I’m not speaking about the typical connotative bumpers we “jam on” for Carnival. We’re talking bumper to fender traffic piled up on our Nation’s highways, main roads, back roads, nooks and crannies; your granddaddies took to check your grannies. STANDSTILL TRAFFIC, everywhere.
It’s Monday 23rd March, 2015… and this is what our roadways look like
This “unplanned roadblock” began from as early as 5am exactly one week ago Monday morning, I remember waking up to finding out about endless traffic, statuses going on up Facebook one after the next about “Police checking everything” and “Traffic like mad” I had absolutely no intentions of leaving my house to be held up in traffic for menacing hours.
Children were unable to get to school, employers and employees alike were all unable to reach the workplaces, flights were cancelled, banks were unable to open, the PBR was at a standstill, the EMR jammed and let’s not speak about the Highways. .
The greatest however, were the images that were flooding social networks. Photos taken by the frustrated drivers held up in traffic of Police officers efficiently and meticulously doing their work by checking oil, spare tires etc. because we all know that in T&T the officers of TTPS are the most multi-talented and diverse. However, don’t mind my sarcasm. This was true; the image below is of a news report from CNC3
See didn’t I tell you they were checking every single thing?!
Let’s stray from this disaster that took place and focus on what the theme of this blog is about…. Stereotypes; this blog entry will delve into “Stereotypes attached to TTPS”
By no means are these MY PERSONAL VIEWS, the following are stereotypes I’ve heard over the past few years and the number of them that came up on my news feed during Monday’s roadblocks.
- Police doesn’t do anything and get paid
- Police corrupt
- Police like too much woman
- Police does take bribe
- Police wotless
- Police does wine on people for Carnival
- Police disrespectful
- Police like to abuse their power
- Police slow and unresponsive to crime
- Police afraid to go in bad man area
- The worst man you could be with is a Police man
- Police men are people who failed high school and getting paid more than people with degrees
- Police were people who used to get bullied when they were younger so now they take advantage of other people
I can bet my last dollar, that you’ve at least heard 3 of these stereotypes; if not then you’re clearly not from Trinidad & Tobago or you’re a Police (no offense). However, are there truths to any of these stereotypes? Comment and let me know.
Now being as objective as I can be with the issue on Monday, the Police are in fact right for protesting for their raise of pay since they have one of the lowest paid jobs in public service as well as having the highest risk. According to the Secretary of the Police and Social Welfare Association, Michael Seales said that members have been complaining that since 2011 there has been no progress in the negotiations with the Chief Personnel Officer (CPO). Seales said the basic salary of a junior police officer was TT$5,123 (One TT dollar =US$0.16 cents) and just about TT$1,000 more in benefits. However, the manner in which they protested by holding our island under ransom caused massive losses to productivity and finances, which set the state back millions of dollars just for that one day. So yes, the police were wrong in the way they protested but they aren’t wrong for wanting a raise in pay.
If you’re a UWI student like me you would remember the strike of the OWTU, the janitors did not clean bathrooms or empty garbage for more than 2 weeks. The stench was unbearable and there was litter everywhere, garbage cans were overflowing and flies and bees were beginning to circulate.
Everyone protests in some way or the other to get what they want, this has become a norm in T&T so don’t be mad at the Police for protesting, be mad at them for holding the state as ransom. Also, don’t lose faith in them they were doing their job after all and very efficiently might I add. At the end of the day the Police are the first people we contact during emergencies and mishaps (excluding the Ambulance) so let’s work together with them instead of criticizing, give constructive criticism, they are not all bad, there are good ones out there.
Let’s just say thank God that T&TEC didn’t decide to strike
😀 :v (y)
Wa Chubble is Dis via Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Wachubbleisdis?ref=ts&fref=ts
CNC3 via Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CNC3Television?ref=ts&fref=ts
Guardian: VIDEO: Gridlock across T&T roadways as police conduct stop and search exercises during rush hour traffic. Video: Jeff Mayers / T&T Guardian