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#400529 - 02/18/11 03:36 PM Quality Of Life Crimes To Be Addressed
Marty Offline
On June 2nd of last year, the Prime Minister at a packed press conference held at the Biltmore Hotel in Belize City, presented his administration's answer to rampant crime by outlining a programme dubbed Restore Belize. Today as part of the Restore Campaign Belize, the Ministry of Police and Public Safety issued a release saying that effective yesterday, Wednesday, February 16th, it has officially launched a Quality of Life campaign. The campaign will address those breaches of the law that are generally considered to be of a minor and non-violent nature. Here's how the Prime Minister described them at last year's launching of Restore Belize.

Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
"Another initiative, another objective is to target aggressively the so called "quality of life crimes" now this refers to the relatively minor non-violent illegal type of behavior that can collectively undermine people sense of wellbeing and public safety and that contributes to the whole ora of slippage as a society and that to some extent are almost directly related to the larger crimes having to do with gang violence and turf conflict and all that. let me give you examples of what I mean when I say quality of life crimes; traffic offences, public drinking, petty theft, vandalism, littering - improper disposal of garbage, noise pollution from bars and night clubs, loitering - that sort of thing."

The release from the Ministry of Police and Public Safety says the initial focus will be on motorists and bicyclists who flout traffic laws. A little later on, the Police will be turning their attention to Loitering, Littering, Public Drinking, Noise Pollution and Gambling. The Police will be cracking down especially on cyclists who are caught riding 'up stop' or, more properly put, against the flow of traffic. Warnings will be issued for the first two weeks, but thereafter, fines will be levied against all offenders. The campaign will be ongoing, and the Police is asking for the public's support.

Channel 7


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#400541 - 02/18/11 03:52 PM Re: Quality Of Life Crimes To Be Addressed [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Quality of Life program will serve fines on motorists and cyclists

Raphael Martinez

The wave of crime throughout the country has resulted in an abundance of studies, plans, documents and well intended workshops to curb violence. But the latest initiative by the Ministry of Police and Public Safety is actually not geared towards the male participation in violence, but towards you, the driver and the cyclist. According to the Public Relations Officer for the ministry, under the Quality of Life campaign, those little offences that you willfully commit every day, will soon be accompanied with a fine.

Raphael Martinez, P.R. Officer, Ministry of Police and Public Safety

“The police are now embarking on a quality of life campaign and basically what this is saying is that some of the things that we have actually grown accustomed to, some of the offenses that we have actually taken for granted and we look at it as something natural—for example; the bicycle offenses, running the stoplights, noise pollution, loitering, gambling, using obscene languages. These are some of the things that we look at that affects the quality of life. So then as I’ve mentioned previously, just the reiterate, the police have found it necessary that they should be doing something about it; starting from the small things and then of course gradually move up to some of the larger things.”

Jose Sanchez

“I know you said forget, but if you travel across the western and northern borders, memory comes back that we are not suppose to run lights.”

Raphael Martinez

“Exactly, these are some of the small things that we are talking about. At this first instance we are looking at the motor vehicle and the bicycle offenses. You know the motor vehicle thing has always been an ongoing operation by the police department, but what we want to do at this time, apart from the motor vehicle operations that we are conducting, we are looking at the bicycle offenses. For this first two weeks, what we want to do is to ensure that people know that come March, people will be fined, people will be asked to respond to these charges whenever they breach these offences. If you could just go back to your laws of Belize, it’s chapter 230 and it tells you completely everything that you need to know about bicycle offences. It is wrong, for example, for bicycles to be going up one way streets, it is wrong for you to actually carry someone on your bicycle. As a matter of fact, the law states that both persons will be charged—the person who is actually carrying the person and of course the one who is being carried will also be charged.”

Martinez says that the police department is giving a two-week grace period to cyclists to ensure that bicycles are equipped with lights, bells and other relevant accoutrements.

Channel 5


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#400960 - 02/24/11 03:07 PM Re: Quality Of Life Crimes To Be Addressed [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

POLICE DEPARTMENT INTRODUCES QUALITY OF LIFE CAMPAIGN

The Quality of Life Campaign conducted by the Police Department started last week. Today Love News spoke with Public Relations Officer in the Ministry of Police and Public Safety, Raphael Martinez on the initiative.

Raphael Martinez – Public Relations Officer, Ministry of Police and Public Safety “They are at this point focusing on motor vehicles and of course bicycles. This has become necessary because you know that this has always been in regulation but it is just the enforcement of the laws that has been, well it seems to have been something of a cultural nature where Belizeans congregate in front of stores drinking beers, public drinking, Belizeans do gambling or outdoors you could pass various houses on the street sides you can see gambling taking place; you can see people littering all over and if you go just across the border you could find everyone packing their garbage, nobody is breaching any laws but as soon as they come back to Belize all hell breaks loose. Litter starts flying out of the buses, people start doing public drinking, things you could never do in another country so we are merely enforcing the law. As I mentioned before we are starting first of all with motor vehicles so we are trying to appeal to all drivers out there to ensure that all their documents, they have the proper documents, the lights are working, they are obeying the traffic laws and the traffic signs. This time we want to go to the bicycle people as well because it has become somewhat of a culture to have maybe three people, sometimes four people, babies, two babies, somebody carrying them on a bus, very dangerous practice that we have been tolerating for a while. This is basically to ensure that we are safer, we have a more safer community. We have a lot of robberies taking place with bicycles as well so this is only an effort to curb some of the smaller crimes that would probably lead to bigger things later on."

 Dalila Ical - Reporter

"You said it starts in Belize City, how soon will be able to see this initiative, the enforcement of the laws extend to the districts?

Raphael Martinez – Public Relations Officer, Ministry of Police and Public Safety

“Well I am hoping that it will take place concurrently, although we are working here in Belize City. Belize City has always been the focus because so many things happen in Belize City but I am sure that all the other branches are doing the same thing.”

The campaign will be ongoing. Martinez says that bicycle offenders will be penalized starting March first.

LOVEFM


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