The Current Challenges Facing Public Order Units

The 2021 Global Peace Index [1] recently published that riots, general strikes and anti-government demonstrations around the world have increased by 244% over the last decade – a growing problem that law enforcement in Canada and the United States will have to deal with face-to-face. Proper training, department organization and new initiatives in gathering intelligence are critical in helping law enforcement identify and properly manage these events before, during and after they happen. However, when these gatherings turn violent, law enforcement users need to also be properly prepared and properly equipped to remain effective protecting the public, themselves and other officers. Today’s police users now must respond to a much more organized, visible, and energized crowd that can erupt quickly into riots and disorder. If the gathering becomes volatile, the best case scenario is that the police user can mediate the situation before it turns violent. This requires new ways of thinking about crowd management and tactics in identifying and de-escalating threats.

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De-Escalation

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OFFICER SAFETY

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NEW TOOLS FOR NEW CHALLENGES

DE-ESCALATION

THE APPEARANCE OF LAW ENFORCEMENT as a Guardian, not gladiator

One of the most effective new tactics in de-escalation is presenting law enforcement as non-oppositional in their appearance; as a guardian, not a gladiator. Which is why we strongly suggest that agencies invest in low-profile protective solutions. Police users now have the option of deploying with discreet bodily protection that is low-profile, as opposed the traditional Robo-Cop style protective gear. This new style of protective equipment can in itself contribute to de-escalation by presenting a non-aggressive posture to the public. Additionally, with every move being filmed, and every interaction scrutinized, the reality of what is transpiring can be ‘spun’, regardless of what actually transpired. Quite simply, optics can override facts. Equipment manufacturers have made impressive developments in designing gear that can keep police users safe while presenting a non-aggressive posture to the public. Our choice of manufacturer, and leader in this development, is Xion Protective Gear, who provides discrete protection solutions that combine cutting-edge D3O® impact protection in a breathable stretch base layer build specifically for the law enforcement market.

"One of the most effective new tactics in de-escalation is presenting law enforcement as non-oppositional in their appearance; as a guardian, not a gladiator."

Xion Protective Gear’s Discrete Deployment System (DDS) is a full body protection solution that preserves the police user’s full range of movement and maneuverability.  Rampart carries three product lines of Xion DDS. All three lines provide extensive protection to your extremities and vital areas, and each have their own features built to suit different requirements. The PG1 line is a lightweight protection garment built for breathability and maneuverability. It features perforated material that provides long term comfort for users who may be active during their shift. The PG2 is a 4-way stretch jersey that comes with upgraded back protection and ribcage protectors. And finally, the FR-PG3 top and bottom offers the same blunt impact protection and is made with fire resistant material. Rampart can work with you to help determine which model best suits your unique requirements.

XION - DDS - PG1

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OFFICER SAFETY

Purpose built modern public order helmets

An unfortunate reality is that de-escalation techniques and crowd management tactics cannot always protect against the escalation of an agitated group or those arriving with the intention of violence. For situations where violence has escalated and there are serious threats of harm to the officer – advancements in head and eye protection have become some of the most valuable gear upgrades in keeping police users safe. Modern head protection built for public order use has many facets and features built specifically to address the threats and environments of a riot. Repeated blunt impact protection, fire and caustic agent resistance, compatibility with gas masks, and eye protection from laser pointers are all key attributes of a modern public order helmet. When looking at the best solution for public order head protection, we can examine the P100N from Schuberth, which comes in multiple price tiers. This scalable, modular public order helmet was developed with the full weight of the Schuberth research and development team behind it, who specialize in manufacturing cutting-edge head protection for many types of use – from heavy industrial head protection to Formula 1 helmets. Unlike other manufacturers, Schuberth designed the P100N from the beginning to be a public order helmet. The P100N is purpose-built and guided by extensive research and user feedback to specifically support public order law enforcement users. A common and dangerous mistake we sometimes see is officers repurposing helmets  – for example ballistic helmets – that provide ballistic protection but little to no blunt impact resistance.

"Modern head protection built for public order use has many facets and features built specifically to address the threats and environments of a riot."

The P100N helmet from Schuberth combines multiple layers of aramid composite with an EPS foam backing. When the helmet is attacked, the exterior aramid fiber layers delaminate (or separate), dissipating some of the force before it reaches the interior EPS foam. The process of delamination also means that any damage to the helmet is localized and ensures that the protective ability of the helmet will not be compromised after a single impact. The aramid composite also ensures the highest level of stab protection in the industry. The interior of the helmet is made up of specialty EPS foam that further dissipates the impact by greatly reducing the peak spike of energy to the head and brain. The P100N also protects officers from new and different classes of weapons. The helmet is coated in a flame and chemical resistant lacquer, and the LPA version of the helmet comes complete with laser protection that can be deployed up and down as needed. It also integrates with the Avon HM50 to provide seamless respiratory protection from harmful airborne agents.

SCHUBERTH P100N

A protected police user is one who can remain effective and in-control. The weapons used against police users have changed significantly in the past decade, and head protection has in some cases lagged behind. The Schuberth P-100n provides the best in technology and features to protect police users at price points that are affordable for most agencies.

P100N BUYING GUIDE

The Schuberth P100N comes in a variety of models with multiple options and accessories. Our new buying guide gives you a quick breakdown of the different models at a glance. Rampart can help you source the right helmet for your agency.

NEW TOOLS for NEW CHALLENGES

NIGHT VISION FOR PUBLIC ORDER

Night vision is not often thought of as an important tool for public order teams, but new use cases have formed after the emergence of occupational style protests in the winter of 2022. Many lessons were learned in both equipment and policy requirements for dealing with this new type of protest. Large encampment style protests present new and particular challenges; where nighttime darkness can limit the ability for law enforcement to maintain effective overwatch, ensure public safety and scan for threats. When evaluating NVD’s, Rampart recommends products from Night Vision Devices. Night Vision Devices is a U.S. Veteran Owned Business and provides high quality, US manufactured night vision binoculars, monoculars, night vision parts and service. The specific product to highlight in the context of public order is the PVS-14. The PVS-14 is the all-around best multi-functional night vision monocular available. Head or helmet mounted, the PVS-14 allows the user to retain their night adapted vision in one eye while viewing their surroundings through the illuminated eyepiece of the PVS-14. The monocular form-factor and single eye use also provides better situational awareness for the user if they are scanning large areas of activity. The new battery housing completes the perfect package by allowing the user to power off the unit when in an upright position and power on when flipped down.

"Large encampment style protests present new and particular challenges; where nighttime darkness can limit the ability for law enforcement to maintain effective overwatch, ensure public safety and scan for threats. "

The bottom line is that visibility at night is no longer a specialty requirement. NVD’s not only help in identifying threats and tracking movements behind the front lines of a riot or protest, they provide a critical command and control tool. If a team of police users have to enter the crowd, either to render aid to someone, or to remove a serious threat, having overwatch capabilities after dark can be a critical factor in keeping officers safe and effective.

NIGHT VISION DEVICES PVS-14

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Communication, command and control systems

With law enforcement developing more advanced tactics and strategies for dealing with large groups of riots or protesters comes the need for improved communication systems. Riots or violent protests can take place in multiple locations, which presents difficulties for command and control when trying to maintain total situational awareness. Riots at the size and scale seen in recent years introduce additional complexities for command and control teams. The deployment of large groups of re-enforcements and the coordination of multiple teams in an area of operation that can span many city blocks presents a new and complex logistical challenge. Communication systems like GoTenna Pro have been developed to provide real-time information to incident commanders so that they can make informed, data supported decisions and increase teamwide situational awareness. GoTenna’s mobile mesh networking platform provides individual police user location tracking, map marking, and text-based messaging when paired to goTenna devices. Connect us today to learn more about GoTenna Pro or to see a video demonstration about how this new system works.

GOTENNA PRO

"The deployment of large groups of re-enforcements and the coordination of multiple teams in an area of operation that can span many city blocks presents a new and complex logistical challenge."

Training is a critical piece of riot management, but success requires the proper training to be paired with the proper equipment. At Rampart, we are proud to be partnered with companies that are on the cutting edge of officer protection for the modern landscape of public order. Contact us today to discuss your requirements and learn more about our complete line of public order equipment.

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CONTACT RAMPART TODAY FOR MORE INFORMATION ON PUBLIC ORDER GEAR.

WE CAN MEET EVEN THE MOST CHALLENGING MISSION REQUIREMENTS. BRING US YOURS.

FEATURED PRODUCTS

XION

PG1 - TOP

XION

PG1 - BOTTOM

XION

PG 2 - TOP

SCHUBERTH

P100n

SCHUBERTH

P100N HMK

NVD

PVS-14

NVD

BNVD

GOTENNA

PRO

REFERENCES

1 – https://www.visionofhumanity.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/GPI-2021-web-1.pdf