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Mar 28, 2018

What To Do About Crime?

Eamon Courtenay

Senators also touched significantly on the issue of crime during Tuesday’s budget debate, and the funding being put toward fighting it and keeping the streets safe. There was a cross-section of opinions from the P.U.P. to the social partners to the government. Whether the cause is poor parenting, lack of police funding or simply societal breakdown, the common cause is that we must all come together to fix it.

 

Eamon Courtenay, P.U.P. Senator

“Community police services and crime prevention: so now we’re talking of the monies to be made available, the resources to be made available for crime prevention. The revised estimates for 2017-2018: forty-eight point three million. What is being proposed for 2018-2019; forty-four point one-nine-two million, a reduction of just over three million, Mr. President. You see that, Mr. President? A reduction. But when we go down below and we see the staffing: 2017-2018, thirty-six managerial/executive; thirty-six for the upcoming fiscal year. Technical/frontline service, one thousand and ninety-three; for the fiscal year that is coming, that is going to increase to one thousand, five hundred and ninety-seven, nearly five hundred. But yet, personal emoluments goes from forty-eight million to forty-four million. Mr. President, I do not understand how that will be done.”

 

Osmany Salas

Osmany Salas, N.G.O. Senator

“If we turn to page ninety-two, under police strategic management and administration, of the three point two million dollars budgeted for this, ninety-five percent is for recurrent expenditure, of which fifty-seven percent goes to salaries. Only twenty-nine thousand dollars, a little bit more than that, less than one percent is assigned to training; less than thirty thousand dollars for this section. I am not surprised at this extremely low figure, because the Budget does not even include training for police of all ranks as it did last year and even then the budget was significantly lower. Our police obviously need constant professional training to enable them to be more effective in working in partnership with our communities.”

 

Henry Brown

Reverend Henry Brown, Churches Senator

“The bottom-line of this whole situation is how is it that we as a nation are going to combat the problems we face? Are we just going to continue to throw stones and say that’s the U.D.P., that’s the P.U.P.; or are we going to say, this is our problem, we must embrace it, we must take hold of the situation and see where we can help.”

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