Uniforms with a new look, durability and utility are on the way for Spokane Police patrol officers. An officer in a trial design patrolled the streets over the weekend and helped command staff get an idea of how the look will fare during police conduct. The style is expected to be phased in over the next two years.
Spokane City Council approved the $38,452.63 contract with Blumenthal Uniforms in June to create 70 new outfits for officers. The department saved money on the contract by reducing the amount of uniforms by half. Instead of four uniforms, each officer will have two medium weight outfits to cope with both the winter and summer seasons.
Officer Susan Mann has been wrangling the custom design for the past few months trying to reduce their costs. She calls the look a compromise between the need for professionalism and utility found in the jumpsuits. The last time they switched uniforms, it was in 2007 with the addition of jumpsuits costing the department about $185,000.
Priced at $489 each, the new jumpsuits will retain the black style and are expected to last about five years and decrease washing costs because of a thicker material to avoid wrinkles and resist precipitation.