The Government of Dominica on Tuesday announced it will amend legislation in parliament at the next sitting, to provide full insurance coverage for all police officers in Dominica.
The police welfare association here says this is welcome news for officers.
This coverage is also expected to extend to their immediate families.
The Police Welfare Association recently expressed concern that police officers remained at risk on the job as they did not have medical insurance.
Minister for Justice, Immigration and National Security Rayburn Blackmoore says a 1997 amendment tied the government to one insurance provider
“In 1997 the then government sort to amend section 10 of the police act chp 14.01 to implement a group health and group life insurance scheme for police officers. The downside to this amendment was that it had the effect of banning the govt of dominica to a particular insurance company”
He continued that in hindsight this did not serve the purpose that it was intended to serve. He noted that the amendment is not as simple as it appears and so close attention was paid to the situation of police, the best practices internationally, regionally and locally.
He went on to say that the amendment will now give the government the freedom to achieve the goal of medical coverage for police officers.
Mr. Blackmoore says Government is committed to providing proper medical coverage for police officers in Dominica.
“Realizing the seriousness of this issue and recognizing the need to bring closure to this issue as quickly as possible. A committee chaired by the Secretary to the Cabinet and comprising of the Permanent Secretary in the Minister of Justice Immigration and National Security, the financial secretary, attorney general, the Chief Personal officer and the chief parliamentary counsel was put together”
He spoke of a meeting held on March 21st 2019 at the Police Headquarters conference room and a draft of the amendment was presented to the Police Welfare Association which was accepted and communicated on March 22nd 2019.
Details of the new amendment seeks to reinforce the Government of Dominica commitment to provide medical coverage to the police officers and their dependents.
Blackmore stated that the government remains committed to pushing this matter forward at the next parliamentary sitting.