Sun | Sep 25, 2016

Editorial - Police image and the press

Published:Tuesday | March 23, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Assistant Commissioner of Police Novelett Grant has made heavy weather of the purported findings of a study claiming that media images of the constabulary distort reality, thereby weakening the ability of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) to effectively develop its community policing initiative.

We assume Ms Grant lives in Jamaica, has a full grasp of the realities of the society in which she resides, and is fully aware of both the facts and public perception of the organisation in which she serves. If she does, she will appreciate that most Jamaicans are conflicted about the JCF, believing that it is useful and necessary, but that it is rotten to the core, or near to being so.

Those perceptions are not media creations, but the fact of the 250 police homicides, of too many cases of the questionable application of the use-of-force policy, as well as the multiple shakedowns of citizens and other acts of corruption, including the alleged stealing of guns and ammunition from the armoury for sale to criminals, does more harm to the police's image than anything the media highlights.

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