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Hospital Security - do they look too much like cops?


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Just thought i'd start a topic to gather a viewpoint of NHS Security Guards at hospitals.

Whilst this isn't intended to be a "lets bash security guards" topic i'd be interested to hear your views really.

I'm not sure if it's the same everywhere but certainly where I am based I generally visit 3 main hospitals for the usual jobs, S.136, RTCs, Assaults etc and I have noticed that back when we used to wear white shirts and black trousers so did the security guards.

When we changed to black t-shirts and black combat pants...so did they! I really think this was a deliberate decision made by their management to make them look as close to police officers as possible possibly to reduce assaults perhaps?

Personally I don't like the idea, they look like cops and I once attended a job at the hospital of a schitzophrenic male trying to stab a doctor in the neck with a needle and the nurses in the ward advised us not to approach the male as the police would be there soon and didn't realise we WERE the police ha.

So what do you all think?

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  • Altair

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  • Forlorn Hope

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  • pottheed

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Forlorn Hope

It's actually the other way round in a lot of places, black security uniforms worn for years before the police had black

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It's actually the other way round in a lot of places, black security uniforms worn for years before the police had black

Pretty good point that mate. I can see that being the case actually. I guess it's just with them wearing the same uniform as my force essentially (where I am anyway) and then changing it when we change ours is why i'm wondering about it.

Edited by The 82nd
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Dave SYP

I think police officers should go back to wearing a proper uniform, then there would be no argument!

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Forlorn Hope

I ventured into Kent today- I don't do it often but had to, large shopping centre officers on patrol in black, security on patrol in black, civil enforcement officers on patrol in black, easy to distinguish even from a distance

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Security at my local hospital look about as different from police officers as is possible really. I've never seen police wearing a lime green shirt with a gaudy tie in the UK. Even if they did look like cops I can't say I would care.

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HampshireSaint

They may wear all black but so do a lot of companies. As long as they have the word security and we have the word police I don't see what the issue is. You only need to read the word to work out what they are.

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Well my post is more just to see what the general opinion is really. Whilst people within the police may be able to tell the difference I dare say the average member of public may not, my earlier example being where qualified nurses actually mistook my colleague and I for security until we told them we were the police. These nurses were obviously used to dealing with police officers and security yet still didn't notice the police logo.

In my opinion, I think dressing security up as police officers or police officers looking similar to security could be quite dangerous. An example that comes to mind would be a drunk coming into A+E who turns violent, he/she are unlikely to notice the difference in uniform and could either assume it's a cop and assault the security guard OR a member of the public may go over to security assuming they are police asking them to intervene with this drunken person kicking off and they won't (where I am anyway security at hospitals will not lay hands on ANYONE unless they are detained under a section confirmed by the doctors).

I like the suggestion that the police uniform should be different and distinctive which at the moment isn't the case. You only have to look from force to force to see that we all wear different body armour, have different kit etc.

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pottheed

I do not agree the uniform should be the same.

It is warmer in cornwall than it is in north scotland, so therefore different kit is needed such as snow survival, better jackets etc

Edited by pottheed
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I do not agree the uniform should be the same.

It is warmer in cornwall than it is in north scotland, so therefore different kit is needed such as snow survival, better jackets etc

Well you could issue everyone winter kit such as jackets, wooly hats etc for that and places where it's great weather wouldn't need to use it unless it was freezing. I regularly use mine in winter and it probably isn't as cold as it would be in bonny scotland.

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pottheed
Well you could issue everyone winter kit such as jackets, wooly hats etc for that and places where it's great weather wouldn't need to use it unless it was freezing. I regularly use mine in winter and it probably isn't as cold as it would be in bonny scotland.

But that costs more :)

My kit in northern constabulary was proper warm and it was needed and It cost much,much more than my BTP kit has.

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The most confusing thing for me when it comes to uniform in a hospital is working out who is a nurse/doctor/porter etc. More should be done to combat this problem.

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BlueLight85

Spent several hours at East Mids Hospital in London for a job. Security guards there wear kit pretty much indistinguishable from Met apart from no shoulder slides, and "SECURITY" on back of the stab vest, and lack of baton/spray. Can't remember if they had cuffs or not.

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Londonbased

I have no problem with security guards or civil enforcement officers "looking like police" (whatever that means)

As others have pointed out, police often copy security staff, not the other way round.

Are security meant to change their uniforms because the police have decided to look like them?

It's when security guards start acting like the police that you have the problems.

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So the general opinion so far is people don't have an issue with it generally speaking and it's probably more likely that the police copied the uniform of security for where most of you are. Reasonable arguments there.

Where I am though, their uniform changed a few months after ours did so as you can imagine this made me curious as to why exactly that move was made. Cynically I would say that was to look like police officers but objectively speaking perhaps it was to follow suit with the rest of the country.

Thanks for taking part in my topic folks. :thumbsup:

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