The first thing you may think when you hear the police logo is the iconic French “police” badge.
But this is not the badge that officers wear on their uniforms.
This is the one that’s worn by a group of French police officers in the southern town of Toulouse.
They’re known as the “cop squad” and they’re made up of officers from all across France.
“We are the first squad in the world to be made up entirely of French officers,” said Colonel Pierre-Alexis de Lecourt, the squad’s commander.
“This is a big step for the future of the French police.”
Police uniforms have become an increasingly common sight in recent years, with more than 30,000 officers wearing the uniform across the country in 2014.
They have also become a hot topic of debate, with some people questioning whether police uniforms should be compulsory for everyone in France.
“If you’re a cop, it’s a badge of honor, that’s why it’s always a good idea to wear it,” the squad leader, Colonel De Lecort, told French news channel BFMTV.
“But if you’re not a cop but you’re an employee, then it is a badge that belongs to you.”
But this isn’t the first time the police have worn uniforms with a badge attached.
A few years ago, when a man was found guilty of stabbing an elderly man, a policeman in his blue uniform, carrying a badge and carrying a gun, was forced to remove his badge and carry a baton instead.
“When he was questioned, he said, ‘It was my badge, it belonged to me’,” said Col De Lacourt.
When the man was sentenced to life in prison, the officer was left feeling embarrassed, he says.
“It’s a great shame for me because I thought it was a badge I could wear,” he said.
French police chief Pierre-Louis Bresson, who was elected in 2016, has spoken about how police uniforms are a symbol of police professionalism and the “first line of defence”.
“You wear a uniform because you’re doing your job, you know, that means you have to do it,” he told the French daily Le Monde in 2016.
In 2018, a number of police officers began wearing helmets.
The French military has also been using helmets in recent times.
The military recently announced that it would be the first country to introduce the helmet to the French army, in a move that has been hailed as a step forward for the country.
And the government has been considering banning police uniforms altogether for decades, with the latest proposals expected to be unveiled by the end of the year.