Sunday 13 October, 2019

Despite threats, prison officers show up for work

Despite high tensions and threats to resign, there was almost full attendance by prison officers in this country’s prisons.

This was confirmed by acting Commissioner of Prisons Dane Clarke.

Clarke, speaking to LoopTT, said that as far as he had been informed, there was no unusual absenteeism from duties.

The Prisons Commissioner said that he understood and empathised with his officers, as over the past two weeks they had suffered the deaths of two colleagues – Superintendent Wayne Jackson and PO1 Darren Francis – however, he implored them to hold strong, and keep the faith, noting that despite claims to the contrary, work was being done to protect officers.

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Clarke also took a moment to address allegations that prison officers were to blame for their own predicament.

“I will not sit by and say there are not any corrupt officers. That is not true. But the administration has been doing work to weed these men out for several months, if not years. And there have been successes, with officers being taken to court. So work is being done. But it is still challenging.

“But that said, most of the officers who were killed in recent times were not corrupt officers. They were officers who were doing their duty. They were victims of criminals who basically sanctioned them for doing their jobs. And so blaming the entire prison service for the acts of a few is tantamount to victim blaming. That is unacceptable,” Clarke said.

More on this as it becomes available.
 

 

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