JIS News

Minister of National Security, Dr. Peter Phillips, has informed that a Cabinet submission has now been prepared for the approval of the new role and conditions of work for District Constables.
The Minister who was speaking at an awards ceremony for District Constables held at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel yesterday (July 20) noted that the submission seeks approval for the modernization, transformation, and the functions of the District Constabulary.
“We are also seeking approval for the establishment of a Community Safety Officers Corp (CSO’s) to assist the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) and indeed all the security agencies in the fulfillment of the community safety mandate which is one of the paramount concerns of the entire Government,” Dr. Phillips said.
He noted that the modernization and transformation of the functions of the District Constabulary is best appreciated in the context of the thrust towards modernization of the country’s security machinery.
“The proposed core of community safety officers will be guided by the principles of volunteerism and civic responsibility and would focus on the implementation of crime prevention and community safety initiatives across the length and breath of Jamaica,” Dr. Phillips said.
In his contribution to the 2007/08 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives, the Minister had explained that CSOs will be responsible for conducting community audits; checking for environmental breaches; breaches of transportation rules; breaches of public order; collection of information on breaches of law and crimes in the community, and the patrolling of communities along with officers of the JCF.
He noted that with the creation of CSOs it is hoped that there will be the better management of crime, a reduction in anti-social behaviour, and some alleviation of the fear of crime.
“To carry out these functions effectively interpersonal relations will assume fundamental importance since by large CSOs will not just be another armed element of the security forces, in fact the vast majority will not be armed,” Dr. Phillips said.
In the meantime, nine District Constables who have served between 18 and 42 years were honoured at the luncheon.
“I want to use this opportunity to congratulate all members of the District Constabulary and particularly those who received awards today for outstanding service,” Dr. Phillips said.
Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Baldwin Burey, who brought greetings on behalf of Commissioner of Police, Lucius Thomas, said that it was commendable and fitting for the Ministry to honour the District Constables for their years of service to the nation.
“Even when the regulars would turn off the lights, it is the District Constables who are manning the jails and manning the guard rooms and making that difference in terms of providing quality service to members of the wider society,” ACP Burey said.

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