Lone woman tops class of 196 police constables

Observer staff reporter

Thursday, January 31, 2019

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Donique Anderson is finally a police officer.

The Trewlawny native who was the only woman among the 196 recruits is the epitome of triumph over struggle.

Anderson's journey with the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) began in 2017 but she dropped out due to illness.

Anderson fulfilled her dream yesterday when she completed her training course and left the Police College of Jamaica in Twickenham Park, St Catherine, with the highest mark.

The constable, who had previously almost completed her training and was looking forward to graduating, was hospitalised for six weeks and was unable to rejoin batch 117.

The 22-year-old quickly turned around her disappointment when she became a member of batch 119 on July 7, 2018.

“My sickness really pushes me forward because some of the time I am in training and I feel a little pain, I tell myself that I am not going back to where I am coming from. It actually pushes me to work very hard to complete this training exercise,” Constable Anderson told reporters following the passing-out parade and award ceremony, yesterday.

“I did my best I ensured that whatever instructions were given to me, not because I am a female, I was expected to carry out less than what was expected of the males… They are not training individuals as it relates to gender so they don't separate males and females; everybody come together as one so I had to do what needed to be done in order to get through with the training,” she explained.

The Holland High School alumna who signed up for the JCF after she graduated from sixth form said she was inspired by her mother to become a member of the organisation.

“I chose the JCF because I want to serve my community. I want persons to look up to me, I wanted to be seen not only as an individual in the community but to be a role model for children in my community,” she said, adding that she had also signed up for the Jamaica Defence Force.

After speaking to reporters, Anderson's mother, Gem Donald, who was overcome with joy, held on to her last child as tears streamed down their faces.

“When she started and she took sick and she was so disappointed [but] I encouraged her. I said 'don't worry'. I am so grateful for her to see the final day of it has come. I just want to encourage her and to pray because I know it is not easy going out there on the road. I am just asking the Lord to keep her, guide her and protect her in whatever situation she may face,” Donald told the Jamaica Observer yesterday.

“I know it (JCF) is serious but I could not encourage her not to, because she can be one of the good police officers who can motivate the others also. I just want her to do her best. I didn't have it for them but I gave my best to them and so I just want to give God thanks,” the mother of five added.

Training officer Inspector Barbara Robinson told the Observer that Constable Anderson epitomised the strength of a woman.

“She shows it in every fibre of her being that she is here to survive,” Inspector Robinson said.

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