Administration assures public safety ‘is paramount’

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Posted on Jan 21 2020
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With the number of crimes, pranks, and suspicious activities being reported around the island, the Torres administration wants the assure the community that there will always be boots on the ground when it comes to the public’s safety.

“We never ever want to see people in our community have fear in their eyes when they’re in their homes,” said press secretary Kevin Bautista.

“This last year and a half has been rough [and] we weren’t able to put as many boots on the ground, but [the Department of Public Safety] was still able to continue its dynamic outreach,” he said. “We still were able to get DPS personnel on the ground to ensure the safety and security of people and motorists on the road.”

Bautista added that village patrolling continues to be a priority for DPS.

Just last week, two separate kidnapping attempts were reported, with DPS reminding the community to be more vigilant, and for parents to talk to their children about “stranger danger.”

Bautista also spoke about the changing nature of the demand and need for public safety officers in clarifying issues about overtime costs concerning law enforcement.

“Law enforcement is always reacting, but also proactively planning for the inevitable, the inevitable that’s also planned out as being variable,” Bautista said. “We don’t know what’s gonna (sic) happen tomorrow, we don’t know what’s gonna (sic)happen tonight, we don’t know what’s gonna (sic) happen in the next hour.”

“If they’re just about to finish their shift and all of a sudden they get a call that brings them over to Dandan or San Vicente, then, of course, it’s going to lead to an overtime cost that we did not properly prepare for, because of the volatile nature of how certain things happen that we can’t adequately plan for.”

Despite the restrictions, according to Bautista, “the guarantee from the administration is that there will be boots on the ground”, which the DPS has been able to do through police and fire academy cycles.

“It is a public safety issue that we have to watch out for,” Bautista said. “This administration is going to continue to look after people who are going after [criminals] and then bring them to justice, working with our court systems, working with the Attorney General’s Office, and working with our public safety officers at DPS.”

Iva Maurin | Author
Iva Maurin is a communications specialist with environment and community outreach experience in the Philippines and in California. She has a background in graphic arts and is the Saipan Tribune’s community and environment reporter. Contact her at iva_maurin@saipantribune.com
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