Oral Replies to Parliamentary Questions

Oral Reply to PQ on Incidents in the Past Two Years of Uniformed Police Being Challenged by a Disorderly Member of the Public, by Mr Desmond Tan, Minister of State, Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment

Published: 03 August 2021


Miss Cheng Li Hui: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs (a) how many incidents have there been in the past two years of uniformed police being challenged by a disorderly member of the public; (b) in how many of these cases was additional back-up deployed; and (c) how does the Ministry ensure police personnel are physically and mentally prepared to handle face-to-face conflicts.


1.   Between 2019 and 2020, there were more than 400 reported cases of Police officers who faced verbal abuse or physical hurt while carrying out their duties. These include incidents where officers were challenged by disorderly members of the public.

2.   We do not track the number of cases where back-up officers were deployed. Depending on the situation, additional resources may be despatched to reinforce the on-scene officers to arrest the criminals, maintain peace and protect lives.

3.   Police officers are trained in a range of techniques to handle dynamic and unpredictable threats that they may encounter, including face-to-face conflicts.  These include the use of verbal command, unarmed tactics, batons, tasers, and firearms. The Police officers will evaluate the threat posed and take an appropriate course of action against the aggressor, taking into account public safety and their own safety, and the aggressor’s safety as well.