1.1 Ministry’s Policy Priorities
One of the Government’s priorities is the reduction of crime as a national imperative. It states that the most urgent priority is to make the nation safe and secure. Further, that the expected economic growth and job creation can only be achieved if there is drastic reduction in crime, and there is peace and order in the society.
The Government of Jamaica is mindful of the current reality regarding safety and security in the society, and its responsibility for securing Jamaica. Fulfilling this responsibility involves the engagement of a wide cross section of the economy and the society, and this will require an ‘all-of-Government’ approach, with the Ministry of National Security leading and coordinating, to efficiently achieve its mission for a safer and more prosperous Jamaica. Listed below are the major elements to be undertaken, if we are to secure Jamaica in a meaningful and sustainable way:
- Citizen Safety and Security − The reduction of the threat of crime and violence is a major part of the mandate of securing Jamaica;
- Public Order − This will control how persons operate and do business in the public domain, including new laws and regulations relating to safe, orderly activities. The establishment of entertainment zones and enhancing discipline and order in public transportation are but two examples.
- Corruption − Compromising established, legitimate structures and procedures for selfish benefit and gain that would not otherwise accrue is a threat to a secure Jamaica.
- Community Safety − Positive leadership and sound planning at the local level should occupy the space where alternative, illegitimate systems of governance currently thrive. These illegitimate systems are a clear and present danger to securing a safer Jamaica. A safer community = a safer parish = a safer Jamaica.
- Territorial Integrity – The security and control of our marine, air and land space for the benefit of all Jamaicans.
- Crisis Response and Resilience − The ability to survive a crisis of whatever nature or form and to have an ‘all-of-Government’ response. The establishment of a continuation-of-government protocol and a national risk management and recovery strategy.
- Education − A lack of basic literacy is one of the root causes of crime and violence as it is manifested in poor conflict resolution management, and untrainable and unemployable persons, which lead to the proliferation of gangs, criminality and lawlessness. Education, therefore, is a major foundation in having a secure Jamaica.
- Cyber security − The protection of personal, business and state information in cyberspace is a critical plank in building a secure Jamaica.
- Critical Infrastructure Protection − Ensuring that the country’s water and electricity supplies, hospitals, bridges, ports and critical government installations are safe and secure.
- Economic Security − Preserving the integrity of our financial system from the participation of criminal elements. Securing, protecting and the recovery of the productive sector of the country, should they be threatened or attacked.
The Five Pillars
The Pillars on which we will build crime prevention in Jamaica are as follows:
- Effective Policing − the effective policing pillar focuses on strengthening the rule of law and enhancing police legitimacy with the general public.
- Swift and Sure Justice Processes – involves close collaboration with the judicial system to ensure swift, sure and fair justice for all.
- Crime Prevention through Social Development − addresses many of the contributing risk factors to crime and violence deriving from these inequalities, through multidisciplinary partnerships.
- Situational Crime Prevention − undertakes measures to reduce opportunities for particular crime and violence problems through spatial interventions, such as crime prevention through environmental design (CPTED) methodology and urban renewal.
- Rehabilitation and Redemption − aims at improving community reintegration for offenders and facilitating greater awareness and access to support services for assimilation of the deported population.
The Ministry of National Security implements its strategies through its various Departments/Agencies and Programmes:
- Caribbean Regional Drug Law Enforcement Training Centre (REDTRAC)
- Citizen Security and Justice Programme
- Department of Correctional Services
- Firearm Licensing Authority
- Jamaica Constabulary Force
- Jamaica Defence Force
- Private Security Regulation Authority
- Police Civilian Oversight Authority
- Passport Immigration & Citizenship Agency
Divisions/Directorates, that are also critical to the process, are grouped hereunder:
- Policy: Crime Prevention & Community Safety; Protective Security; Research & Evaluation; Offender Management; Border Security & Control; International Relations; Organized Crime & Defence
- Corporate Services: Human Resource Management & Administration, Information Technology; Public Affairs & Communication; Human Resource Development/Training; Procurement; Facility & Property Management; Documentation & Information
- Internal Audit
- Planning & Finance
- Special Projects
- Witness Protection
- Strategic Evaluation Centre