Saint Lucia
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Female BCF Officer Bites Male Inmate In Self-Defence – St. Lucia Times

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A female Bordelais Correctional Facility (BCF) officer bit a male inmate in self-defence about three weeks ago.

The Correctional Services Welfare Association highlighted the incident in its continuing quest to have the government address members’ outstanding concerns, including getting communications equipment.

“Imagine an officer being faced with a situation where she could have simply pressed a panic button, but because of the unavailability of the radio the officer had to resort to biting an inmate, not knowing what health issues this inmate may have,” Public Relations Officer Yasmin Peter lamented.

Peter complained that there is no effective communication system at the BCF, and requests for a time frame for getting one have yet to receive a response.

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In addition, she disclosed that correctional officers are concerned over drones flying around the BCF.

Peter also mentioned the issue of mold in the twenty-year-old BCF building.

The PRO explained that only the administration block received mold testing and treatment, not the residential building where most correctional officers work.

The  association’s complaints included the need for vehicles and the overcrowding in a structure built to house 500, which has surpassed that.

“All we are asking for as correctional officers is to be treated with the same courtesy and respect as our sister agencies, the fire and the police,” Peter said.

She welcomed 25 recruits but called for adequate training.

And Peter said correctional officers are committed to performing their duties.

Her comments came after her association executive held its third meeting with members on Monday to discuss the response from the letter referenced to the Ministry of Home Affairs by the Prime Minister for urgent action.

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Peter disclosed that the association executive and the ninety-percent membership attending the meeting were dissatisfied.

“In our meeting with the Prime Minister in April, he indicated to us that all our issues would be addressed in a favourable way. The letter received on Sunday, 30th July, 2023 indicated otherwise,” Peter said.

She said the Ministry of Home Affairs rejected issues that Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre approved.

” Issues which form part of our collective agreement but have not been honored by the Employer have also been rejected by the Ministry,” Peter stated.

“Our membership has now asked that we seek dialogue on their behalf with the Prime Minister, the Minister of Home Affairs, and the Ministry of Public Service. The membership would like separate meetings with the three entities to seek clarification on the outstanding issues,” she said, adding that the Correctional Services Association had already prepared letters for dispatch.

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