So much police gear, so little time

Due to economic conditions over the past several years, most city, state and federal law enforcement departments and agencies have been forced to slash budgets and make cost effective decisions regarding their police gear instead of continuing and maintaining status quo. The abundance of products in police equipment supply is mind boggling and without a well informed team of individuals constantly researching the latest innovations and new products, it can be difficult to know what the best available options are. Many departments and agencies rely heavily on their suppliers who are distributors and dealers usually for hundreds of brands of police gear. This relationship is still extremely important today.

Some of the largest players in the police equipment supply field include Galls and Quartermaster, but often a department or agency can make better deals with smaller suppliers and as well as receive individual attention from top management. Some of the smaller dealers would include Police Equipment Depot out of Nashville, INTAPOL Industries out of Jersey City, and Blumenthal Uniforms out of the pacific northwest. In addition to the relationship with the dealer or distributor, It can also be important to even deal directly with a sales representative at various manufacturers themselves to have a funnel of information constantly flowing in. Most departments and agencies usually only have a select few or group of individuals to stay on top of the latest police gear offerings, as well as also include visits to industry conferences and trade shows like the International Association of Police Chiefs or the Shot Show but these larger industry shows only come around once a year. Because there are literally over 100,000 different products in the police gear industry, and and new innovative products are offered yearly, departments need to take the reigns to have a program in place to constantly inform and educate themselves. Some of the categories include police handcuffs, police knives, footwear, police badges, duty gear, batons, uniforms, firearms, pepper spray, tactical gear, body armor, eyewear and protective goggles, gloves, helmets, police cars and motorcycles, duty bags, k-9, and the list can go on and on. You can see it might be a challenge to stay on top of this many , thus making the relationships to the suppliers critical.

The top brands like Safariland, American Body Armor, Point Blank, Smith & Wesson, Smith & Warren, ASP, Wiley X, Defense Technology, Blauer, Fechheimer, Under Armour, Armor Express and many more give a departments or agencies the confidence to purchase with trust but it should also be noted that there are also several smaller manufacturers that might have more affordable options and should be seriously considered in these economic times. Some examples could include the INTAPOL law and order motorcycle gear, and the GH Armor Systems body armor line. Both are smaller companies but offer innovation, comfort and affordability. If your department or agency has had to slash it's budget for necessary gear, please take the time to research and work with your suppliers to find out the best possible options.