Call for all frontline cops in South Yorkshire to be issued with Tasers
Calls have been made for all frontline police officers in South Yorkshire to be issued with Tasers.
Police chiefs in the county have previously said they want at least half of all officers to be issued with Tasers as part of their day-to-day kit, but the South Yorkshire branch of the Police Federation want all those on the frontline to have one.
Federation chairman Steve Kent said while Taser provision South Yorkshire is good, all officers should have access to the devices.
He spoke out after Northamptonshire Police’s Chief Constable, Nick Adderley, promised to give all his officers a Taser if they want one, after being reportedly ‘sick of the assaults’ on his colleagues.
Mr Kent said: “For me, all frontline officers should be given Taser; that has to be the ultimate endgame.
“I am more than happy and pleased with the approach the South Yorkshire force is taking in aiming for the 50 per cent mark, which is a significantly higher number than a lot of forces.
“We’re on a really good road when it comes to Taser, and I fully applaud that.
“They have been some anxieties around it, but public support is there (for Taser), so credit to the force.
“Ultimately, my policy point on this and our policy point as a Federation is that every frontline officer who’s required to wear protective equipment should have a Taser.”
He said having a Taser can provide officers with reassurance on the frontline, especially when working alone.
“We know that even though our policy is that officers should be double-crewed at all times, sometimes that won’t happen whether that be because the force decides to deploy officers as single-crewed or if officers are out on enquiries where it’s not appropriate to double-crew. To have Taser gives them that extra bit of protection; it’s a deterrent,” added Mr Kent.
“You’ve got a really bright yellow light on your body armour, and when I used to carry my Taser, you could see people looking at it.
“When you have a confrontation, you can see people looking at it, and I only ever had to use mine once in five years carrying it. It’s another part of the shield.”