The opposition Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) has released its 2021 election manifesto, promising that a labour administration will introduce several measures in the battle against crime, including the introduction of drones for use by the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) to monitor and detect illegal activity.
In this regard, the SLP manifesto indicated that a labour government will enact legislation to regularise the importation of drones.
According to the document, labour will also equip traffic police vehicles with digital vehicle registration databases to track suspicious vehicles and identify unlicensed and uninsured vehicles on public roads.
It said the Police Commissioner will be allowed greater operational independence over the management of the police force to increase its effectiveness in preventing and fighting crime, and law enforcers will be held more accountable to the public when the circumstances demand it.
The manifesto’s 11-point anti-crime plan also spoke to providing the necessary resources, in addition to equipment, for improved working conditions, and psychological and emotional support to the police.
It explained that in so doing, the police may be more effective in the execution of their duties.
The SLP plans to increase the installation of surveillance cameras in communities, and encourage a national service programme for students who have left school.
“This programme will include skills training and the payment of a stipend to participants,” the manifesto stated.
In the introduction to the manifesto, SLP leader, Philip J. Pierre, observed that the level of crime is now affecting the safety of citizens and negatively impacting the business environment, at a time when job opportunities are fewer.
“The politicisation of the police force by the UWP administration, as with so many aspects of government operations, has not helped this unenviable situation, and every effort will be made by a Labour Administration to provide more resources and operational independence to our Police force,” Pierre explained.
He also said that a labour administration would find ways of unclogging the justice system, so that justice can be dispensed more swiftly, especially as it relates to serious crimes.