Cambridgeshire Police Federation chair Liz Groom has welcomed an announcement that police officers can be equipped with a more effective Taser following Government approval of a new model.
Home Secretary Priti Patel’s announcement yesterday means that the more accurate, faster and compact Taser 7 is now available to all 43 forces in England and Wales.
Liz said: “Taser is an important piece of kit which protects officers and the public, and they’ve been used time and time again to prevent serious injury, or worse.
“The Federation has long been campaigning that all officers who want to use Taser should be trained in their use and be equipped with the devices.
“With assaults on officers rising, the least we should be able to do is give them the best equipment and the training they need to be able to protect themselves and the public.
“And there is a cost-saving element in the longer term to this as well, as the latest model has rechargeable batteries as opposed to the disposable ones, so all-round this announcement is to be welcomed.”
National Federation vice-chair Ché Donald has also welcomed the news.
He said: “Policing is tough and more of my colleagues are being assaulted so it’s essential they are given the best training, the best equipment and the support they need to do their job.
“Having access to Taser with the option to carry one if they wish to do so and pass the required training is part of that.”
In September last year, the Government announced £10 million in ring-fenced funding to significantly increase the number of officers carrying Taser.
Chief constables will decide how many officers can carry the new devices based on strategic assessments of threats and risks in their force areas.
Officers who want to use the new device will receive updated training and guidance, while forces will need to complete an extra record every time a Taser 7 is used to monitor the effects and performance of the device.