“Police chiefs will consider the possibility of offering a gun to every frontline police officer in England and Wales, to counter the threat of a marauding terrorist attack,” theguardian.com reports. “A discussion paper on the subject has been drawn up for the next meeting of the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), which wants to look at how to boost armed police numbers to deal with a crisis, following the atrocities in Manchester and London.”
Interestingly, the paper suggests relaxing the extensive training “armed response officers” undergo for armed British “bobbies” on the beat.
The paper also suggests that beat officers who are now unarmed would get about two weeks of training in how to use a handgun. That is much less training than the six weeks for fully qualified armed officers.
he beat officers would then get a day of refresher training and re-accreditation twice a year. The upside of this option is that police chiefs might get enough officers volunteering, and it would boost the number of officers who can handle a gun in a crisis more quickly than other options.
However, handguns cost £500 each, and training would further stretch resources, as officers would have to take time off to train.
[Note: Britain is a socialist state stretched to the financial breaking point by its spending on social services, such as pensions (£159b), social security (£112b) and the National Health Service (£146b).]
So how’s this idea — arming “front line” officers — going down amongst the rank and file?
In a recent survey of Met officers, the Metropolitan Police Federation found just over half said they would carry a gun routinely if asked to do so. One in 10 said they would quit rather than carry a firearm.
What does that tell you?