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Is GREAT program the antidote to crime?

The Police Department has adopted a softer side of policing as an alternative to the ‘big stick’ approach. The Gang Resistance Education and Training program (G.R.E.A.T.) equips police officers with the necessary tools needed. There have been a number of GREAT training, the latest one, took place this week and had a total of 39 graduates. Tiffany Poppell, Lead Instructor Designer of the GREAT program spoke to Love News.

Tiffany Poppell, Lead Instructional Designer, GREAT

“We actually had two trainings and one was a three day training and the other one was a two day training. The three day training was the GREAT Officer in Service and the two day training was the GREAT Families trainings and what those are for is it’s for the certified officers who are already GREAT instructors and the three day training gives them advanced skills and helps them with strategies for problems or challenges they might be having in the classroom and allows them to network and make contacts with other people in the GREAT team and to just help them meet the needs that they need to have in the classroom. So it’s to help them become more knowledgeable and to deal with challenges that they might be experiencing. Now the families training that we had just now is for certified GREAT instructors and what that does is that it authorizes them to then teach the other component that we have which is the GREAT families and that one allows them to go into the communities to meet with families and children and parents and guardians and it helps them it’s a six week program that allows them to teach families to become better communicators, resolve conflicts, talks about internet safety and how to avoid bullying and things like that.”

Police officers from Guatemala also participated in the training.

Tiffany Poppell, Lead Instructional Designer, GREAT

“We had for this particular training all week long we had ten Guatemalans here and we had simultaneous interpretation so we get to wear the headsets and that way we all communicate with one another it’s very interactive and they got to lunch together and it was interesting today at the graduation ceremony they had to leave a little bit early and so everyone got up and they hugged and they were telling one another bye and you develop a lot of good friendships and relationships when we have these trainings where the different countries are attending and we also conducted trainings in Guatemala where the Belizeans went to Guatemala.”

Assistant Superintendent of Police Gerald Jones, Commander of the Community Orienting Policing Program, told Love News about the officers who took part in this week’s training and how it will help them to effectively execute their duties.

ASP Gerald Jones – Commander of the Community Orienting Policing Program

“From Monday we had 39 participants on a GREAT Families component training here at the Radisson. We had 29 of our very own police officers and ten members from the Guatemalan Police Department. They went through a one week course on the GREAT component for the families. In the past we used to have the truancy officers from the Human Development and different social partners and other people to identify problems when it comes to students but that was not a part where the police would be able to identify these problems because of the GREAT training and the GREAT Families component we are now able to identify who are bullying a child in the school, who lack of parental guidance because all of these things really bring down the society so we want to make sure that we go and identify and with this training now these officers whenever they are on patrol it will help them to identify these behavioral problems.”

Basically, the police are adopting the concept that it takes a village to raise a child in order to reverse the number of crime incidents.