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INDECOM calls for inclusion in vaccination priority

Published:Tuesday | March 16, 2021 | 4:52 PM
INDECOM Commissioner, Hugh Faulkner: "The proposal for the inclusion of our staff, as a matter of priority, will seek to ensure the efficient maintenance of this essential independent investigative system. The lack of inclusion was perhaps an oversight and an issue that we hope can be easily remedied.”

The Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) is calling for the Government to clarify and outline the COVID-19 vaccination schedule for its members.

INDECOM notes that it is mandated to provide independent oversight of the actions of the security forces, which includes a 24-hour scene response function and interviews of concerned officers.

It says while the Government, through the Ministry of Health, has outlined the vaccination plan for the Jamaica Constabulary Force, the Jamaica Defence Force, and the Department of Correctional Services, there has been no specificity of the inclusion of INDECOM in any named group.

“Any perceived health risk to the security forces would be applicable to INDECOM personnel who are duty bound to directly interact with members of law enforcement, in their professional capacity, and the wider public,” said INDECOM commissioner, Hugh Faulkner, in a statement today.

“The proposal for the inclusion of our staff, as a matter of priority, will seek to ensure the efficient maintenance of this essential independent investigative system. The lack of inclusion was perhaps an oversight and an issue that we hope can be easily remedied,” he continued.

Further, Faulkner said that he recognised and understood the necessity of prioritising the vaccination of persons over 60 years old, but says it is justifiable that due consideration be given and the explicit inclusion of INDECOM personnel.

He said the commission wrote to the health ministry, at the beginning of March, seeking guidance on the vaccination plan for INDECOM staff members, but has so far, not had any response.

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