The discussions in the Lethal Force thread got me thinking about a couple things.
Full disclosure: this will be part query for discussion, and part rant because it’s something I’m wrestling with at my company right now.
Should regular close-quarters combat/hand-to-hand/etc etc training be mandatory for those in LEO positions, the military, corrections, security, etc?
My standpoint? Yes. 100%. I’ll give some background from my perspective (incoming rant):
So I work in the security industry. Currently, loss prevention at the government liquor stores. The city I live in is not a fun place, and has for many, many years been rated as one of the top 3 most dangerous cities in all of Canada. We are regularly REQUIRED to arrest subjects, however it becomes a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” mentality. There’s been a steady increase in violent resistance to our attempts at product retrieval and arrests, to the point where I went through a window recently and received a nice little neck laceration (luckily I pulled the guy with me and got a lovely choke and armbar combo until the cops arrived), another guy smashed his forehead into a doorframe, and just yesterday one of our guys got in shit because he failed to arrest someone he stated was under arrest. I ALMOST got in shit for my situation, but they quickly backed off because I had a potentially serious injury and it was all over the news. My scuffle could have gone a lot worse, but I have many years of training and was able to hold my own, which is not something I can say for everyone I work with.
The company is now calling for another use of force training session, which I know is just a way for them to legally cover their asses, but I’ve taken the use of force class required for handcuffing, and it’s an absolute joke. The techniques they teach you are ridiculous. My supervisor and I are fighting with his bosses now to justify the fact that, if they want us to be regularly arresting and handling people, we need more than a 6 hour class. The team needs regular, or at least semi-regular, classes.
Which brings me back to the main point. If I, in the measly security industry, have to deal with this level of crap, shouldn’t those in more dangerous positions be required even more to be highly prepared? Why is this not the case? I get frustrated with the high demand placed on those in positions of dangerous service, who then get in shit when things don’t go according to the perceived plan.
I recognize that everyone doesn’t like hand-to-hand training, or weapons training, or tactical drills, but hey, I don’t like going through windows, but sometimes it’s just part of the job.