HEIGHT, WEIGHT and age restrictions are to be eliminated from the recruitment policy of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).
This as the Implementation and Oversight Committee - the entity mandated to monitor and evaluate the JCF's change process and communicate the progress to the minister of national security and the public in transparent ways, has recommended significant changes. The policy recommendations were disclosed by Assistant Commissioner of Police Clifford Blake in a presentation at the committee's meeting recently.
Foremost among the proposed changes is a recommendation for height, weight and age restrictions on recruitment to be eliminated and replaced by an appropriate and bona fide physical ability test.
It was also recommended that arrangements for the security vetting of recruits be reviewed and upgraded in line with the upgrading of security vetting across the Jamaica Constabulary Force.
The third recommendation indicated that there should be an increased emphasis placed on the integrity, values and conscientiousness of potential recruits. To this end, it was recommended that the JCF should explore the employment of a reliable and valid conscientiousness testing instrument.
Another major change is that the interview aspect of the recruitment process is now allocated fewer points than the written aspect.
By extension, the committee also proposed that recommendation 74, which deals with height and weight requirements, be adjusted to indicate that while the JCF has basic height and weight requirements, discretionary waivers are an option.
According to a release from the Ministry of National Security, by rewording this requirement, prospective applicants who do not meet the basic height and weight requirements may still be accepted, based on their specific skills areas.
Meanwhile, in continuing its thrust to restructure the JCF's operations, the civilianisation process has been ongoing.
That was the word from the JCF's Director of Corporate Services Angela Patterson at a recent sitting of the Implementation Oversight Committee.
Working in phases and with creativity, a wide cross section of posts, once held by police personnel, has now been filled by civilians or district constables, ensuring that more police officers are able to meet daily police-specific demands.
With mobility of the force being a major priority, the JCF is also seeking innovative ways to address its transportation needs. To this end, the corporate services division is working on a long-term solution to acquire and manage the force's transportation needs.
An accompanying cost analysis will be done to support the policy being drafted. Together, these documents will guide the acquisition and management process.