Police, religious leaders exchange suggestions on crime situation Guyana Chronicle
June 15, 2002

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THE Police and the religious community have exchanged views and suggestions on how to cope with the current crime wave.

It happened when Acting Commissioner Floyd McDonald and other senior officers of the Force met Wednesday with representatives of the various religions at Police Headquarters, Eve Leary, Georgetown.

A Police release said the meeting was to inform those present on the current situation and enlist their assistance and support for the work of the force.

Present were those representing Moravian, Ethiopian Orthodox, Life Spring Ministries, Family Federation for World Peace, Brahma Kumaris Raja Yoga Centre, Infantry Ministry International, Central Islamic Organisation of Guyana (CIOG), Wesleyan, Church of God, Eccles Assembly of God, Salvation Army, Baha’i Faith, Roman Catholic and Assemblies of God churches.

The release said Mr McDonald took the opportunity to thank the church leaders for their prayers and support and appealed for a greater level of cooperation with the Police.

He noted that Guyanese are a deeply religious people as they are affiliated to at least one of the different organisations represented at the forum.

McDonald said no one could be insulated or isolated from the present situation because, whenever a crime is committed, all are affected in many ways, making it necessary for all to be involved in addressing the ills of society.

He updated the gathering on Police activities and highlighted ways in which the organisations can help, the release said.

According to the statement, McDonald urged the leaders to talk to their followers, so that good spiritual and moral values, a clear prerequisite for a good and prosperous society, could be upheld.

In response, they supported his call for the promotion of good values, from which would emerge the kinds of relationships necessary to improve socio-economic, cultural and other conditions.

The statement said they also suggested that:

the Force seeks to urgently improve its relations with local communities;

the Police begin an aggressive outreach programme, at the village,
regional and national levels, to solicit and enlist the assistance of critical stakeholders;

certain areas of the Force operation be highlighted and excesses
recognised and a comprehensive education programme be articulated and implemented in schools and other institutions of learning, to help youths and others understand their role in an effort to advance the country to a place of pride and glory.

The statement said it was agreed that all religious bodies be supportive of the Police Force in its effort to ensure the integrity of the society and allow Police ranks to visit places of worship and discuss with the membership how they, too, can assist.