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Negotiations on force’s plans for Taser

4WEST Yorkshire Police Federation is consulting and negotiating with the force on the current Taser deployment policy.

Nick Smart, Federation Chairman, said officers “should be as well armed and as well protected as can possibly be, and if that means each officer having a Taser then we would advocate that.”

He added: “We are working with the force locally to maximise the use of Taser because we are aware there’s a significant amount of Tasers that are left idle in stations on a daily basis, and we want to maximise the usage of Taser.

“So we’re actually in negotiations and consulting with the force over the terms of deployment policy, because that also affects operation effectiveness.

“Going to jobs where you have more staff with the appropriate kit will potentially minimise officer assaults in the future.

“So it’s something we’re very keen to work with the force on and see if we can improve its use to maximise efficiency and officer safety.”

Nationally, Chief Constables across England and Wales have announced that they have no current plans to issue Taser to all the country’s police officers.

However, the National Police Chiefs’ Council said that “chief constables make the operational decisions in their force areas and can increase the number of Taser-trained officers if their strategic threat and risk assessments show there is a need”.

The matter was discussed at a meeting of chief constables on 20 January.

NPCC Lead for Less Lethal Weapons, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, added: “Chief constables have considered a wider roll out of Tasers to officers across the UK.

“Chiefs discussed the operational requirements for Taser and calls from the Police Federation for all officers who want a Taser to be given one.

“We have agreed that the current threat and risk picture in the UK does not justify a roll out of Taser to all officers who volunteer at this time; a roll out of this kind could challenge the UK policing model and the principle of policing by consent.”

Date posted: February 5, 2016

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