MONTEGO BAY — Minister of State for National Security, Dr. St. Aubyn Bartlett, has commended the new recruits of the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) for successfully completing their course of training, noting that they have now become members of a professional body, which has the task of keeping Jamaica safe.
He was addressing the thanksgiving and valedictory service for the 144 recruits of the 70th Intake held on Tuesday, July 26, at the Salem Baptist Church in Runaway Bay, St. Ann.
[more photos here]
"The Ministry of National Security is very pleased with the progress that you have made as recruits and is satisfied with your accomplishments. We are pleased that you have chosen to become part of a professional body of officers, who serve in a very sensitive capacity, to protect incarcerated youths, facilitate their rehabilitation and ensure their security," he stated.
He implored them to "hold fast" to the skills and methods taught during training, especially how to manage young people who are incarcerated, including those that may become disruptive.
"Remember that applying what you learn on a day to day basis will not only help to build you as a professional, but will also protect you in situations that require mastery of skills and quick thinking. Remember at all times, even when times are challenging, that this is not just a job, it's an honourable vocation, an important part of keeping Jamaica safe and a worthwhile life investment," Dr. Bartlett stated.
He called on all correctional officers to recognise that they are not just representing the DCS, but the entire cadre of law enforcement officers and so they have the responsibility of maintaining security at all times.
Dr. Bartlett also urged them to treat inmates with care, respect and "the dignity that every human being deserves. This is a central part of your commitment. It will earn the trust and respect of your teammates as well as that of the people you serve."
The 70th Intake of recruits completed a rigorous 22-week training programme at the Carl Rattray Staff College in Runaway Bay, St. Ann, and on Friday, July 29, they will be recognised as qualified and fully trained correctional officers at a passing out ceremony to be held at the venue.
By Glenis Rose
JIS REGIONAL OFFICE