News / Africa

Liberian National Police Seeks More Female Recruits

Police chant as they march through the streets of central Monrovia, Liberia, Oct. 11, 2011.
Police chant as they march through the streets of central Monrovia, Liberia, Oct. 11, 2011.
Jennifer Lazuta
Liberia's national police force (LNP) has begun an intensive recruitment program across the country aimed at women.  The effort is part of the government’s Poverty Reduction Strategy, which calls for women to make up 20 percent of the police, the army, and other security forces by the end of 2013.

Gender-based violence, including sexual assault, has long been a problem in Liberia.  The police have been criticized in the past for poor management of the cases.

The LNP says it now hopes to improve its response to gender-based violence by recruiting more women to work in their Women and Children Protection Unit, where officers are specifically trained to handle cases related to sexual abuse and domestic violence.

LNP spokesperson Sam Collins says while several women currently hold high-level positions within the LNP, only 10 percent of the police force are women.  He said they want to double that number by the end of the year.

"To meet that benchmark, we have launched a very massive recruitment program for women," Collins explained. "We have divided the country into four regions to make sure we cut across the entire country in having females sign up for the LNP.  

In addition to deploying recruitment officers, Collins said they have also launched public awareness campaigns in markets, schools and other public places, as well as broadcast-radio programs, to encourage women to join the LNP.

"The process may be a bit slow, because we have to go out there to convince people, to tell them that they have a new career in joining the LNP as a way forward," Collins said, noting that recruiting women is not easy. "The LNP will transform them into becoming a positive headmate in their home, meaning that they have a new career to earn money and they will not become a maid in their home.  In terms of supporting their husband, they will have income.  So we spread the message telling them to come transform their lives in the LNP."

Not all women need convincing though.

"I came to join the police because I would like to be able to help my country," explained Pauline Myers, 19, a recent high school graduate.  "Right now, there are no jobs in the country. I am a high school graduate so I came to join the police today.  I am going through the process to join the Liberian National Police.  I hope I will be successful."

Collins said that all women between the age of 18 and 25 who are high school graduates with a clean criminal record are eligible to join the LNP.

He said once the women sign up, they must pass an interview, medical tests and physical fitness standards before being accepted to the police force.

The LNP said it plans to run the recruitment program through the end of August.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs