Raise Your Voice Saint Lucia Inc has been reliably informed that the Ministry of Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment along with the Management of the Boys Training Centre (BTC) are in the process of terminating employment of the wardens/security officers at the facility in favour of a private security firm.
Security Personnel employed by the BTC are screened to ensure they are suitable individuals with the appropriate aptitude to work with juvenile offenders and male children who are sent to the facility for care and protection, further they are trained by international agencies such as USAID, UNICEF, etc. in child care and protection protocols.
Raise Your Voice Saint Lucia Inc opposes this direction by the Government of Saint Lucia as it endangers the wellbeing of state wards; private security firms will not invest in due diligence, background checks and training to ensure the safety and security of state wards that are already vulnerable, marginalized and at risk.
We therefore call on the Minister of Equity, Social Justice & Empowerment to put the welfare of both the juvenile offenders and those who are at the facility for care and protection first and foremost and terminate this dangerous decision to bring in private security at the Boys Training Centre.
We also call on the Government of Saint Lucia to carry out a through staff audit and investigation into allegations of abuses and why wards often run away from the Boys Training Centre. (Raise Your Voice Saint Lucia Inc)