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Over our heads

Cops in baseball caps? They do it overseas, so why not here, especially in the sunny north?

Senior Constable Mark Taylor, a member of Police Association’s Mid-Far North Committee and a conference delegate, has come up with a design that he thinks shows promise. He’s just got to convince the top brass...

Mark says the idea is not to replace the current forage cap, but for police officers to have a more practical option when working frontline in their BAS (body armour system) or with specialist groups, such as Delta, search and rescue, CVIU, etc, who already wear different kinds of “police caps”.

“Only about 20 per cent of staff wear a forage cap when they’re out and about,” he says, “but 95 per cent of those I have spoken to would wear a baseball-type cap if it was available.

“Forage caps could still be worn for formal occasions, or court, and when not wearing BAS.”

Mark points out that many other Western frontline police wear caps, including in Australia and Britain and many states in America.

“That’s not to say we would be following the pack, but we would be moving into the 21st century with a type of headwear that is practical and modern for general frontline use.”

Backed by the Mid-Far North Committee, which provided funding, Mark got his cap produced by a Whangarei design store and sent it out for feedback.

Some suggestions were to increase the police badge size, make it the same shade of blue as the BAS, make the checks on the side blue and white, the same colouring as the checks on the BAS, and having “Pirihimana” embossed under “Police” at the back of the cap.

Mark also did a “night trial” of the cap, finding that “it was pretty visible under street lights”. Staff were not keen on having reflectorised badging on the cap.

He’s approached management with his design and says the response so far has been “luke warm”.

Let us know what you think about Mark’s cap and if it’s time for New Zealand Police to consider bringing in baseball-style caps as an everyday, practical alternative to the forage cap.

Email editor@policeassn.org.nz

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