No fears, no regrets over 15 years of police career
Janelle De Souza
Stacey-Ann Martin followed in her father’s footsteps to join the police force and after 15 years on the job she has no regrets.
Martin is assigned to the Aranguez-based Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) and regularly patrols with soldiers in some of the country’s toughest crime hotspots.
On Christmas Day, she was the only female officer to receive an award for her outstanding work.
Martin said when she heard her name called to receive an award, it took a few seconds for her to register.
She proudly approached Acting Deputy Police Commissioner Erla Christopher, received her award for her outstanding performance and dedication, and shed a tear or two of happiness and pride.
âI felt a mixture of emotions. I was really shocked to receive an award. Not only did I receive an award, but I was the only female officer to receive one. I really didn’t expect it. It quickly turned to happiness when I began to understand that the hard work I was doing didn’t go unnoticed, but was appreciated and now celebrated.
Martin has always been a willing person to work hard. In her youth, she wanted to own a business and still wants to do so at some point. But she got a job as a clerk at the Ministry of Legal Affairs and eventually wanted to put what she had learned into practice.
She was around 26 when she decided she wanted to be an officer and in 2006 she joined the police department.
âMy father was a police officer and seeing the pride he took in doing his job inspired me and my younger brother to take this path. At some point you’ll be concerned about the danger involved, but I allayed any fears I might have had and just rushed forward. “
Not once has she regretted this decision. Her passion for the profession of an officer is now so fierce that she thinks it is her calling.
Martin was initially assigned to the Traffic and Road Patrol Branch of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS). She then became a member of the Environmental Management Authority Police Unit and has since been with IATF for the past three years.
She told WMN that she joined the IATF because the unit had more opportunities for growth, knowledge and experience as well as a change of environment.
She explained that there are many different departments within the IATF, such as community policing, strike operations and team, administrative department and case management, and officers can learn a a bit of everything.
At the IATF, Martin takes on both administrative and operational roles, completing the necessary paperwork and participating in patrols, roadblocks, stop and search exercises, etc.
In order to do this, members had to take numerous courses, including survival training and training in the use of different types of firearms.
âIt doesn’t matter which unit you’re attached to, the police work where the police work. But the IATF is a specialized unit so, based on our areas of operations – Sea Lots, Beetham, Laventille, Port of Spain – it could be considered more risky. However, working anywhere as an officer is high risk.
And although the IATF is a male-dominated unit, she said she is treated with respect, not discriminated against and that they all work in tandem as a team, as guardians of their own. brothers and sisters.
Martin, who is engaged and has four children, describes herself as a person of prayer who always goes above and beyond, which she believes helped her receive the award.
âI am first and foremost a mother so, having a protective nature, it is natural for me to want to help people. I am a very spiritual and very outgoing person so I can get along with everyone and am always ready to help.
She said her family were concerned for her safety, but were very supportive of her career.
âMy son is three years old and every day he says, ‘Mom, be careful. I love you. Meet on your return. And he wants to be a police officer when he’s older because he admires his mother.
She added that at some point in her 15 years of service, she found a balance between work and home.
âIt works pretty well for me. I don’t bring my professional life home or my personal life to work. I’ve seen my share of gruesome scenes, but on the way home I condition myself and take care of everything. I’ve learned to compartmentalize the two, so by the time I open my front door it’s mom and wife mode.
She said she didn’t know what the future held in store for her, but that TTPS is a diverse organization and looks forward to any growth. And if she were ever to have her own business as she had dreamed of, that would involve food.
âI always liked to cook when I was young. I loved seeing the joy it brought to my family when my grandmother and I cooked and the family sat and ate a meal together. I see that same joy and friendliness when I cook and we sit and have a meal together. Sharing a well-prepared meal brings out a type of emotion that cannot be properly captured in words.
âSo if I were to take the entrepreneurial route and open a business it would definitely be a family home style restaurant / kitchen where people could come and share a meal that I prepared and hopefully feel a part of that indescribable emotion that I feel while cooking and sharing a meal with my loved ones. “