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Scots Language Centre Centre for the Scots Leid

Police cautioned for using Scots

19th June 2007

A new police radio system, known as Airwave, which is to be used across the United Kingdom, is to come into use for the first time in July 2007. The National Policing Improvement Agency has been advised that Scottish police should desist from the use of Scots words when on duty because these are not understood by police officers in other parts of the UK. For example, Scottish police officers will be forbidden from using terms such as 'jakeys', 'barney' or 'shoot the craw', and instead will be expected to speak English equivalents only when using walkie talkie radios. The NPIA expect that these new rules will result in "a nationwide standard phraseology and procedure."