JIS News

The police have been targeting the communities of, Newlands, Portmore Villas, March Pen, and Homestead in St Catherine, for safety and security programmes, since the launch of the Jamaica Constabulary Force Community- Based Policing (CBP) in June 2008.
CBP is a law enforcement philosophy and organisational strategy based on partnership between citizens and police to address the root causes of crime and disorder.
Speaking at a Community Safety and Security Stakeholders’ Forum held yesterday (Jan 13), at Cecil’s Restaurant in Spanish Town, St. Catherine, Corporal Jacqueline Dillon-Grant of the St Catherine South Division, said that several social interventions have taken place in the four communities.
The officers were instrumental in organising outreach programmes with the Registrar General’s Department (RGD) to assist with the registration of children in Portmore Villas.
“Based on our research a number of children there were not going to school and many of the excuses that were given was that they didn’t have birth certificates,” she said.
Additionally, Corporal Dillon-Grant said police officers have been working with church groups and other citizens within the community to find jobs for unemployed young men on the streets.
“One of our aims is to see how much we can assist them in getting jobs. Since the beginning of this year we have so far gotten jobs for two persons,” she said.
She said the police officers were also trying to re-vitalise youth clubs and to encourage young persons to join these clubs. She stated that a number of at risk youth have been incorporated into police youth clubs and Inter-School Brigades.
Corporal Dillon-Grant said that similar programmes have started in Newlands, Portmore. “In Newlands we have had some amount of success. We held a health fair last year and that is just one of the programmes, that we hope comes this year.”
Meanwhile in the March Pen community residents are participating in several skills training programmes. Twenty-five swimmers are being trained as lifeguards, while 60 are undergoing training in nail technology, cosmetology, video-graphics and food catering.
The programmes are jointly funded by the Citizens Security Initiative, the Jamaica Social Investment Fund, the HEART Trust/NTA, the Social Development Commission, and the St. Catherine North Police Division.

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