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IATF officers given first preference

By Nalinee Seelal Friday, August 29 2014

click on pic to zoom in
 Body cameras similar to those purchased by the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service mounted on the uniform of a police officer on patrol....
Body cameras similar to those purchased by the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service mounted on the uniform of a police officer on patrol....

The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service have kept good on its promise to purchase body One cameras which will be distributed to some selected officers of the Inter Agency Task Force (IATF) as early as mid-September. Newsday understands the 40 cameras arrived in the country a few weeks ago and officers from the IATF are to receive the necessary training on how these cameras actually work.

The decision by Acting Police Commissioner Stephen Williams to purchase 40 body cameras for police officers effective September 1, have met with strong approval from the Executive of the Police Social and Welfare Association.

Newsday also understands the cameras cost government TT$144,000 and additional cameras are to be purchased for other police officers from other units in the coming months.

Newsday understands the cameras will first be distributed to officers of the Inter Agency Task Force (IATF) and based on the feedback more cameras will be purchased and distributed throughout the police service.

Yesterday Secretary of the Police Social and Welfare Association, Actg Inspector Michael Seales told Newsday the purchase of these cameras is long overdue.

He said the time has arrived for police officers to be outfitted with these cameras which will prove useful to them in the execution of their duties.

“The Association has been the one lobbying for not only the body cameras but also the use of onboard cameras, for police officers.

The Association members attending the International Association of Chiefs of Police in Philadelphia last year had met with various suppliers of these types of cameras and had brought the use of the cameras to the attention of the Minister of National Security and Acting Commissioner of Police on their return to the country.

“We are happy that they are taking heed because the use of these cameras is integral to law enforcement and we have suggested that it gives the Acting Commissioner of Police the ability to now place one police officer per vehicle to do patrols as it is done in first world countries. Seales added “in that way the Actg Commissioner would get more patrol coverage and visibility and it will assist the public in having access to law enforcement officers at every point.”

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