Dean of Workforce Learning at the H Lavity Stoutt Community College (HLSCC) Bernadine Louis wants newly minted officers of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force to never negotiate with their integrity.
Louis was delivering the keynote address at the third police recruit training exercise and passing out parade at the HLSCC recently.
She said: “As you take on this new role of a peace officer, you are going to be challenged, you are going to be tempted, you are going to find yourself into very difficult situations in these increasingly difficult times for life is full of challenges.”
“But I always wish you to remember your duty to the people and this country in which you live and serve and never, ever compromise your integrity. For if you lose it, it will be difficult or even impossible to restore it,” Louis added.
Work with the RVIPF, public told
In the meantime, members of the public were also urged to work alongside the men and women of the RVIPF.
“There has been over the years a renewed focus on the concept of community policing, which includes building a long and successful career through productive relationships with the community. So I am asking the audience here today to spread the word that we must do our part to work with police and not against them,” she said.
Don’t be too familiar
While also delivering remarks at the ceremony, President of the HLSCC Judith Vanterpool called on the officers to avoid becoming ‘too friendly’ with members of the public.
“As civilians, we expect you not to be firm all the time [when] forcing the law on us … People expect officers to be friendly but guard against too much familiarity,” Vanterpool advised.
“Do not become so friendly that you cannot separate yourself — no setup for expected bias behaviour. Avoid the simple invitation towards bribery, towards a soft path to dishonesty, or any dark path. Be firm when you have to, do so professionally and be able to walk the street with a clean spirit,” she further said.