Officers attached to police stations in the south-western peninsula will be made to undergo polygraph testing from next week.
This was announced by Police Commissioner Gary Griffith at yesterday’s weekly police media briefing at the Police Administration Building in Port of Spain.
Griffith said, in addition to polygraph tests, officers would be expected to undergo random drug testing as well.
“From next week we are going to commence the polygraph testing and random drug testing for persons to ensure that an individual may not in any way compromise the situation (police operations and investigations). And this is not a way to discipline police officers, but it gives the commissioner the prerogative to provide and ensure that that area in the south-western peninsula is airtight,” Griffith said.
Speaking with the Express yesterday, incoming president of the TTPS Social and Welfare Association (TTPSSWA), Insp Gideon Dickson, said he had been made aware of the new tests to be administered to officers of the south-western peninsula.
And while he noted that the commissioner of police had a responsibility to administrate over the organisation, he said the TTPSSWA had the responsibility to represent its members, and some members have raised an issue with this.
“I know that there are some members who have concerns over this process. Not because they are unwilling to undergo the testing, but they wish to know why this is being done, where it is being done, and how persons will be chosen. This is something that I know the Association and the Police Commissioner will have to discuss in our first meeting. Till then I don’t want to say much to give the impression that we are on any side.
“But our party will be operating in a manner that will always seek out the best interests of our membership. So I am looking forward to our first meeting,” Dickson said.
Incumbent president of the Association, Insp Michael Seales, said he agreed with Dickson’s stance, adding that he did not wish to say anything against his decisions.
“It is his show now, and he is going to be the one making the tough decisions. This is just one of many hurdles that he will have to face. So I don’t want to say anything that will be against of his decisions,” Seales told the Express.