The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), has issued Force Orders, blocking its members from communicating directly with the Police Service Commission, PSC.
The High Command of the JCF says under no circumstances, must members of the Force communicate directly with the PSC, save and except, when directed or instructed by the Police Commissioner.
The latest Force Orders issued last Thursday say any breach of this directive is likely to result in disciplinary action with a view to dismissal.
The directive in the Force Orders dated last Thursday, September 7, says there must be strict compliance.
It says that communication by members of the JCF with the Police Service Commission must be done through the Office of the Police Commissioner.
This comes as the JCF is being bedeviled by a range of internal issues.
The lack of promotions, concerns over salary and general well-being of police personnel, sexual harrassment and victimization in the Force are a few of those issues.
And some rank and file members have been speaking out publicly.
But the Force Orders also reveal that members of the JCF are also taking some of these issues directly to the Police Service Commission, causing the High Command to issue its directive for them to cease doing so.
And that directive is being resisted.
The Force Orders say it’s been noticed, that in recent times, some members have been making what’s described as “inappropriate visits and telephone enquiries” at the PSC.
The Force Orders say these visits and enquiries are issues of acting appointments, recommendations, welfare related and other things affecting them.
This afternoon, the Head of the JCF’s Corporate Communications, Superintendent Stephanie Lindsay, declined to comment on the latest Force Orders, saying it’s a ‘confidential internal document’.
It’s unclear why Superintendent Lindsay says the Force Orders are ‘confidential internal’ documents.
Under the leadership of the two previous Police Commissioners — Dr. Carl Williams and Owen Ellington — Force Orders were routinely sent to the media on a weekly basis.
An excerpt of the Force Orders with the directive in question was brought to our attention today by someone purporting to be a member of the JCF.
The person — who wished to remain anonymous — says the latest Force Orders are an attempt to “muzzle” members of the Force.
The new orders were published the day before Police Commissioner, George Quallo, ordered an immediate review of the constabulary’s grievance procedures.
This, following allegations that rank and file members of the Force are being denied promotions because they reject sexual advances of their superiors.
Commissioner Quallo said he met members of the High command to discuss the claims last Friday.
The probe is to determine whether the grievance procedures dealing with reports of unfair treatment within the JCF are working.