Children are being used to spot speeding motorists and go on night-time patrols.
The ‘Mini Police’ project for those aged nine to 11 was started by Durham Constabulary and is now being taken up across the country. It gives uniforms to pupils in ‘economically deprived areas’ and invites them to special events.
The idea, according to official documents, is that ‘vulnerable children’ will be given a ‘positive experience of policing’ and ‘get involved in the local community’.
But they can also ‘support subtle educational interventions to tackle Serious Organised Crime’ and ‘gun and gang crime’.
Units of the Mini Police often go out on ‘community speed watch’ duty, monitoring passing motorists on busy roads.