Police Commissioner Milton Desir has disclosed that he met with the Police Welfare Association (PWA)to discuss the way forward regarding the issue of COVID-19 vaccination.
“We need to prepare a vaccination policy for the force, and I believe that everybody has to be involved, and one of the key groups is the PWA executive ,” Desir explained.
According to the Police Commissioner, there’s an agreement for health teams to visit police officers at their stations to brief them about vaccines so they can make an informed decision.
“The force does not believe that mandatory vaccination is where we should go, but every person needs to be responsible and be vaccinated if they do not have issues,” Desir told St Lucia Times.
He said if people have concerns, the force expects them to seek advice from medical practitioners.
The PWA recently expressed concern over a COVID-19 vaccine requirement for officers applying for a basic Special Services Unit (SSU) Course.
The six-week paramilitary training begins on January 31, 2022, for ‘new and prospective entrants’ to the SSU.
Desir expressed that officers would need to be vaccinated to participate in certain activities organised by the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF).
He said the RSLPF was not punishing anyone.
Nevertheless, Desir reiterated his earlier comments that participants would be close together during the SSU training course and sleep in the same barracks.
“You would have persons who are vaccinated, and would they want an unvaccinated person to be next to them?” He asked.
“We are not discriminating against any individual, but it is what it is,” Desir observed.