A Freedom of Information request to the Lancashire police and Crime Commissioner (Andrew Snowden) has uncovered that he has committed £40,000 of tax-payers money to purchase new hats for Lancashire police.
Andrew Snowden (who is on a publicly funded salary of around £80,000) has boasted his involvement in this use of tax-payers money by declaring that he has sat down with Chief Constable Chris Rowley (who is on a public-funded salary of around £160,000) to use £40,000 of tax-payers money to scrap the current hats for no other reason than to bring back previous scrapped traditional hats. Open scrapping publicly funded uniform that has means to improve policing.
In a post on NextDoor.com, Andrew Snowden says
Traditional police hats back in Lancashire. ?Traditional police hats are set for a comeback in Lancashire after Andrew, together with Chief Constable Chris Rowley decided to scrap baseball caps for all @LancashirePolice officers and PCSOs. He hopes it will be welcomed by the public – do you agree? ?♀?♂ In a move that is already proving popular amongst rank and file officers, traditional flat caps are set to be issued to all male officers, with female officers also given the option of wearing bowler hats. Andrew says: “This change is about reinforcing the figures of authority police officers should be in our communities. The uniform and appearance of police officers is an important part of that and I think the baseball caps were a backward step in how modern policing is presented given that now more than ever the values of respect, pride and professionalism are so important.
The comment infers that the decision has been made and that the Chief Constable “hopes it will be welcomed by the public”. It is curious why the PCC didn’t ask the public their views first before committing such a huge amount of money based on the ‘hopes of a Chief Constable’ and why no one has been open and honest with the costings.
At no time has Andrew Snowden informed the public of the associated costs of this ‘mad hatter’ scheme he openly boasts about, and that he has already committed to £40,000 of tax-payers money (behind closed doors).
The FOI asked (in relation to the scheme), “Please tell me whose idea this was and what public agreements were sought”
The response from Andrew Snowden was, “please be advised that whilst no public consultation was undertaken, the feedback received from the public has been overwhelmingly positive.”
Statistics have now been requested of this proclaimed public response.
We have (since the response below) further asked what was done with the previously issued (scrapped) traditional hats and why they are not being re-issued to avoid purchasing new hats.