The President of the Police Welfare Association (PWA), says members of the organization must be careful not to spread the wrong message.
Travis Chicot made the comments Monday night during the MBC television programme, Police Insight.
Chicot spoke after programme host, Sergeant Shervon Matthieu, showed an image that he said had been circulating on social media.
It depicts a united Saint Lucia Fire Service and a Royal Saint Lucia Police Force in disarray.
Travis Chicot said the image is not a true reflection of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force and is not one he believes persons should look at.
The PWA President asserted that he takes the criticism implied in the social media posting with a grain of salt.
“Are we divided? On certain issues we must be, because we don’t always agree on every issue – every action,” Chicot observed.
He explained that some PWA members refuse to come to association meetings.
“You have members who are in this organization – as matter of fact, never attended a welfare meeting and what happens is surprisingly, when we come to the most heated part of welfare business is when we go into the negotiations and members come and attempt to reinvent the wheel,” Chicot noted.
“Members come to meetings with things that were discussed 20 AGMs ago,” the PWA President declared.
“I see the picture -members may feel that fire service at this point in time has called for action and the police have remained quiet.”
The head of the Saint Lucia Fire Service Association, Shane Felix, was also a guest on Monday night’s programme.
“I don’t think people should take pride in sharing such a photo just because the Fire Service Association has gotten to the point of industrial action,” Felix stated.
“We too have our concerns, issues we don’t agree on as fire officers and just because it means that we have shown solidarity in terms of getting to where we are now, does not mean that we don’t have our own concerns and divisions and so on,” he told Police Insight.
“If anything at all I think the police officers should be using that (the image) to encourage- to get the necessary solidarity among themselves,” Felix asserted.
“It is not a good thing to go around inciting division in your own organization, more so at this point that we are trying to work together as police, fire officers and correctional officers,” he declared.
Felix urged a focus on ‘positive attributes’ rather than division and urged a halt to the sharing of the image.
Firefighters are currently on strike to press for redress in connection with ‘decades long’ outstanding issues.
At the same time, HTS Television reported Monday night that the Government Negotiating Team and the PWA have reached a settlement on their outstanding industrial relations matters.