At least that's how it's been for years. Yet in the words of Claire Sambrook, writing brilliantly for Open Democracy, now 'Corporate Power stamps its brand on British Policing'; Lincolnshire police uniforms now find their epaulettes branded by the brazen red, white and black of the G4S logo. According to a BBC report, the uniforms are to be worn by 200 staff, including front counter staff at police stations. We're seeing a "strategic partnership" with G4S firmly in control.
On the first of April 2012, 540 civilian Lincolnshire police workers turned into employees of G4S, the largest security company in the UK. Alongside managing frontline counter service, G4S employees will run the crime management bureau, the central ticket office and collisions unit, the criminal justice unit, the resource management unit and firearms licensing. This is hardy the back-room presence that the government claimed private contractors would have within the police. Put succinctly by Sambrook:
As for the corporate statement, "There are no plans to introduce the dual logo elsewhere," it is a warning. It does not come from the government, or from a Minister speaking to Parliament. The sentence carries a huge, silent word at the end: "yet".Paul McKeever, chairman of the Police Federation, immdiately after acknowledging that changing the uniforms will have an adverse effect on the visual presence of warranted officers, made the following statement:
"G4S aren't doing anything wrong. They are doing what any private company would want to do, which is make profit and expand their organisation."I'm not sure whether I could ever agree with that.