The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service welcomed eight new recruits to its ranks on Thursday.
In a ceremony at the Police Training and Development Unit in Governor’s Square, Police Commissioner David Baines swore in the new recruits gathered from a local recruitment drive launched in March.
“It’s only the second time in 30 years that we’ve had an all Caymanian or permanent resident class. I think we started off with 280 applicants and we’ve ended up with eight,” said Mr. Baines.
Taking the oath and vow of affirmation, recruits ranging from 18 to 35 years were: Police Constables Trishana Osbourne, Steven Brown, Cody Barnett, Dave Barnett, Tamar Thomas, Darado Thompson, Rayan Chambers and Diana Myles.
The recruits will begin 17 weeks of intensive training, after which they will receive on-the-job training during their two-year probationary period. The training will prepare them to be posted in units such as criminal investigation, traffic, marine, air operations, financial crime and the family support unit.
Mr. Baines said he was impressed with the level of interest and quality of candidates this year. The police service received 283 applications. Of these, 166 applicants met the minimum criteria, which included the requirements of Caymanian nationality or permanent residency.
The commissioner said he was trying to raise the professionalism of the service. “That in itself means that you routinely see higher education qualifications, which is not just an issue for policing – it’s an issue across society. There’s an expectation now that people will have college education or university degrees. It’s a recognition of society,” he said.
He told the recruits, “No longer can you walk past any incidents in the streets, where it is your duty to take action to intervene, to protect and indeed to uphold the whole law, … duty or not, there is an expectation on you.”
He said the recruits were now at the point where they went from being civilians to being police officers with legal requirements and legal duties to uphold.
The recruits then took the oath and vow of affirmation to uphold the law.
“Be proud to be police officers, wear your rank and title with pride,” Mr. Baines said. “There are three outcomes to any incident, make it better, make it worse or leave it the same.” Deputy Commissioner Stephen Brougham, Deputy Commissioner Anthony Ennis, Inspector Kevin Ashworth, Detective Chief Inspector Raymond Christian, Detective Superintendent Mike Cranswick, Chief Inspector Claudia Brady and Superintendent Adrian Seales were among those who witnessed the ceremony, along with the families of the recruits.
Ashani Francis-Collins contributed to this story.