Police Federation chairman Cecil McCalla has delivery a fiery, strident speech putting government on notice that it cannot be business as usual with the police force.
He was addressing the 75th Annual Joint Central Conference of the Jamaica Police Federation at Moon Palace Jamaica Grande Hotel, Ocho Rios today (Wednesday, May 16). The two-day conference is being held under the theme “Moving forward with resilience and transparency.”
Sgt McCalla said there were many persons, many of whom should know better, who seek to marginalize and belittle those who serve in the Force. Pointing to the appointment of a new Commissioner of Police and a new Minister of Security, who were both at the conference, Sgt McCalla said it was time not only for the changing of the guard but also in the attitude toward the JCF
Sgt McCalla challenged the members of the Federation to put Indecom out of business not by any nefarious action but by behaving professionally. He said there was not enough support for police officers injured or wounded in the line of duty.
From time to time in his speech the outgoing Federation Chairman called on the delegates to chorus “Hell No” to some situations or policies being faced.
He said the police force was not getting the resources required.
According to Mr McCalla “you canh run champagne organization on bag juice budget.”
The Police Federation chairman also said police will no longer tolerate working for more than 50 hours a week and not being paid. He said “While we go beyond the 50 hours there must be a system that captures the overtime and we must be compensated.”
To loud cheers, the chairman said: “No more, minister, our rank and file members will not work in excess of the hours prescribed by the ILO.”
He said “Slavery done. Slavery done and once you go beyond the 50 hours there must be an overtime between that capture your hours and you must be compensated.”
Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang, in his address, responded to the many points of the Police Federation chairman, saying some of them were issues he had already been discussing the administration and the Commissioner of Police. He promised frank and open dialogue with the Federation and representatives of the JCF.