Trinidad and Tobago Police Service

Mr Stephen Williams (MBA, MSt, LLB, LEC, MCMI) Commissioner of Police (Ag) Trinidad and Tobago Police

Mr Stephen Williams (MBA, MSt, LLB, LEC, MCMI) Commissioner of Police (Ag) Trinidad and Tobago Police

On behalf of the TTPS, I take this opportunity to welcome you to the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) portal on the Commonwealth of Nations website.

Trinidad and Tobago has a population of over 1.3 million and is a twin island Republic located among the most southern islands in the Caribbean.  The islands boast a diverse ethnic mix that mainly comprises people of African and Indian descent but which also includes persons of European, Chinese and Middle Eastern ancestry.   This multi- ethnic society is known for its rich natural resources, diverse music – steel pan and soca – and of course, its carnival festival which attracts thousands of local and international revellers and spectators.

The mandate of the TTPS is to:

  • maintain law and order;
  • preserve peace;
  • protect life and property;
  • prevent and detect crime;
  • apprehend offenders and
  • enforce all laws and regulations with which it is charged.

In 2013, the organization’s change in leadership brought with it a new approach to policing Trinidad and Tobago.  In the last 10 years, the country had experienced unprecedented levels of violent crimes in which the firearm was used in over 70% of the homicides.  This fuelled fear of crime among the population.  Safety and security became the country’s number one concern.  Additionally, fatalities and serious injuries on our roadways were of growing concern to citizens and public confidence and trust in the police was low.  The TTPS was challenged to reduce violent crimes, meet the heavy demand for increased policing of the roadways to make them safer and restore public confidence and trust.  Targeted crime reduction and prevention strategies, heavy law enforcement and initiatives to improve the TTPS-community relationship were obviously the way forward.

Annual operating plans[1] and a three-year (2014 – 2016) strategic plan were developed  to guide the implementation of modern proactive policing strategies which include evidence based policing, hot spots policing, intensified seizures of illegal firearms and ammunition, stops and searches, COMPSTAT and community oriented policing (policing for people).  Expanding our use of technology and building capacity, motivating employees and improving their morale are also critical components of these “roadmaps”.  The actions laid out in the plans are geared towards accomplishing our four strategic goals – reduce and detect crime, improve safety on our roadways and in other public places, improve the level of citizen-centred service and strengthen the organization – and ultimately our vision of making every place in Trinidad and Tobago safe.

The results that we have achieved since 2013 are a testimony of the effectiveness of the strategies that have thus far been implemented. A comparison of the year 2012 with 2013 revealed significant results: 30% reduction in violent crimes, 26% reduction in serious crimes[2], 14% increase in the number of firearms found and seized, 24% reduction in road traffic accidents (RTAs) and 26% reduction in fatal RTAs – the lowest since 2005.  The year 2013/2014 comparison was no different.   In 2014, a pattern of reduction in murders began in key locations which traditionally accounted for the largest number of these crimes.  Additionally, total serious crimes was the lowest the country had experienced in the last 30 years (since 1985) – 8% reduction, 26% increase in number of firearms found and seized and RTAs and fatal RTAs the second lowest in the last 10 years.  Greater effort is being taken to strengthen collaboration with internal and external stakeholders as well as improve the relationship between the police and public.  Ongoing training of officers in customer service, positive engagement of youths via police youth clubs, community/town meetings, council meetings, a weekly media briefing, a daily interactive television programme to raise public awareness on safety and security, a road safety and an anti-bullying campaign are some of the key activities in train to help to strengthen this vital relationship.

The economic welfare of our country, our future growth and development and the contentment of our people are heavily dependent on the impact of the services that we provide.  The police leadership will continue to simultaneously lead by example, explore and implement best practice, motivate staff members, encourage purposeful teamwork and fortify its relationship with the public to ensure that every place in Trinidad and Tobago is indeed safe.

I encourage you to visit the TTPS website to learn more about the organization and what we are doing in Trinidad and Tobago.  You are also invited to come and experience Trinidad and Tobago and all that this beautiful twin island Republic offers.  We look forward to forging new relationships with other Commonwealth members and their partners.

Stephen Williams
Commissioner of Police (Ag.)
Trinidad and Tobago Police Service

[1] Plans for 2014 and 2015 are accessible on our website www.ttps.gov.tt and portal

[2] Serious Crimes is the collective term used to describe a group of crimes that include the following offences: (a) murders (b) woundings & shootings (c) sexual offences (d) kidnapping (e) burglaries & break-ins (f) robberies (g) fraud offences (h) general larceny (i) larceny motor vehicles (j) larceny dwelling house and (k) narcotic offences

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