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SHAWN CUMBERBATCH, [email protected]

More power

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POLICE will be able to issue instant protection orders, enter homes without a warrant and seize the firearms of suspected offenders as Government moves to give greater protection to victims of domestic violence.

As the Domestic Violence (Protection Orders) (Amendment) Bill 2016 was piloted by Minister of Social Care Steve Blackett yesterday in the House of Assembly, representatives of women’s organisations sat in on the debate and heard that crime fighters will have increased powers when intervening in domestic confrontations.

During the first sitting of the House after the Christmas recess, Blackett explained that in the face of persistent complaints that society had failed the victims of domestic violence, Government was making changes to the act to give the Royal Barbados Police Force the power to issue emergency protection orders on the spot, enter homes without warrants, and seize firearms and other weapons in the possession of suspected perpetrators.

People who breach protection orders will be liable on summary conviction to a $2 500 fine or six months imprisonment, or both, he said.

Please read the full story in today’s Midweek Nation, or in the eNATION edition.