database
The User Group maintains a database of those of its Corporate Members who provide services to the Users of CCTV equipment. The database is again available to all Members from this website . We stress this is not an approved or recommended list and users must always satisfy themselves that the company is appropriate for the task in question.
Advice and Assistance to Member Organisations
The CCTV User Group will provide advice to any of its members on topics related to the operation and management of CCTV Systems. Subject to the complexity and length of time required for the project a charge may be levied at the discretion of the Director.
The CCTV User Group Web site
Members have full, unrestricted access to all aspects of this web site (under password protection) free of charge. The Web Site comprises separate pages for Members and Visitors and it is hoped that in future this will become the central point of communication on CCTV matters.
Members pages initially include:-
News and Developments
Standards Committee Work
Help and advice forum
Legislation affecting CCTV
User Group Services
CCTV Service Providers – Links to their web sites
Links to the E-Groups discussion forum
Companies which provide services to CCTV Users are permitted to provide direct ‘hypertext’ links from this site to their own company web site. There is currently no charge for this service from those who are Corporate Members of the User Group.
Assessment and Accreditation
The CCTV User Group provides an Assessment and Accreditation service to enable authorities to see how their systems do in fact measure up to ‘Best Practice’ following an independent assessment.
Other Assessment and Accreditation schemes merely measure the operation of the specific scheme against the requirements of the BS 7958 Code of Practice for the Management and Operation of CCTV, which effectively sets a basic framework. Under the User Group scheme compliance with this BS would reflect in a Bronze award.
The CCTV User Group scheme however recognises excellence in the management of systems which can demonstrate that they go beyond the basic requirements of the BS by providing Silver and Gold awards.
Corporate Members of the CCTV User Group are eligible for a significant discount on the fees for Assessment and Accreditation.
Regional CCTV User Groups
The CCTV User Group welcomes the formation of Local / Regional CCTV User Groups and respects their formal autonomy from the CCTV User Group.
The CCTV User Group is however willing to provide such assistance and support to them as they might feel desirable, subject to availability of User Group resources or conflicts of interest, to ensure that they flourish and develop.
It would also welcome the opportunity for closer working and liaison with these groups, particularly in the dissemination of information, development of ‘Best Value’ and the setting of Standards.
The Director is willing to attend, (at no charge), regularly or whenever invited, any meetings of such Regional Groups subject to adequate notice and no other commitments.
CCTV User Group Discounts
The CCTV User Group will continually seek opportunities to agree ‘Discount Schemes’ on behalf of its members.
Currently the following arrangements exist, but it is always worth asking potential suppliers if they would give you a discount as a result of your membership.
Training - Various Training Providers offer 10% discount from their fees
(13) By , 27 Jul 2016, 19:18