have collars on

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I encountered a phrase I don't know while reading the transcript of a Ted.com video (Jeffrey Brown: How we cut youth violence in Boston by 79 percent | TED Talk Subtitles and Transcript | TED.com).

The story is about a preacher who reached out for youth on the street by talking to them and trying to understand what their real issues were in order to reduce violene in the communuty. The unfamiliar phrase was in the following passage.

...we would get together in one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the cityon a Friday night and on a Saturday nightat 10 p.m.,and we would walk until 2 or 3 in the morning. I imagine we were quite the anomaly when we first started walking. I mean, we weren't drug dealers.We weren't drug customers.We weren't the police. Some of us would have collars on.It was probably a really odd thing.But they started speaking to us after a while...

Could anyone explain what the phrase highlighted in blue means? Thank you in advance.
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