A ‘life-changer’ for blind officer

Residents calling George Town police station might never know that one of the young ladies answering the phone and transfering calls so efficiently is doing so without the benefit of sight.

Keisha Martin

Mrs Keisha Martin. Photo: Submitted

Mrs Keisha Martin, aged 26, has been registered blind for 22 years and has worked for the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service (RCIPS) as a communications officer for the last 8 years. Thanks to the support of various people and government departments, Mrs Martin recently completed a 16-month computer training course at the Daytona Community College enabling her to utilise technology in a way she never could before.

‘I’m extremely grateful to everyone who supported me and helped make this possible,’ said the mother of one. ‘I have never been able to use a computer at all but now I can surf the internet, open emails and even book my own airline tickets. It really has changed my life.’

Mrs Martin says she was only able to complete the course thanks to the assistance of the RCIPS, the Ministry of Education and some generous members of the public. ‘There are a number of people I would like to single out,’ commented Mrs Martin. ‘Commissioner of Police, Mr Stuart Kernohan, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Mr Anthony Ennis, The Honorable Alden McLaughlin, Angela Martins, Jennifer Smith and Annette Chan of the Ministry of Education, Miss Sharon Scott, and Mr Paul Myers. These people were instrumental in making it happen for me,’ she said.

The RCIPS is now investigating the possibility of purchasing talking software so that Mrs Martin can utilise her new-found skills in the workplace by entering reports into the system and giving callers updates on investigations. Head of the Crime Desk, Detective Inspector Christsandra Mitchell, is assisting with this and has already acquired demo software for Mrs Martin to become familiar with.

‘I adore my job and am extremely grateful for what has been done for me and the opportunities I am being given,’ she said.

Thanks are also sent to all RCIPS members who teamed together to help Mrs Martin purchase a personal lap top computer. ‘There is no doubt in my mind that having my own machine helped me pass the course,’ she added.