Name of Public Authority: Bermuda Police Service
The objective of the Public Access to Information (PATI) Act 2010 is to give the public the legally enforceable statutory right to request and obtain information held by public authorities, including government ministries, departments and other public bodies including the Bermuda Police Service.
The PATI Act 2010 is intended to increase transparency and eliminate unnecessary secrecy. This will be accomplished by informing the public about the activities of all public authorities and by generally placing more information into the public domain. The Bermuda Police Service will provide information wherever possible and provide information and data via our web site to automate the process and make access easier still.
Under the PATI Act 2010, public authorities must produce an Information Statement. An Information Statement is a commitment to routinely and proactively provide information to the public. What follows is the Bermuda Police Services Information Statement which models the Bermuda Government guidelines for Information Statements.
The Bermuda Police Service is committed to delivering an open and transparent service whenever possible and it is our intention to publish information in our Information Statement that the public have an interest in viewing. However, as we are committed to preventing and detecting crime in order to protect the community we serve, it should be recognized that certain information and categories of data may not be disclosed.
Information concerning ongoing investigations, investigative methods, intelligence and the use of related operational techniques must be protected. They are central to the maintenance of a safe and just society. In this respect, the Bermuda Police Service will, when appropriate, apply reasonable consideration of the exemptions afforded under the PATI Act (see below for a full list of exemptions).
The PATI Act 2010 provides that certain information held by public authorities will be covered by exemptions and cannot or may not be disclosed upon request because of the harm that disclosure is likely to cause. Harm generally refers to substantial damage to a particular interest, and must also be real, likely and significant.
The exemptions relate to records pertaining to the following areas:
Section A: Structure, Organization and Legislation:
Constitutional Authority - His Excellency the Governor
Section 62(1) of the Bermuda Constitution Order 1968 sets out special responsibilities for the Governor of Bermuda to include the internal security of Bermuda and the Bermuda Police Service.
Section 87 of the Constitution vests power in the Governor to appoint the Commissioner of Police and the Deputy Commissioner of Police, and to remove or exercise disciplinary control over persons holding or acting in those offices, after consultation with the Public Service Commission.
Legal Authority - Commissioner of Police
Section 3(1) of the Police Act 1974 sets down command of the Service under the Commissioner, subject to general directions of policy with respect to the maintenance of public safety and public order as the Governor may give him.
The Commissioner shall determine the use and control of the operations of the Service and shall be responsible, subject to such directions as the Governor may give him, for the administration of the Service.
Legal Authority - Deputy Commissioner of Police
Section 3(2) of the Police Act 1974 provides that any act which may be done, ordered or performed by the Commissioner may, subject to the orders and direction of the Commissioner, be done, ordered or performed by the Deputy Commissioner.
Delegated Authority - Minister of Labour, Home Affairs & Housing
In 1978, under the provisions of Section 62(2) of the Bermuda Constitution Order, the Governor of Bermuda delegated the following responsibilities as they relate to the police to the (then) Minister of Home Affairs:
Executive Powers - Police Operations
The Police exercise their authority and powers under the Criminal Code 1907, the Police And Criminal Evidence (PACE) Act 2006, the Misuse of Drugs Act 1972, the Road Traffic Act 1947, The Motor Car Act 1951, the Liquor Licence Act 1974, the Summary Offences Act 1926, the Proceeds of Crime Act 1987, the Bail Act 2010 and many other statutes of legislation that govern law enforcement.
Section B1: Functions, powers, duties of the Authority
The strategic focus of the Bermuda Police Service for 2015 - 2018 is:
Boards and Committees:
Section B2: Functions, powers, duties of the Authority
The PATI legislation places the same obligations upon all public bodies.
Section C: Services and Programs
The Vision Statement of the Bermuda Police Service " We see a police service working in partnership with the community for a safer Bermuda" by focusing and engaging in five priority areas:
The key activities of the BPS are:
This is achieved through the provision of:
Section D: Records and Documents Held
Service Standing Instructions
This, the largest section of policies and instructions, comprises the majority of the detailed procedures for carrying out the multitude of operational policing duties.
O1- Operational General
O2- Operational Division/Department/Unit
O3 - Operational Traffic
O4 - Operational Criminal Investigation
O5 - Operational Patrol
O6 - Operational Prisoner & Court Related Activities
O7 - Operational Property & Evidence
O8 - Operational Support
O9 - Miscellaneous Directives
A1 Administrative General
This section contains policies outlining the structure, organization and general management of the BPS.
A2 Administrative Financial
This section contains policies concerning the reporting of hours worked (including overtime/time off); overall fiscal management of the BPS; and compensation for damage to personal effects.
A3 Administrative Personnel
This section contains policies concerning the welfare of the members of the BPS; recruitment; grievances; recruitment and renewal processes; promotion; allocation and distribution of personnel; and membership in specialist teams.
A4 Administrative Training
This section contains policies concerning the overall training of members of the BPS; certain specialized areas of training; and overseas travel/training and subsistence.
A5 Administrative Committees
This section is intended to deal with any established committees within the BPS. It presently contains no policies.
A6 Administrative Technology
This section contains policies concerning the use of the internet and email; audits; backups; and software.
A7 Administrative Uniform, Technology & Fleet
This section contains policies concerning the purchase and maintenance of the BPS vehicle fleet; seatbelts; and use of warrant cards by BPS members.
A8 Administrative Plant & Facilities
This section is intended to deal with the physical plant and connected facilities of the BPS. At present it contains only one policy concerning the BPS Gym.
A9 Administrative Communications
This section contains policies concerning the means and method of issuing instructions and directives internally; and standards of communication outside of the BPS.
Strategies and Action Plans
This section holds a number of strategies or plans designed to deal with specific issues affecting Bermuda.
Gang and Violence Reduction Strategy
A strategy intended to introduce proactive and community based initiatives to counteract, contain and reduce the incidences of gang related violence.
Road Policing Strategy
In recognition of the fact that virtually every resident of Bermuda uses the roads in one way or another, this plan is intended to optimize BPS actions, both proactive and reactive, to traffic infractions, dangerous and impaired driving, collisions (fatal and otherwise) and criminal activity.
This group of instructions and procedures covers a long list of duties, outlining many elements of the operations of the BPS and the Bermuda Reserve Police, by division. Due to the ever changing nature of legislation, operational needs and public expectations of the BPS, they are classified as 'interim' policies/procedures until such time as a permanent policy is created.
I-1 Instructions - General Instructions
I-2 Instructions - Operational Procedures
I-3 Instructions - Community Policing Division
I-4 Instructions - Policing Support Division
I-5 Instructions - Serious Crime Division
I-6 Instructions - Drugs & Intelligence Division
I-7 Instructions - Corporate Services Directorate (HR/Finance)
I-8 Instructions - Reserve Police
Section E: Administration (all public access) Manuals
Section F: Decision-making Documents
The Bermuda Police Service has a decision making policy, the purpose of which is to provide all employees of the organisation clear guidelines on the procedures regarding making and recording professional and ethical decisions. Any and all decisions will be based on the best interests of the Bermuda Police Service, having due regard to the Service's Core Values, Mission Statement and Code of Conduct.
When decisions are made, consideration should be given to the following principles that are established under the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR):
Guidance to decision making is already provided for in the relevant manuals and in Service Standing Instructions for complex operations. For the types of decisions that are not already covered by other documents, guidance is provided by the Professional & Ethical Decision making policy, which is predicated on the Service Decision Model:
All employees are accountable for their decisions and must be prepared to provide a rationale for what they did.
Section G: The Information Officer
The Information officer for the Bermuda Police Service can be contacted as follows;
The Public Access to Information (PATI) office
Bermuda Police Service HQ
PO BOX 530 HM
Tel: (441) 295-0011 or (441) 247-1763
Section H: Any Other Information
The Bermuda Police Service will provide guidance on making a PATI application and will provide the necessary application forms on its website: www.bermudapolice.bm
Alternatively, application forms can be obtained at the PATI office or at any police station.
Section 3: Information Statement: Copies and Updates
Every public authority shall update its information statement at least once a year, and make it available for inspection by the public at reasonable times by [s5(1-5), PATI Act]:
Copies of the Bermuda Police Information Statement can be found at the following locations;