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Police benefits should be reviewed, says Roban

Shadow Home Affairs Minister Walter Roban

Police benefits allowing 100 per cent coverage of health insurance should be reviewed, Shadow National Security Minister Walter Roban said, while affirming the Opposition’s support for the service.

“If the Bermuda Government is serious about cutting costs, it should be looking everywhere,” Mr Roban said, after several lengthy terms of paid sick leave were revealed in response to his parliamentary questions.

“Not too long ago we had a situation where, because of serious violent crime the country was experiencing, there was a need to up expenditure on Police, and that was well deserved,” Mr Roban said.

“But is it wrong at this point to consider a thorough review to see where expenditure can be reduced, or perhaps the benefits enjoyed by Police, so that everyone is carrying their fair share? Other areas of public service endure cuts, and they continue to. These should be equally shared. We support what the Police do and appreciate what they have to confront on a regular basis. But they do not share in health insurance while other civil servants are enduring double-digit increases in health insurance.”

Police should consider sharing the burden, he said, “especially if we have people who rightly or wrongly are on long-term sick leave”.

“Certainly the report we got in the House on those questions about sick days highlight a situation of some concern,” Mr Roban added.