I don’t want people to think that I have something against the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS). I know I have been critical of some of their initiatives in the past, like the crowd control horses for example, but I fully support the effort the TTPS is making to appear like they’re trying to fight crime. Ok, let me rephrase that, I am 100% behind the public relations blitz being conducted by the TTPS and in particular the Commissioner. You know what, let me just get to my point.

It has been reported that the Gender Based Violence Unit (GBVU) of the TTPS is testing an electronic bracelet monitoring system for keeping tabs on persons that have protection (restraining) orders against them. This is an excellent idea, in principle. Domestic violence is a serious issue and I applaud any effort to keep victims safe. However, the red woman is in the details.

My understanding is that electronic monitoring bracelets are usually placed on offenders who need to be restricted to or from particular locations. So if you’re under house arrest in Diego Martin and your bracelet shows you’re in Classic Seamen Guest House, Restaurant & Bar in Marabella you would be in some problems not only with your woman but the cops as well. These bracelets are also used for accused offenders who are considered flight risks and need to be prevented from fleeing the jurisdiction. Therefore, if you’re facing trial for being the Penal goat fondler, you wouldn’t be able to flee to Talparo.

What both of those situations have in common is that the bracelet is calibrated in reference to a fixed location, whether it’s a house or a predetermined perimeter. Therefore, how is this monitoring system going to work if the protectee is going to be moving around the country living their life? Are they going to put a bracelet on them as well so that they know who is where?

The TTPS says that once a protection order is breached they respond immediately, which in our traffic could mean at least 20 mins. What we need is a system where the perpetrator is stopped as soon as they breach the order because by the time the police get there it might be too late. My suggestion is to give the victims non-lethal means to protect themselves like scorpion-pepper spray or a Taser. Better yet, maybe the bracelet could deliver a shock that would make the offender immediately release their bowels like they had a cold roti, warm seamoss and broclax.

I’m not trying to pappyshow this serious issue. I’m genuinely trying to understand how this is going to work and offer suggestions to make it better. Maybe one of you out there has a uncle, brother-in-law or outside man/woman that is a police and knows. Let me know. I’m genuinely curious.

TANA

PS: Just to be clear, I deliberately “borrowed” this pic from the Newsday. All credit to them.

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