Ministry, other stakeholders to restart Crime Stoppers Programme

The National Commission on Law and Order agreed that the Home Affairs Ministry and the police would continue to collaborate with the private sector to restart the Crime Stoppers Programme.

The Police Security Industry Partnership (POLSEC) will also be restarted, a press release from the Ministry of Home Affairs said. POLSEC was conceptualised in 2003 by the Private Sector Commission and the Guyana Police Force. POLSEC involves sharing crime and security information between private security firms and the police. A phone number – 225-0554 – had been established to receive the data though no rewards are offered to persons who share crime tips with the police.

The Crime Stoppers Programme is similar to POLSEC, however, tips provided from the different communities are given to police and investigated. Rewards are then offered if a conviction arises from the data provided.

Crime Stoppers is a non-profit community programme designed to combat the heightened levels of fear resulting from the increase in certain types of crime. It is a partnership between the community, police and media as it allows the public to assist in the fight against crime without fear of retaliation as it guarantees anonymity and confidentiality.

The programme entails setting up a hotline or hotlines where the public are encouraged to call in and give anonymous tips about crime. This information is then referred to the relevant law enforcement agency and, in some cases, rewards are given. The method used to reward anonymous tipsters is the same one used in a number of countries where callers are given a code number when they contact Crime Stoppers and, if he/she wishes to claim a reward they have to nominate a branch of a particular bank, give the bank manager the code and the reward amount and collect the sum.

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