Sunglasses ban for cops draws dim views

Sunglasses ban for cops draws dim views

A policeman directs traffic on Sri Ayuddhaya Road on Monday. (Photo by Pornprom Satrabhaya)
A policeman directs traffic on Sri Ayuddhaya Road on Monday. (Photo by Pornprom Satrabhaya)

A new order banning city police on duty from wearing sunglasses has attracted criticism.

The March 2 directive signed by deputy national police chief Pol Gen Chalermkiat Srivorakhan bans Metropolitan Police Bureau (MPB) officers on duty from wearing sunglasses. It also ordered officers to dress properly and keep their hair short.

The order is classified as very urgent, meaning all police in the capital have to strictly obey it.

Deputy MPB commissioner Pol Maj Gen Panurat Lakboon on Sunday relayed the order to all city police units.

The deputy MPB chief said he personally disagreed with the ban, arguing that sunglasses are necessary for officers working outdoor in bright sunlight, according to Daily News online.

In an interview with Matichon online, Pol Gen Chalermkiat defended the ban, saying some officers had tainted the police image by wearing trendy or mirrored sunglasses.

He then said that officers would be allowed to wear 'appropriate' sunglasses to protect their eyes if necessary - even though the written order appeared to issue a blanket ban on all shades.

Pol Gen Chalermkiat said the same order will later be applied to all police units across the country.

Lawyer Kerdphol Kaewkerd said on his Facebook account that the ban will not benefit the Royal Thai Police Office and public. It would cause eye problems for police on duty, added the lawyer, who provides free legal aid to people fighting for justice.

Police on duty should instead be trained to improve their communication skills with suspects and the general public, he suggested.


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