On Monday January 30, 2022, a meeting was held by officers within the Central Division of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF), where the subjects of student loitering, disorderly conduct and unlawful fighting were discussed. All of the mentioned incidents have been occurring with increased frequency of late, and as such a determination was made to address these concerns with the relevant authorities.
It is unlawful to engage in all of the abovementioned activities, as they pose significant risks to not only students, but the public at large. There are remedies available including the utilization of the juvenile court systems, where monitoring and rehabilitative measures may be implemented to redirect delinquent behaviour.
A memo was prepared by the head of the Community Relations Branch (CRB) and sent to all principals of schools within the division articulating a like position. This document has since been retracted, as the true intent of the meeting was not correctly expressed and may have caused more panic and outrage than conveying the severity of the problem law enforcement is encountering, as a result of students’ non-adherence to law and order.
All schools are under the authority of the Ministry of Education and the RSLPF will endeavour to approach this matter with the relevant parties assigned to each district.
We wish to apologize for any undue concern this may have caused. Deputy Commissioner of Police (Ag), Ronald Phillip has since contacted officials within the Ministry of Education, including the Permanent Secretary, Michelle Charles, and Deputy Chief Education Officer, Giannetti George, and offered apologies on behalf of the organisation for the manner with which the intent was conveyed. Both organisations recognised that the concerns were of a serious nature, which posed challenges for both agencies and agreed to collaborate on preventative measures to address them.
Commissioner of Police Crusita Descartes-Pelius wishes to remind the public that citizen security is a major concern for the RSLPF and ensuring the safety of the youth is paramount. All measures to ensure their continued well-being will be initiated as we continue to create a safer environment for all.