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Feb 3, 2020

Retired B.D.F. Captain Calls for H.R.C.B. to Investigate Abuse Allegations

Derricia Castillo

Castillo says that she believes it has never been the B.D.F.’s priority to address the issue, but she calls on other women who have experienced the abuse to come forward and speak out.  She says that while she is happy to see that, for the first time, a thorough investigation has been commissioned, she believes that there is still a need for an independent team to look at those reports of abuses.

 

Derricia Castillo, Retired Captain, B.D.F.

“I don’t think it has ever been a priority in the B.D.F. to address these allegations. I have seen where generals have come in try to address fraternizing and try to address small little issues, as opposed to the fact that there is an act that is out there protecting us as people out here, so why not create that environment within the B.D.F.  For me, I think it is very important that it has to be done gender neutral because while I am speaking on my experience, there are some men who experience it from women of higher rank and higher seniority. So, I don’t think it has ever been a priority because from the level of men and women’s perspective there is a level of advantage it gives to them.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“So, hearing these recent allegations, it wasn’t surprising?”

 

Derricia Castillo

“None at all. Because it has been so constant and we sit there and hear it and it just falls apart. The most that has ever happened for these allegations has been demotions or transfers and these for criminal matters and that is the most that has happened. It is unfortunate because it is hidden in the B.D.F. and rather than creating a system that fixes it, we send these people back out into the world. We send them back to their families. We send them around children and we send them out to contaminate the wider population as oppose to addressing it the right way.   There needs to be a change. I have grown up with the military. I have always said that the B.D.F. day is my birthday because the festivity is right around my birthday. So, I have the B.D.F. at heart and I want to see the B.D.F. better. I know the opportunity has given to me and I want that opportunity to exist for other women. So, there needs to be something in place to fix the system that is broken.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“How do you think the independent investigation can help in that regard?”

 

Derricia Castillo

“It would help. While I can appreciate the team that has been put together, for the first time in sexual offence cases they have actually put together a police team to look into these issues. However, there needs to be an independent team because it is pretty much big brother looking at what little brother is doing so there is always the possibility of “ok, nuh worry about that. We nuh wah tell daddy or mommy weh the happen.” I am not saying it is going to happen, but there is the possibility of it happening. But also there needs to be something outside of just the criminal investigation. There needs to be the human rights portion of it to look at what exists and how B.D.F. can adopt it.”

 

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