#Providenciales, July 20, 2018 – Turks and Caicos – His Excellency the Governor, Dr John Freeman, and the Hon. Premier, Mrs Sharlene Cartwright Robinson, co-chaired a meeting of the TCI National Security Council (NSC) on Monday, 16 July 2018, at the Hon. Hilly Ewing Building in Providenciales.
In attendance as members of the NSC were Her Excellency the Deputy Governor and the Commissioner of Police. The Hon. Minister of Home Affairs, Transportation and Communication attended the meeting to cover matters concerning his Ministry. The new Superintendent of HM Prison also attended the meeting to brief the NSC on his first impressions of HM Prison since taking up his appointment in May. The Hon. Attorney-General joined the meeting by teleconference.
At this meeting the NSC:
- Received up-dates from the Commissioner of Police on:
– The latest crime statistics for the period April-June 2018 which showed that overall crime figures for the first quarter of the year were at broadly the same levels as the same period in 2017;
– Major projects coming on stream including a new 911 system which would be operated from a new 911 Centre as well as the digitisation of police radios on Providenciales to provide better communication coverage. The RTCIPF plan to roll out digitisation more widely to improve communication across the other islands;
– New equipment being deployed by RTCIPF officers and the armed response and tactical teams;
– The introduction of breathalyser testing in TCI from 1 July 2018 including initial findings and results;
– A new child safeguarding facility which would be shared with the Departments for Social Development and Education to improve cross-government efforts to protect children. The Commissioner also reported on the work that the RTCIPF had done on child safeguarding with the National Crime Agency from the UK and on a bid for additional funding from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF);
– Co-operation between the RTCIPF and the Miami Beach Police including on training, equipment supplies and DNA profiling;
– Plans to address a recent spike in the number of reported gun crimes including improved investigative techniques by the RTCIPF and working with Crime Stoppers and the public to report information on illegal weapons. The Hon. Premier called for a new approach to working with youth to get guns off the streets.
- Received a report from the Superintendent of HM Prison on his initial impressions of conditions at the prison since taking up his appointment in May. The Superintendent outlined the myriad challenges facing the prison. The Hon. Minister for Home Affairs reported that he had recently visited the prison and that his Ministry would be addressing the problems including working with the private sector to introduce measures to support the work of the prison staff and improve security. His Excellency the Governor expressed his thanks to all those working at the prison in difficult circumstances.
- The Hon. Premier reported that the TCI Government would commence talks soon with the Government of the Bahamas on possible co-operation to tackle the problem of illegal sloops from Haiti. The Hon. Premier also reported that she had received the report of the UK Border Force delegation who had been in TCI recently to carry out an assessment of TCI’s needs to combat illegal migration. The recommendations in the report were currently under consideration but were broadly in line with existing TCIG’s thinking and several were already being implemented.
- Received an up-date from the Hon. Premier on the political situation and unrest in Haiti which the Hon. Deputy Premier was monitoring and assessing the possible implications for TCI.
- Was informed by Her Excellency the Deputy Governor of reports of incidents of illegal poaching in Bahamian waters and on the implications of similar activity occurring in TCI and the need for a cross-government response to deal with illegal poaching.