MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - Sunday marks the 112th meeting between the Minnesota Vikings and Detroit Lions, but it will be the first U.S. Bank Stadium event for the new security contractor after the firing of Monterrey Security last week.
The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority and stadium operator SMG confirmed the the decision follows separate investigations into Monterrey's operations by SMG and the Minnesota Board of Private Detective and Protective Agent Services, which regulates private security firms in the state. An investigation by Minneapolis law firm Maslon found Monterrey failed to comply with state licensing requirements for its employees and failed to conduct adequate background checks.
Whelan Event Services and G4S have replaced Monterrey, and the two companies held a job fair to fill positions and actually retained a good number of Monterrey employees.
At Friday’s board meeting, MSFA CEO Rick Evans stressed the decision to terminate Monterrey was based on administrative failures, not lapses in security.
“There’s been lots of discussion about coverage for this week’s Vikings game and events, but we are confident that everything is in great shape as we move into this event weekend,” Evans said.
Joint statement from MSFA and SMG
"The safety and security of all guests and employees of U.S. Bank Stadium is the MSFA and SMG’s highest priority. This past May, SMG was made aware of the State of Minnesota Board of Private Detective and Protective Agent Services' investigation into Monterrey Security’s operations at U.S. Bank Stadium. Subsequently, SMG initiated its own investigation into Monterrey’s operations to ensure that it was performing in compliance with established regulations and policy in accordance with its contract with SMG. That investigation is now complete.
"Apart from any action that the Minnesota Board of Private Detective and Protective Agent Services might take with respect to licensing Monterrey Security, SMG has terminated its relationship with the organization; Monterrey Security will no longer be providing support at U.S. Bank Stadium. Immediately following this action, Whelan Event Services and G4S began providing security for the stadium’s events and 24-hour security needs. Both of these service providers have a current workforce that is licensed by the State of Minnesota to perform these duties. Whelan Event Services and G4S are committed to continue hiring Minnesotans and are hosting several upcoming job fairs at U.S. Bank Stadium.
"SMG works with several companies that provide security services at the facilities it manages throughout the country. These firms are selected by a fair, data-driven process that is based on their demonstrated ability to perform security operations; and in Minnesota that same process was followed. Monterrey Security was selected after being licensed by the Minnesota Board of Private Detective and Protective Agent Services. While Monterrey failed to comply with established regulations and policies on an administrative basis, independent assessments of security at U.S. Bank Stadium have validated the existing operational security procedures. The safety and security of all guests and employees of U.S. Bank Stadium continues to be our top priority."
Minnesota Vikings statement
Minnesota Vikings Chief Operating Officer Kevin Warren released the following statement:
"Vikings leadership met with SMG and MSFA principals yesterday to review the results of the investigation completed by Maslon LLP, and we fully support SMG’s decision to terminate its agreement with Monterrey Security. We have confidence in the selections of Whelan Security and G4S and will assist with the transition plan that has been presented in order to be fully prepared for this Sunday’s game. Whelan Security has a long history of providing security for Vikings games at the Metrodome, and both security providers have licensed workforces capable of performing expected duties at U.S. Bank Stadium. Providing a safe and enjoyable experience for every individual attending or participating in events at U.S. Bank Stadium will always remain our top priority. We will defer any further comment to SMG and the MSFA."