Image credit - APEX
A police force in rural Devon has trained firefighters to act as special constables to help solve the problem of slow response times.
The firefighters, who received two months of training, are able to arrest people, but have been told they must prioritise fighting fires.
Supporters of the scheme claim it will offer members of the public more reassurance and help reduce crime.
But several unions have criticised the move as simply ‘paper[ing] over the cracks’ and said that the scheme blurs the line between emergency response and law enforcement. Simon Kempton, of the Police Federation, said that it exposes ‘how scant resources are in some rural areas’.
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