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Aug 10, 2021

Police Officers Cannot Afford COVID Tests

A number of police officers contacted News Five today to say they had been sent home this morning. While they would not appear on camera, attorney Dickie Bradley says that up to now, the number of police officers who remain unvaccinated stands in the hundreds.  He says they have a valid concern about their inability to pay for the test and not wanting to be compelled to take the vaccine.


On the Phone: Dickie Bradley, Attorney for Belize Police Association

“They are unable to take the test. If the government offers to take the test for them, fine. If the government finds a way where they don’t have to pull out money that they do not have, I imagine lots of more officers will take the test. But the concern of the association which must now be our, the citizens’ concern is we cannot have large numbers of police officers being sent home because deh can’t afford the test. That is the concern and that is a valid concern.”


Marion Ali

“Another valid concern, however, is that the test cannot be continued to be paid by the public purse if the officers choose to not take the vaccine. It’s also the citizens who will have to be paying for their tests every time they are required to present that negative test result.”


On the Phone: Dickie Bradley

“Well, this is not an easy matter. There is never some simple, straightforward solution to some problems which are a little complicated and involves more than one thorny issue but this is what we’re faced with. police officers in large numbers are not able to pay for the test every two weeks. Deh can’t pay fi even the first one fi start. And if they don’t want to go the vaccination route you’re talking two tests every month. They cannot afford it. Are you going to punish them in a manner in which yoh di cut off yoh nose fi spite yoh face? We cannot send home large numbers of police officers. We’re going to ask for trouble.”


Marion Ali

“Ok. How far is this going if the response is not in the Association’s favour?”


On the Phone: Dickie Bradley

“Well, that is a matter for the association after canvassing their members.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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