Learn to reach out: Police

WD Head of Crime Stoppers, Sgt Meciusela Bilo (left) with Namarai Community Post Officer Cpl Esala Matou and Inspector Penijamini Vukivou (sitting) during the outreach at Bureiwai District School. Photo: POLICE MEDIA CELL.

Students in the interior of Rakiraki are being introduced to the Safety Net concept and were encouraged by Police to have a network of friends who they can confide in during times of trouble.

This was the approach adopted by the Western Division Community Policing team who continue their visitation of schools in the interior of the Western Division in a bid to create awareness on sexual offences.

Western Divisional Manager for Community Policing (DMCP/W) Superintendent of Police (SP) Petero Tuinirarama said they started their visit last week in the Ra Province and aim to cover all schools in the Division.

“We would like to reach out first to the schools which are not easy to get to and work our way to the more accessible schools because we want all students to be aware of their rights because it is sad that our very children are becoming victims,” said SP Petero.

SP Petero said most children who are victims of these crimes don’t come forward because of the taboo placed on the subject.

The Manager for Western Community Policing said most victims don’t come forward because the perpetrators are usually someone close to them and this makes it hard for them to report.

“This is a challenge for us and we are going in to the interior of Ra creating awareness on sexual offences to our young ones so that irrespective of whether you live in the rural or urban areas everyone needs to be aware of their rights and the need for perpetrators to be brought to justice.”

Students were also encouraged to call Crime Stoppers on 919 or Emergency Line on 917 if they need any sort of assistance or advice from the Fiji Police Force.

“We have capable people on the other side of the line that can assist young children and all they need to do is to reach out, call and ask for assistance,” said SP Petero.