Level Two Refresher and Handcuffing Concerns to New Mexico Security Guards

Training with Handcuffs
Handcuffs in Training, Double Locking



If you are working in a security job that requires using a baton, chemical agent and handcuffs, you need annual training to show evidence of being competent to carry these items. The unarmed and communication skills in the Level Two Security Licensing course are critical in jobs where interacting with the public is required. Throughout the protective professions annual “certification” is a best practice if your job is to use these skills.

The Level Two program is only a familiarization. The State of New Mexico Private Investigators Board shortened the original program from a week to half the time.The separate endorsements, baton, chemical agent, and handcuffing were consolidated into an invalid short course.  A two day prerequisite “Core” course with legal aspects and communication skills of 16 hours was eliminated.

Security companies and officers cannot state that they are certified and competent to use intermediate force based on State of New Mexico Level Two program. Unfortunately,  political considerations have created this regulatory safety hazard to the security officers and the public. New Mexico security officers are not getting proper initial certification training and  continuous and relevant re-certification training in this tactically dangerous and high liability  area.

Standard times for initial training are much longer than provided for in the State of New Mexico Level Two program.  In the previous  NM security regulations prior to 2014 and nationally the program content with physical and written testing was significantly more training than the current Level Two  program.

NM Security Regulation Initial Hours Training Prior to 2014  (44 hours)

Core Course Legal and communications 16 hour

Handcuffing  8 hours

Baton 8 hours

Chemical Agent  4 hours

Required First Aid/ CPR 8 hours

National Standards for Initial  Intermediate Use of Force Training (52 hours)

Unarmed Skills/ Defensive Tactics 24 hours

Handcuffing 8 hours

Baton 8 hours

Chemical Agent 4 hours

Required First Aid/ CPR 8 hours

Note: Legal Training is usually about 4 hours, and

communications training can vary greatly in the time utilized. Ref “Core Course” above.


***Current New Mexico Program Approximately 20 hours

Program content and times have not been established.


Standard material and course times were shortened to force all officers to have minimal familiarization  training in each of these topics. This content is not certifiable and does not have evidence of proficiency. The Use of Force and control topics in the Level Two program are a high liability security activity. Detaining and handcuffing  is as dangerous as firearms situations.

Being able to function in violent situations requires weekly training according evidence from studies done in the military.  Use of force skills training should also be augmented by bi -weekly physical conditioning. Yes, this is likely off the clock and unpaid time. Hopefully, you will choose a company that recognizes and manages the security officers and services it provides.

The Expandable Baton is an excellent weapon.


The Expandable Baton is an excellent weapon.


If your company contracts require physical intervention and subduing there are several items needed. A vetted and approved subduing policy checked by an attorney, multiple officers assigned, continuous and relevant company training.

Compensation is a necessary topic. If a company has subduing subjects as a regular activity, this is a high level activity. Level Two New Mexico Security Guards need to be fairly compensated for the skill and judgement needed to man these types of contracts. Mistakes in subduing subjects can cost tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills, litigation and lost contracts. It is well worth having well compensated, experienced and trained officers for this type of job requirement.


Live fire chemical agent testing
Live fire chemical agent testing and qualification is a routine activity.


Plan to take a “refresher” of the Level Two annually and do your individual training weekly. If you are working in a job that has a history of actively using intermediate force the frequency of certification must be higher. School and hospital security are examples of security jobs that likely have a need for semiannual or more certifications in intermediate skills, especially  verbal communications.  The schedule has a class offered monthly you can use.

Ask your company to sponsor a Level Two refresher training or full certification courses for the company. This is a major safety issue for you, your company and the public.