Police Federation hits out at officer uniform plans

Police at Catherine House in Stanhope Road Portsmouth on April 19 after a suspicious device was found in the building. Picture: Byron Melton

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THE head of Hampshire Police Federation has said the suggestion that officers should wear their uniforms to and from work was created in a political dream world.

Put forward by think tank Policy Exchange, the idea is an attempt to increase the number of visible police officers on the streets by 1,200.

But John Apter, chairman of the federation which represents Hampshire officers, said: ‘This report demonstrates that think tanks are out of touch when it comes to matters in the real world – those with any knowledge of policing will understand this.

‘The report suggests that officers should be required to wear uniform on the way to work and then on their way home from work, as this will improve visibility.

‘The reality is that police officers are on duty 24/7 and have a duty to intervene in incidents, whether on or off duty. In some cases police officers would not wish for their neighbours to know what they did for a living for fear of exposing their families to threats.’

Policy Exchange also suggested civilian staff did back office work instead of officers.