Prison Officer Body Armour
Working as an officer in a prison can be an extremely dangerous job. Many people do not appreciate the full extent of just how intimidating being a prison officer can be. In a prison, there are often only a small handful of prison officers who are expected to keep the prison running smoothly and the prisoners in line. There are often hundreds, if not thousands of potentially dangerous prisoners that an officer is expected to be in very close contact with, and often the officers are not armed with a gun for protection. For an officer to fulfil their role, it is crucial that they feel safe and confident in their environment, and the best way to do this is through using body armour.
Most prisons are more than likely to issue body armour to correction officers when they first arrive at the prison, however this armour may not always be in the best of condition. There are a lot of unanswered questions that come with an issued protective vest and a correction officer may not feel at ease when he or she is wearing an unfamiliar vest. It is important to ascertain that the right protection levels that are needed to work around intimates are being offered, and that the body armour has been properly cared for by the previous officer using it. Body armour is designed to give professionals protection from different levels of threats, as well as providing them with the peace of mind needed in order to carry out their duties successfully. If a prison officer feels uncomfortable with the vest they are wearing and doesn’t feel completely confident that they will be adequately protected in case of a threat, they will not be able to perform their role effectively and this could have terrible consequences. For these reasons, many prison officers have decided to take the matter of their personal safety into their own hands, and have opted to purchase private gear privately.
Before ordering any body armour, it is important for employees to have a conversation with their superiors about the possibility of wearing personal protective gear inside the prison. There will most likely be some regulations that will need to be met in order for an individual to wear their own vest in prison, and it is important that these rules are abided by. For example, the vest may need to be a specific colour or style, or the prison may have rules stating that only covert (hidden) vests may be worn inside the prison. It is vital to have all the information needed before making an order. When ordering the body armour, correction officers need to decide what level of protection they need in order to feel safe. In order to do this, they need to ascertain what threats may face them. Many of the vests issued by prisons are designed to offer protection against small arms fire, but may offer little or no protection against stab or spike threats. In a prison, it is unlikely that an inmate will get access to firearms – the most prominent threat in a prison is likely to be from improvised weapons such as shanks or objects that have been sharpened. Therefore, a vest with protection from stab and spike weapons is fundamental. If a guard is in close contact with prisoners, they need to be sure that they are protected from the real dangers they could encounter. That is why stab and spike proof body armour is a must for any prison officer.