Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security, Osmond Petty (seated, third from left) with members of Course 43 with instructors and police officials.

BASSETERRE, St. Kitts –- Thirty-four individuals aspiring to become Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force (RSCNPF) officers began taking five-and-a-half month Training School courses on Jan. 28.

Commandant of the Police Training School, Inspector Eldrin Dickenson, welcomed 31 males and three females as members of Course 43. Dickenson said the class includes students from St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Santo Domingo, Grenada and Jamaica.

Police and civilian instructors will transform the recruits into disciplined and dedicated police officers committed to make a difference in the community.

“During training, legitimacy must be the cornerstone,” Dickenson explained. “We must play by the laws of the land in order to get true results in the court. “We must be steadfast in our efforts to produce physical, well-trained officers.

Recruits will be assessed on physical training, self defence, written assessments of criminal law, evidence and procedure, general duties, weapons training and community policing.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security, Osmond Petty, expressed pleasure that community policing is part of the training classes.

“When you leave here in five and a half months, you must begin to demonstrate good policing. And good policing today is a police officer who can blend traditional with community-oriented approaches,” said Petty.

He cited a simple example, stressing the value of engaging with the public.

“You can’t pass people on the road with your face pushed up [and] don’t say good morning and then go back and ask them if they see anything because they are not going to answer you. You just passed [them] there,” said Petty.

The permanent secretary wished the recruits well and told them, “we need you on the streets.”