Commissioner of Police Major General Antony Anderson has indicated that the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) has begun to intensify enforcement of the provisions of the Disaster Risk Management Act during the holiday season.
“We will be relentless in our fight to rid the country of lawlessness, especially those who defy orders of the Disaster Risk Management Act and we will be out there in our numbers,” said Major General Anderson during a virtual press conference on Wednesday, December 02.
“We continue to see an increase in breaches of the Disaster Risk Management Act (DRMA), and we will be ensuring that all persons who are found in breach will be prosecuted,” he added.
Arrested for breaches
Between March and November 2020, over 2,000 persons have been arrested for breaches of the DRMA. Over 60 of these persons were charged for hosting events contrary to the DRMA, as well as for breaches of the Noise Abatement Act.
Citizens are reminded that members of the JCF are authorised to enforce the measures of the Disaster Risk Management Act and take appropriate actions when breaches are detected.
According to the DRMA, where any member of the public fails to comply with the direction of the police, that individual commits a breach of section 27(1)(b) of the Disaster Risk Management Act and is liable to prosecution under section 52(b) of the Act.
Breaches include: Not wearing a mask in public places; Not maintaining social distancing; Breaching curfew orders; Protocols governing funerals and burials; and Protocols governing beaches and rivers.
The police continue to appeal to citizens to adhere to the guidelines outlined in the Disaster Risk Management Act as this will aid their safety and that of their loved ones. The public is further urged to report loud noise events, any suspicious activities and large gatherings to the nearest police station or the 119 police emergency number.