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'Security Guards Die 20 Years Younger'

Thursday, May 31, 2018


UK’s security professionals – who put their lives on the line during terror attacks - have a lower life expectancy than people born in Afghanistan or Iraq.

A shocking new study from GMB, the union for security professionals, reveals security guards die 20 years younger than the national average.

An official estimate completed for GMB by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows the mean age of death of people working in security professions, people aged 20 and over, is 61.9 years. [1]

The average age of death in the UK is 81.4, while the global life expectancy is 72. Afghanistan has a life expectancy of 62.7 and Iraq 69.8. [2]

By far the biggest cause of death among those in the security professions is ischaemic heart diseases, malignant neoplasm of trachea bronchus and lung and chronic lower respiratory diseases.

The shocking findings will be discussed at GMB’s 101st annual congress, which takes place in Brighton from June 4 – 6.

Roger Jenkins, GMB National Officer, said:

“It is absolutely shocking security professionals here in the UK have a lower life expectancy than people born in Afghanistan.

“These are the people we rely on, the first on the scene after atrocities like Westminster Bridge or the Manchester Arena.

“Despite the enormous responsibilities they have, there is a misconception in this country that security work is somehow an unskilled profession.

“What our security members need is more support in dealing with the stress, mental health and other related health issues that can often go hand in hand with this kind of potentially traumatic work.

“Security employers need to pledge to work with GMB to tackle this shameful problem.”


Contact: GMB Press office 07958 156846

[1] The ONS estimates, which were compiled following a request from GMB, can be found here:


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