Moaning at the police for ‘being on their phones’ seems to be a ‘thing’ at the moment, especially on social media.
‘I don’t pay you to be on your phone’ along with cries (and tweets) of ‘Why are you playing games on your phone’ seem to be ‘ringing’ out all over the place (no pun intended).
By what the people who moan seem to be forgetting, is that most police officers radios look similar to mobile phones and most officers get issued with small PDAs which, again, look like mobile phones.
These PDAs and ‘mobile phones’ mean that the police officers who are issued with them can spend more time out on the streets and less time cooped up in dilapidated offices putting crime reports on ancient computers.
Insp Paul Laity (Devon & Cornwall Constabulary) is the mobile policing lead for Plymouth’s response teams.
He also is making sure that each of his officers is fully clued-in to their many benefits of PDA’s.
Talking about the police’s use of PDA and mobile devices, Insp Laity told Plymouth Live:
“I saw a social media post from West Midlands Police – on Twitter – a while ago where an officer was working on his PDA, checking police logs of incidents, when someone walked past and said ‘what are we paying our taxes for, they just stand there and text or are on Google’.
“We launched the PDAs a few years ago now, and they have become invaluable.
“It’s just a natural progression from the old radios and the police notebook and pen to the more modern police radio, and now we’ve got something a little bit more 21st Century.
“The PDA can be used for a whole host of tasks – from electronic pocket notebook, translator, photo evidence, maps and emails to specialist work with designed apps.
“We can view and update our Storm logs, directly updating incidents from the scene or while en-route to one; we can view and update crime inquiries seconds after they’ve been reported; we can take statements from victims or witnesses at the scene of an incident which can be processed much faster; we are able to read intelligence briefings about an individual or location as we respond to a call.
“We can check with the DVLA about vehicles, check whether property is stolen via the National Mobile Property Register, record joint decision making with other emergency responders. “
So there we have it. If you see a police officer ‘on their phone’ then the chances are that they are doing what you pay them to do; i.e. work.
But let us not forget that, just like everyone else who works, members of the emergency services are allowed to have a break.
And if they use this rare break to text their partner then what’s the problem?
Let us know what you think in the comments below