|Attorney General, Adriel Brathwaite (at podium), addressing Cariobbean Commissioners of Police. At left is Barbados’ Deputy Commissioner of Police, Bertie Hinds. (A. Gaskin/BGIS)??|
This island’s Attorney General, Adriel Brathwaite is concerned about the "roadblocks to the use of video recordings of interviews of suspects", and has called on regional Commissioners of Police to work towards making the appropriate recommendations to achieve this objective.
Speaking at the Opening Ceremony of a two-day Inter-sessional Meeting of the Association of Caribbean Commissioners of Police (ACCP), at Divi Southwinds Resort, the Minister noted that "in a 2008 public opinion survey in Barbados of 1,350 adults, 16 per cent thought that the police used excessive force," and he stressed this was another area that must be addressed as a means of removing the "constant claim of unlawfully obtained confessions."
Mr. Brathwaite told his audience that to his mind, illegal drugs remained the Caribbean’s "number one criminal issue."
He said: "We are all fully aware of the direct and indirect negative activities which flow from illegal drugs and the tremendous costs to our national budgets… as we continue to battle the scourge of drug trafficking, cross border trade in persons and illicit merchandise, robberies, murders and many more everyday crimes."
The Minister continued that today police forces regionally are "expected to do more with less [and], we must, therefore, now more than ever utilise strategies which are most effective and engage our strategic partners as much as possible to assist us in the execution of the same."
While acknowledging that our best strategic partners are the ordinary men and women whom we serve daily, the Attorney General pointed out that in many countries and in many areas we are seeing a decline in cooperation between law enforcement and the general population we serve.
Meanwhile, Acting Commissioner of Police, Bertie Hinds, who gave the opening remarks at the Inter-sessional meeting, said the agenda for the two-day seminar was one of community and organised crime.
Noting that this was a paradigm shift from the traditional policing that had been discussed over the years, the Acting Commissioner noted it "was absolutely necessary that [this] meeting really delves into these two areas which are fundamental for the survival of police organisations if they are going to provide a quality service that the various publics need and are calling for."??
The meeting concludes tomorrow, Wednesday, December 7.