Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 22, 2020 (SKNIS): The Community Policing Team has been deployed across the country to ensure that children follow the guidelines established by the Ministry of Health in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, says Permanent Secretary in Ministry of National Security, Osmond Petty, during the April 21 National Emergency Operations Center (NEOC) COVID-19 Daily Briefing.
“With the extension of the State of Emergency, and more partial curfew days being provided, it has now become very imperative for the community policing team to get back into the community which they have done so,” said Mr. Petty.
Permanent Secretary Petty noted that when schools were closed in March, the Community Policing Team immediately went out into the community to ensure that the students did not congregate in any groups and practiced social and physical distancing.
Shortly after, a State of Emergency was declared, and the federation shut down. Mr. Petty stated that the Community Policing Team was otherwise engaged with other policing activities and was unable to follow through as the team would have liked to with respect to ensuring that children follow the prescribed guidelines.
He reported the Community Policing Team has again been enforcing the social and physical distancing guidelines and are encouraging children to stay at home.
Mr. Petty said that as more parents go out to work during partial curfew days, children will want to venture outside. Therefore, the Community Policing Team, as well as other general police, will be traversing the country to ensure that children to not congregate, and they stay at home.
The Ministry of National Security has over the last few years established 12 explorers’ clubs with about 1000 active children involved, said Mr. Petty.
He stated that the ministry has engaged Sun Island Clothes to provide 1000 masks for explorers’ children who do not have masks. The Community Policing Team will be charged with the distribution of the masks.
“Even though we do not want them to venture out, if they do venture out we want to ensure that they are secured,” said Mr. Petty. “Although children may or may not themselves be affected by COVID-19, the fact that they are out there and they go back into their homes with people in their homes who may be elderly, they may carry it back to them. So, the more we make sure that the children stay at home and off the streets, the safer it is for everybody in that household.”