New baseball-style headgear for NZ Police officers

Police will start wearing new baseball caps from September after months of head-scratching and trials.

The baseball caps went on trial in November across five police districts and the police college in Porirua.

“Rollout of one cap to each constabulary member is expected to start in September and run through to March 2022,” Assistant Commissioner Tusha Penny said this afternoon.

Staff feedback indicated the existing forage caps could be cumbersome and prone to being knocked off in dynamic situations, Penny added.

“These caps are a practical, comfortable alternative to the forage cap, which look completely in keeping with the operational uniform,” Commissioner Andy Coster said.

“We have listened to our frontline staff who have been calling for an alternative for
some time.”

Some specialist cops, including the Commercial Vehicle Safety Team, already wear caps, as do police in Australia and some other Commonwealth jurisdictions.

The new cap will replace caps some specialist Kiwi police in maritime and canine units used.

The cap’s final design was based on staff feedback.

“Rollout of one cap to each constabulary member is expected to start in September and run through to March 2022,” Penny added.

Police said the caps were being produced in New Zealand, with components sought from overseas.

Police said Covid-19’s impact on global supply chains might cause delays.

Other factors that might impact delivery time would be embroidery work required and the manufacturer’s production capacity.

The forage cap took over in 1995 from old hard helmets as the main item of police headgear.

Police Association magazine Police News said the caps were the brainchild of Senior Constable Mark “Chook” Taylor from Northland.


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