Any police officer who wishes to be trained, have access and deploy with a Taser, should have the opportunity, the Chairman of Staffordshire Police Federation has said.

The Home Office announced on Sunday 1 March the funding for additional Taser uplift.

Staffordshire Police was not eligible to bid for the funding as it was only available for forces who wanted to increase Taser numbers and not upgrade existing equipment. The force announced this week that it is to invest in “new advanced Taser devices which will give greater protection to officers when carrying out their duties.”

A statement added: “The force, which has around 350 specially-trained Taser officers, is to introduce the upgraded X2 Tasers, which are double shot weapons, capable of firing twice before requiring a reload. This is in addition to the armed police officers within force, who also carry Taser.”

Phil reacted: “It remains my view that any officer who wishes to be trained, have access and deploy with a taser, should have the opportunity. I think it is important to recognise that the force is investing in Tasers (X2), this is welcome news, which will enhance officer safety.

“90% of emergency workers who are assaulted are police officers, this is unacceptable. I have been reassured by the chief officer team that we have sufficient resources trained and this will be under constant review, this is something I will monitor closely and work alongside the force.”

Phil added: “Taser is an important piece of equipment for the safety of officers and frontline staff. Taser was deployed 209 times in 2019 and discharged 15 times.

“Being a Taser officer involves enhanced training, discipline, decision making and is voluntary. My members deserve the best equipment available in order to protect themselves and the public.”