PRESS RELEASE – Twenty-three newly hired city police officers, were sworn in Monday at a special ceremony in the Office of the Mayor led by His Lordship, Mayor Peterson D. Francis.
The cohort includes 9 women and 14 men, among who are former police officers from the Royal St. Lucia Police Force.
The first batch of city cops will have an opportunity to serve and protect in the City of Castries. The recruits will hit the streets immediately and will participate in a three month training and appraisal program. They will also attend the training academy of the police service as part of an ongoing capacity building program.
Over the past years, many shared the view that the City Constabulary Officers, now rebranded to City Police, lost their spark as the numbers dwindled, resulting in a security lapse and lack of law enforcement in the city. The new recruits will be an addition to the 13 constabulary officers currently employed. Another batch of recruits are expected by the first quarter of 2017 to beef up the unit to 50.
We can’t make change alone, His Lordship Mayor Peterson D. Francis said.
“Citizens and visitors alike have for too long lamented the creeping sense of insecurity in the city of Castries. Criminals cannot continue to act with boldness and impunity. We have come a very long way, and indeed I am delighted that the City Police idea I spoke to on several occasions is bearing fruit. The city’s police force will be committed to building trust and will have a positive influence on the community.”
His Lordship charged the recruits with two tasks: Treat everyone with dignity and respect and become part of the community. His Lordship stated: “The department’s aim should be to strengthen relations within the city’s neighborhoods. Community policing should be the backbone of what we do. This recruitment drive speaks of our commitment, my commitment, to maintaining law and order and restoring a sense of safety in our city.”
Mayor Francis thanked the city council, police leadership, and national security and local government ministers for their efforts.
In closing, His Lordship also thanked the officers for their current and future sacrifices.