Prime Minister Harris extols effectiveness of community policing activities

BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, January 13, 2020 (PLP PR Media Inc.) — Prime Minister and Minister of National Security, Dr the Hon Timothy Harris, is commending the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force for reaching out to the public through community policing activities that have helped foster good working relationships between the police and the people they serve.

“Tonight we witnessed another successful activity put on by the Tabernacle Police, and I want to commend Sergeant Simeon Liburd for this effort at outreaching to the community,” said Prime Minister Harris on Saturday January 11 at the annual Christmas/New Year Community Party held at the Tabernacle Police Station.

According to the Prime Minister, who is also the Area Parliamentary Representative, there was a very good turnout from the district covered by the Tabernacle Police, which stretches from Lodge Village to Bellevue. Persons from the very young, their parents and adults, came out in large numbers representing a broad-section of the community served by the Tabernacle Police.

The party which had started at 3:00 pm was in two sections, with the children’s party running up to 7:00 pm. The hundreds of children present took part in a number activities including bouncing castles, tarpaulin and were entertained by masquerades, while boys played football before they were presented with individual gifts by Prime Minister Harris. There was food for all present.

“The adults, each time they come they really do have a good time and it is a good event to have the community mingling, being better acquainted with the police officers and knowing that we are part of the same community, that the police needs them as much as they need the police to maintain the peace,” said Prime Minister Harris.

The Minister of National Security added: “By developing these strong bonds, we hope that it will be easier to get intelligence and information to assist the police to ensure that we keep crime low within the country and when crimes have been committed, they could count upon the community to provide information that would lead to the arrest of those who are the perpetrators.”

Adults had their share of the party from 7:00 pm, and this went on right into midnight, and among those present included Commissioner of Police Hilroy Brandy; Assistant Commissioners of Police, Andre Mitchell, and Adolph Adams; Superintendent Travis Rogers who is in charge of District B; Inspectors John Bergan and Jacqueline Browne; Director of Forensics Department, Mrs Latoya Lake-Marshall; and retired Commissioner of Police Austin Williams.

“So it is a good exercise that we continue and clearly the community looks forward to participating,” observed the Honourable Prime Minister. “They come, they spend a good time here and so we hope that this will continue and that the police officers, of course, will come to see members of the community as their partners in law enforcement, just as the members of the communities must see the police as their partners in maintaining the peace, and ensuring a calm within the country.”

One of the activities reserved for adults was a game of dominos which saw in the opening rounds Prime Minister Harris play opposite Commissioner of Police Brandy teaming up to play against retired Commissioner of Police Austin Williams and Mr Raul Dorsett. They were refereed by Sergeant Simeon Liburd who along with retired COP Williams are active domino players on Constituency Number Seven Domino League, but playing for different teams.

According to Sergeant Simeon Liburd, who is in charge of the Tabernacle Police Station, the annual Christmas/New Year Community Party is part of community policing, which the Police Force is pushing to allow for the integration between the police and the communities. These community policing events are part of a series of activities organised by the Force to foster stronger ties with the people they serve.

“These are ways in which we use to integrate with the community; get to have socialisation with the people, and in that way you get to build their confidence with the police and as time goes by you will be able to get them to talk to you and you likewise to talk to them,” said Mr Liburd. “Community policing is about integrating communities and getting people to understand that they are each other’s watchman, so to speak.”

Sergeant Liburd further noted: “Prime Minister Harris as usual was here as the Member of Parliament for the area, where he also helps with the distribution of the gifts to the children, The more we integrate the Prime Minister in what is happening here, I think it lends support for the public to want to give more support to the police.”

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