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More Jamaicans now trusting the police - US study

Published:Friday | August 23, 2013 | 12:39 PM

Jovan Johnson, Gleaner Writer

A US study is claiming that more Jamaicans are trusting the police and are feeling more secure.

The study also revealed that citizens’ feel that cases of police personnel soliciting bribes have decreased.

The findings are contained in the 2012 AmericasBarometer Survey by Vanderbilt University’s Latin American Public Opinion Project (LAPOP).

The research team included Professor Anthony Harriott and Balford Lewis of the Mona Campus of the University of the West Indies.

According to the study, in 2012, Jamaicans scored an average of 28 points on the survey’s crime insecurity measure, which is 4 points lower than 2010 and 10 points lower than 2006.

The study also says cases of the police soliciting bribes have decreased over time just as there have been decreases in insecurity.

It noted that Jamaicans’ trust in the police increased notably between 2010 and 2012 owing to the police/military operation in West Kingston to capture confessed gangster, Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke.

The research suggests that other factors have fuelled positive attitudes towards the police in Jamaica, including trust in the courts and the judicial system.

The researchers concluded that police reform and related efforts in Jamaica have had significantly positive effects.

They say deepening the reforms in the police and judicial system in Jamaica would go a long way toward continuing to build bonds of trust between the community and the police, and, at the same time, help to decrease violence and increase citizen security.

Since the 1970s, LAPOP has been gathering data containing political perspectives from Latin America and the Caribbean.


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