TAPS – Teen And Police Service The Newest Teen Intervention Initiative By The Police

The Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force is once again initiating a programme geared towards reaching the youth and positively changing their lives. Commissioner CG Walwyn on one of his official engagements in the United States of America met and held discussions with the founders of TAPS which is an acronym for Teens and Police Service, Dr. Everette B. Penn and Assistant Houston Police Chief Brian Lumpkins (Ret.).

On Thursday 7th July 2014, the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force, in continuing its initiative in reducing crime, conducted an opening ceremony of introduction and training of the TAPS Programme to Police Officers in this Federation. The programme is designed to reduce the social distance between at risk youth and law enforcement. The Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force is not about locking children up, it is about providing public safety for all, the Commissioner said. This can be achieved through learning, interaction, and discussions between at risk youth and law enforcement officers of The Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force.

Facilitating the programme were Dr. Everett B. Penn and Assistant Houston Police Chief Brian Lumpkins (Ret). Dr. Everette B. Penn, Co-founder and Director of TAPS Academy is also an Associate Professor of Criminology at the University of Houston – Clear Lake and co-author of the book, “Race and Juvenile Justice” and author of the book, “Texas Juvenile Justice.” Assistant Police Chief Brian Lumpkins (Ret.) is a 30 year veteran of the Houston Police Department whose experience and knowledge in law enforcement is vital in managing and motivating law enforcement mentors of TAPS Academy.

The TAPS Academy has been launched in a number of major cities in the United States and Territories, Columbus, Ohio; Ponce, Puerto Rico; Galveston, Texas; and Houston, Texas. St. Kitts and Nevis is the first truly international arena for the presentation of this programme, it shows the Government’s commitment to saving its young people from a life or potential life of crime.

This course will equip officers with step by step instructions, training materials, curriculum, communication tools, and evaluation procedures which are necessary for guiding at risk youth through a positive path in society. TAPS provides an 11-week programme for troubled youth that is geared at building their skills in making positive decisions as well as building a solid foundation of trust and mutual respect between these youth and law enforcement.The country benefits from this investment in its young people.

On Thursday Dr. Penn, Assistant Police Chief Lumpkins (Ret.), and Inspector Lyndon David, the Press and Public Relations Officer of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force, were guests of two (2) of the local radio stations; Freedom FM and ZIZ. They were given the opportunity to speak to and field questions from the general public about the programme. There were a number of questions and the answers were ably given by the panelists. Callers openly gave their support to this new initiative.

Commissioner C.G. Walwyn and the Government of the Federation have given their full support to TAPS as a workable and potentially successful programme which everyone in the Federation should embrace. TAPS, Commissioner CG Walwyn says will certainly assist in the Federation’s initiative to reduce and prevent crime in particular among the youth. The Commissioner took the opportunity to publicly thank Dr. Everette B. Penn, Assistant Chief Brian Lumpkins (Ret.) for quickly responding to his request and partnering with the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force in this new and valuable initiative. The Commissioner also thanked the Anti Crime Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister, for its 100% support of TAPS in the Federation.

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