MANILA, Philippines – Policemen in the Philippines are bent on reinventing their image– from bumbling cops to respected public servants.
How will they do it? It starts with a fashion show.
Natashya Gutierrez reports.
Cops on the catwalk.
The Philippine National Police ditches its guns for a night and takes on the ramp in an event aptly called Copwalk.
The fashion show features prospective new uniform designs for the PNP.
So who better to model them than policemen and women?
DIRECTORATE FOR PLANS
The PNP leadership initiated the catwalk so we could offer the police officers a more comfortable set of uniforms that will be of great help to them whatever conditions they may be.
The PNP has had the same uniform for 17 years.
Complaints from the police triggered the shift.
They say the present uniform is too hot and uncomfortable.
A NAPOLCOM resolution allows the PNP to change their uniform every 10 years.
So Directorate for Research and Development head Gil Hitosis started doing research on the best material and design to use by consulting fashion designers.
PNP Chief Alan Purisima supported the idea to change the uniform and the idea of a fashion show.
DIRECTORATE FOR RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
Ang ating mga tauhan sa field ay nagcocomplain narin na yung dati nating uniform na 100% polyester masaydong mainit, kung pinawisan ka makati, it does not afford them comfort. (Our policemen have complained that the old uniform, the 100% polyester, is too hot. If you sweat its itchy, it does not afford them comfort.)
Copwalk showcases 10 different designs.
The event even asks audience members to text their design choice.
Top fashion designers Rene Salud, Eddie Badeo and former politician TingTing Cojuangco also help choose the winner.
In the end, designer Jacky Claire Ponte wins, but The Uniform and Equipment Standardized Board will approve the final design.
The uniform is part of a sweeping overhaul of the police force under the Aquino administration.
Along with modern equipment and new guns, policemen will now enjoy a comfortable new uniform…
and hopefully find renewed pride and dignity in protecting the public.
Natashya Gutierrez, Rappler, Manila.