Newest recruits into the police force warned not to forget the rules
Just before they took their oaths on June 27, the Commandant of the Police Training School warned the historic 78 recruits not to throw away their hard work by forgetting the rules.
Superintendent of Police (SOP) Benzil Samuel, of the Royal St Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force (RSVGPF) training school, spoke directly to the recruits at one point during his address.
He noted that they had successfully completed the transformation from civilians to police officers.
He reminded them that they had sacrificed a lot over the six month training period, and “survived the physical and mental training of police life.”
“You have worked hard,” he stated. He added, “Do not throw it all away by forgetting the rules.”
“From this point forward, until the day you retire, you will be in the public eye, subject to constant Monday morning hot topics, every action you take or do not take, will be subject to intense scrutiny,” he advised them.
He told them to remember that they are in a service profession, and that it is their duty to protect and serve.
“Never take action based on emotion,” Samuel said, telling the recruits that their actions will have lifelong consequences for the citizens they deal with.
“Never allow a victim to be victimized a second time due to poor police practices,” the SOP continued.
The Commandant was relaying these pleas to an historic set of recruits.
Commissioner of Police Colin John noted that 78 was the highest number of recruits that they had ever had at a Passing Out Parade.
The Commissioner told them that they were the fortunate few, because there had been over 5000 applications to join the police force.
Deputy Prime Minister Sir Louis Straker explained that the second reason that the parade was historic is because, “It is the first time that the recruits will be taking the oath on the parade square during the passing out parade.” He said that this is due to the Amendment of the Police Act in Parliament in November 2018.
With these new 78 seeds being planted in the RSVGPF, the fitting theme discussed at the parade by the feature speaker Pastor Dr Cecil Richards was “Sowing Seeds.”
Richards offered more advice to the recruits, noting that a preferred future cannot be envisioned unless there is a healthy dissatisfaction with what obtains.
“Notwithstanding the good work of the police force, there are the pockets of the un-ideal within our country, within our society that we ought to, rightfully, be dissatisfied with,” he contended.
The incidents of crime, and the levels of arrest are two areas where we don’t live in the ideal, according to the pastor.
“It seems that sometimes, with the rhetoric and the narrative that we hear today, that sometimes the police force is the us against the wider them,” he commented, and noted that this is also the un-ideal.
He told the recruits that they were the seeds, and asked them to maintain this way of thinking for the entirety of their careers.
“One seed, one recruit, one police who is determined to be an exemplar of discipline. One seed. One seed… one recruit who is determined to be a change agent,” he emphasized.
A number of recruits have already had a promising start to their careers, with 16 awards being bestowed at the end of their training.
Woman recruit constable(WRC), Ria Smart, was valedictorian and first in the course and copped six awards including the baton of honour, as reported in the Midweek edition of SEARCHLIGHT published online on July 2.
Recruit constable(RC) Erique Munroe placed second in the course, and received the Commandant Award. RC Silvanas McKenzie received four awards including the Chief Instructor’s Award.
RC Kenroy Campbell, WRC Onika Lewis, RC Wyon Cato, RC Shammah Jack and WRC Shavica Thomas also took awards.