Anorak News | A Clockwork Police Force: 16-Year-Old PCSOs

A Clockwork Police Force: 16-Year-Old PCSOs

by | 13th, August 2007

police-toy.jpgIT’S an appy polly loggy of a police force. “Babies on the beat,” says the Mail’s front-page headline.

Here’s the young millicent in his blue shlem and matching jumper and trousers. He’s only 16, but he’s already got his own pad and pencil.

He uses the trappings of power to issue fixed penalty notices (FPNs) for cycling on the pavement, dog fouling, graffiti and fly posting.

He’s not a baby, of course. The mail exaggerates. Babies would make poor policemen, what with their being unable to decipher right from wrong, black from white and are unable to work out pockets.

These two 16-year-olds are newly recruited police community support officers. They have joined the rank and file at Thames Valley Police.

The teenagers are two years too young to join the full police force. But they are not without power.

In addition to the FPN, these Nadsats can detain a suspect for up to 30 minutes, using “reasonable force” if necessary, until an 18-year-old fulltime copper arrives, possibly in his own car with a flashing blue light.

The droogs can make under-18s drinking in a public area “surrender” alcohol. They can seize drugs. They can search for alcohol and tobacco and seize baccy from under 16s.

The Mail is unimpressed. Shadow Home Secretary David Davis calls it a “reckless approach to public safety”.

But these youth are being paid between £17,000-£20,000 a year, depending on hours.

And if they bag a successful haul, they will be able to spend their cash on useful things like a pension and innersoles, rather than drinks and drugs, of which they will have tapped into a plentiful and legitimate supply…

Posted: 13th, August 2007 | In: Tabloids Comments (6) | TrackBack | Permalink