POA throws its support behind the JPF in battle over overdue back paySaturday, November 27, 2021
The Police Officers' Association (POA) has endorsed the call by the Jamaica Police Federation (JPF) for a speedy resolution to the matter of overdue payments to rank and file police officers.
In a release on Friday, The Association stated that there can be “no debate concerning the terms of agreement” from the 2008 negotiations between law enforcers and the Government in relation to overtime back pay.
The POA highlighted that “the Courts of Jamaica further cemented the terms of the agreement, when it was ruled that breaches occurred when the police were required to work beyond the eight hours per day work shift without payment for the extra hours”.
It warned should the issue of outstanding pay not be resolved, “a fallout in operational activities” should be expected.
“The JPF represents the rank and file members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), which accounts for approximately 97 percent of the force, and it must be duly noted that the service of these members makes the difference between life and death for the citizens of Jamaica,” the statement read.
The POA also highlighted that as a result of inflation rates and increased lending rates from the Bank of Jamaica, “the proposal made by the relevant department of government to make payments due 2019 to present over a six year period is indeed untenable.”
“The value of those funds made over such a period in light of inflation and lending rates will be meaningless and pitiful.”
It noted that that law enforces face dire stresses related to expenses incurred in conducting their duties.
The POA has called on the government to “reconsider the proposal laid out by the JPF for payments from 2008 to present, indicating that although “the current economic crises of the country cannot be disregarded, neither can its social crisis where the crime rate is trending in an unfavourable manner, and measures to manage the COVID-19 pandemic have seen the resources of the JCF being utilized far beyond its current capabilities.”
“The men and women of the JCF are deserving of its due compensation and, even more so, the desired recognition and value is being demanded from its employers,” the statement read.