Home Roland Rocchiccioli It is yet another case of bureaucracy gone made.

It is yet another case of bureaucracy gone made.


When I read the following, opening statement, I could not believe my eyes! ‘Victorian police officers have called for new pants after reporting their current uniforms are splitting at the crotch when they are trying to arrest people.’ I thought: This has to be some kind of silly joke! Regrettably, it wasn’t. It is yet another case of bureaucracy gone made.

Sometimes I think the lunatics are in charge of the asylum, and it is only going to get worse! How could this come to pass? The Police Association Victoria secretary, Wayne Gatt, said members had reported poor-quality and ill-fitting pants: “The material used in manufacturing the pants is particularly unpopular with members, who have advised that the material does not breathe, and that the pants cause excessive sweating, particularly in summer,” he said.

Mr Gatt said some officers had complained the excessive sweating had caused them medical problems. He said the trousers limited police movements when they were trying to make arrests.

He went on to say: “Our members tell us that the cut of the pants limit their movement when they are required to execute some of the defensive techniques they are trained to perform, and are particularly limiting when they are required to complete routine policing tasks, such as jumping fences.

Many have reported that the pants split at the crotch easily, and are particularly prone to do so when executing a common arrest technique.”Mr Gatt said he hoped the officers’ concerns were addressed as soon as possible.

Victoria Police said it was aware of problems with police-issued trousers in “a small number of cases” and in response the crotch seam had been strengthened: “The Victoria Police-issued uniform has undergone significant testing to ensure that it keeps employees safe,” a police spokeswoman said.”Therefore, all police are required to wear the full uniform unless they have obtained a specific exemption.” That sounds to me like a red herring.

We are not talking about whether or not they should be wearing the uniform, but whether or not it serves its purpose.

Clearly, it does not.

I wonder what is meant by “in a small number of cases”? It is too easy to talk in the abstract; to offer an explanation which is vague at best, and ambiguous at worst. What is the exact figure? If it be so insignificant, surely you would give the number to negate the argument of complainant? Any other reaction is dubious.

Victoria Police said there had not been any recent changes to the design of the pants, but a trial to update the women’s uniform size range was planned: “The comfort and safety of our employees is paramount and we are working closely with The Police Association Victoria to ensure this is not compromised.” After 50-years of working in the theatre, I think I know a little about the making of costumes and uniforms.

It is the role of the stage manager and stage director to work with designer, and to be certain the designs will work for the actor, satisfy the needs of the character, and the play.

Also, the finished articles have to survive the rigours of being worn for eight-performances a week, and sometimes for longruns of the production.

Occasionally it is quite complicated and difficult to achieve the required result. If I had a wardrobe master/mistress who made such a blunder with a costume, they would be out of a job.

I am flabbergasted that, in a land which almost has more sheep than people, the uniforms are not made from merino wool. It is the best in the world.

It breathes; it is fireproof; it wears well; is cool in the summer and warm in the winter; it is tough; and is kind to the skin.

The longer one lives, the more I am convinced the world is being overrun by incompetents; nincompoops who should be held accountable for their ludicrous decisions.nThat we are even talking about this problem is incomprehensible.

I am curious to know who made the decision on the unsuitable fabric being used, currently. There is one glaring problem to my solution. We no longer have woollen mills in this country.

We are so busy importing we have forgotten how to manufacture.

Every year the Italians come to Australia to buy-up the annual supply of superfine merino wool.

They take it away; spin it into the most glorious bolts of fabric, then sell it back to us at a huge profit.

Whatever happened to the lucky country? Roland can be heard each MONDAY morning on 3BA at 10.30.

Contact: rolandroc@bigpond.com