Gerard O'Dea

European Advisor

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About Gerard

“Ulimately, your personal safety is your responsibility and the decisions you make will determine the outcome of any confrontation – take comfort in being prepared.”

I consult with and advise organisations in Health Care, Social Care and Security sectors on the most effective means of resolving conflict using non-physical and – when necessary – physical means.

My particular interest is in the psychological and physiological factors in high-risk confrontations, which benefits my clients with a pragmatic and practical approach.

I primarily work on a small-group basis with schools and educational institutions, teams in care homes for older people with dementia or who look after children in care, community support teams who work alone, or security teams. My goal is always to bring safety and dignity to all those involved in high-stress interactions.

Notable clients that I have worked with are the NHS, the State Hospital, the Prison Service, HM Courts Service, Four Seasons Healthcare, the Brain Injury Trust, the Disabilities Trust, Healthcare Authority Abu Dhabi and Dubai Healthcare Authority.

In 2014 I published “Lone Working Personal Safety – A Guidebook for Health and Social Care Workers”. It encapsulates the breadth of topics necessary for olo workers to use to make good personal safety decisions when they work alone in the community.

I am currently working on bringing the ‘Verbal Defense and Influence’ methodology to the UK and internationally through my work with frontline teams and in organising annual Instructor-level training certifications.


Author of Lone Working Personal Safety (A guidebook for Health & Social Care Workers) Published in 2014

University of Stirling BA Business Studies and Japanese (1998)

Certified Expert Witness (Criminal Cases) Cardiff University Law School / Bond Solon (2012)

National Federation for Personal Safety (NFPS) Accredited Instructor since 2007

National Federation for Personal Safety (NFPS) Licensed Centre for Delivery of BTEC Awards

National Federation for Personal Safety (NFPS) Certified Violence at Work Risk Assessor

BTEC Level 4 Professional Award in Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector (PTLLS)

BTEC Level 3 Advanced Award in Physical Intervention (SIA)

BTEC Level 3 Advanced Award in Delivery of Conflict Management Training

BTEC Level 3 Advanced Award in Advanced Self Defence Instruction

BTEC Level 3 Advanced Award in Physical Restraint Practice

BTEC Level 3 Advanced Award in Coaching & Instruction of Physical Restraint

BTEC Level 3 Advanced Award in Safe and Effective use of Restraint Devices

BTEC Level 3 Advanced Award in Safe and Effective use of the Emergency Response Belt

UK Regional Director and Coach for Functional Edge System Self-Protection Training, working in cooperation with Tony Torres, Founder and Head Coach based in Sierra Vista, AZ. I am responsible for the technical development and support of two tiers of trainers who subscribe to this methodology in the UK.

Chartered Institute for Environmental Health

Level 2 Award in Manual Handling

Level 3 Award in Principles and Practice of Risk Assessment

Certified by the Institute for Prevention of In-Custody Deaths (IPICD) as a Use-of-Force Trainer

Certified at the NHS National Conflict Resolution syllabus Familiarisation Seminar

Certified at the AELE Workshop on Legal, Psychological and Biomechanical Aspects of Officer-Involved Lethal and Less-Lethal Use of Force.


Protecting Scottish Public Services Workers National Conference Glasgow (2007)

Control & Restraint General Services Association National Conference Edinburgh (2010)