Over 200 persons applied to join the Guyana Police Force (GPF) during a recruitment drive held in Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne).
The COVID-19 pandemic had halted the recruitment and training of persons to join the Police Force, however, recruitment has once again commenced for persons wishing to become officers in the GPF.
The Police Force is initially seeking to recruit some 700 new officers and will be holding similar exercises in other regions across the country.
According to Deputy Commissioner Calvin Brutus, the current demand for human resources in the Police Force is large.
While he did not say what the quota is to bring the organisation to full capacity, Brutus noted, however, that they are looking to train 700 new ranks after which they will move to recruit more persons.
But in doing this, the Deputy Commissioner explained that efforts are being made to ensure that the Guyana Police Force truly reflects the Guyanese society. To this end, persons are being recruited from all geographic locations across Guyana.
Brutus said this will allow the Force to have persons from the different demographics of the country.
“A lot of our members are drawn from the coastland, particularly Berbice; some from Linden and Central Georgetown. Not because they are the ones that are most keen to join the Force, but because access for them is easier than those from the far-flung areas.”
Information on recruitment is also more readily available to persons on the coast while there is also a much higher cost for applicants who are not on the Coast.
However, according to Brutus, all of those discrepancies or disadvantages for persons from hinterland regions will be changed, allowing all equal opportunities.
Brutus said the Force has now made it much easier for persons who wish to become Police officers by reducing most of the miscellaneous costs attached to the application process.
“Once you would have gone through the process and you are ready to be sworn into the Guyana Police Force, a list in the past was given to recruits to purchase their civilian clothing, dress shirts, ties, dress pants, shoes, socks and other things like soap and toothpaste and so on. It is a challenge for many persons because remember that they don’t have a job; they would have to borrow money and some of their families and friends would not have that amount of money to lend them so the support for them was not readily available.”
This, Brutus pointed out, has in the past resulted in many recruits not entering training school.
“A lot of persons abandon the process because they could not stand it financially. Now the organisation has taken a decision at the Commissioner level that the Force will bear that cost and that will remove that burden from them.”
Additionally, if needed, the Force will take the photographs of applicants and print the pictures of those who do not walk with photographs. Brutus noted that the photocopying of all certificates is now being financed by the Force.
“We have even applied for birth certificates for persons who were never issued with a birth certificate and we have had to apply for a replacement for a lost birth certificate,” Brutus told the media as he explained the extent to which the Force was assisting applicants.
The Force is also footing the bill for the required medical and went to the extent while in Berbice to provide transportation for persons to go to have their medical examinations done.
“Your role is to come in and assimilate all that you can learn from the manuals that we present – learn policing and then you will go out to perform your duty.”
Similar drives will be held in Regions Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni), Eight (Potaro-Siparuni) Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo) and One (Barima-Waini) within the next few weeks.