THERE is a problem as far as female members of the Guardia Civil is concerned and that is that the 5,000 women (just 6 per cent of the 79,000 officers) can’t find official bullet proof vests that fit them snugly and safely.
An officer in Salamanca spent €500 on purchasing one for herself but as it was not standard regulation design, she is now up on a charge for wearing it after she had been told not to, even though it is ideal for her size and form.
It transpires that there are no bullet proof vests made especially for women in the force and one of their unions complains that it is discriminatory, dangerous and affects their ability to perform their job properly.
The problem is that generally speaking, men’s bullet proof vests are too large which makes them uncomfortable to wear, leaves areas unprotected and because of their size makes it difficult for women officers to easily reach their guns, batons and handcuffs.
A spokesperson for the Guardia Civil has confirmed that it has funds allocated to allow for the purchase of 21,000 new bullet proof vests over the next three years and that 2,000 will be for immediate issue to females, with an additional quantity being purchased to keep in store.
Even with this new purchase, there will only be 53,000 bullet proof vests available for the current 79,000 officers in service.