Wed | Sep 30, 2020

Waterford residents get sign with JPs’ names

Published:Saturday | August 8, 2020 | 12:16 AMRuddy Mathison/Gleaner Writer
A recently erected sign with the names of the justices of the peace in Waterford, St Catherine.
A recently erected sign with the names of the justices of the peace in Waterford, St Catherine.

THE CONSTANT complaints by residents of the Waterford community in Portmore about not knowing the justices of the peace (JPs) who were appointed to serve the area were addressed by the unveiling of a sign with the names of all seven JPs.

The sign, erected at the entrance to the community, is the first of its kind and was made possible by the Waterford Community Development Committee, in association with the councillor for the division, Fenley Douglas, and the Social Development Commission.

Custos of St Catherine Jeffery McKenzie, along with Portmore Mayor Leon Thomas, Member of Parliament Colin Fagan, and Douglas, unveiled the sign at a ceremony on Wednesday. He praised the move as a novel idea that he would replicate in other communities throughout the parish.

“I applaud the conceptualisers of this initiative, and I believe it will have a great impact on the community as it will foster greater collaboration between the justices of the peace and members of the community,” McKenzie stated.

He said the move would allow the residents to know the JPs who were appointed to serve the community.

“Waterford is a community of some 30,000 residents, most of whom have been experiencing difficulty over the years finding JPs in the community to sign documents and perform other services,” revealed Douglas.

“This public display of their names on the signboard will help residents in identifying these JPs who were appointed to serve the people,” said Douglas, adding that over the years, they have largely been inaccessible to community members.

Douglas further pointed out that based on the population density in the Waterford community, a total of seven JPs was woefully inadequate. He disclosed that the custos had given assurances that he would appoint additional justices to serve in that area.

Fagan was also pleased with the initiative, citing the bond that will now exist between the residents and the JPs as a significant step.