7145 Slaughterhouse Road
Belize City, Belize Central America
(+501) 203-2098 or 203-0528
Call Us for More Info or Questions
Mon - Fri: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Our Main Office Opening Hours



BDF SEX UP

Retried BDF captain wants thorough investigations into sexual misconduct allegations

Retired captain, Derricia Castillo-Salazar, who recently created a petition to open investigations into alleged sexual misconduct within the Belize Defense Force, has written an open letter to Brigadier General, Stephen Ortega.

Retired captain, Derricia Castillo-Salazar, who recently created a petition to open investigations into alleged sexual misconduct within the Belize Defense Force, has written an open letter to Brigadier General, Stephen Ortega. In the letter, she stated that she is writing in response to interviews Ortega gave to media houses in which he assured the public that a special investigative team has been assigned by the Ministry of National Security. According to her, the role of this team is unclear. She questioned if this team will address the endemic culture of violence against women in the BDF, as well as some of its men. She then listed some questions regarding issues she believes are not being addressed. The questions are as follows: did you convene a Court of Inquiry to deal with the allegations of abuse and assault, and if so, what is the outcome; and if not, why; what procedures will the Belize Defense Force take to ensure that these allegations and similar allegations in the future are properly addressed and by when; what resources would be needed to rectify any gaps in the procedures to ensure confidential reporting and swift action? The letter continues by saying that it is imperative that there is rapid response and transparency in how these matters are being addressed by the BDF. Castillo-Salazar stated that the culture of abuse and assault within the Force requires a systematic change, which the BDF cannot cure on its own. The letter ends by stating that a public response by Ortega is being awaited.