ST. PETERS–Minister of Justice Anna E. Richardson has issued a decree in which the districts of Dutch Cul de Sac, St. Peters, Ebenezer and South Reward have been designated areas for stricter law enforcement in connection with nuisance and criminal behaviour by truant students and loitering juveniles.
According to decree 2021/971, which was issued August 12 and was published in the National Gazette on August 20, police officers will be strictly monitoring compliance with the National Ordinance on Compulsory Education. They will also act against other punishable behaviour, in particular concerning violations of the traffic, weapons and drug ordinances.
According to Article 1 of the decree, police officers will be patrolling in the four districts between 6:00am and 6:00pm. The ministerial decree is valid until July 1, 2022.
In particular, schools and residents in and around the so-called “School District” experience nuisance from students who skip school and young people who hang around in the area during and after school hours.
School absenteeism and the resulting nuisance and crime is a point of attention not only for school boards in secondary education, but also for law enforcement.
The nuisance caused by young people mainly manifests itself in noisy and intimidating loitering, fights with and without weapons, vandalism, theft, and the use and trafficking of narcotics.
The schools, residents and community police officers have expressed their concerns about this, as well as about the safety and quality of life in the residential areas surrounding the schools, it is stated in the decree.
In the minister’s opinion, the importance of maintaining public order in Cul de Sac, St. Peters, Ebenezer and South Reward outweighs the interests of each individual in respect of their private lives.
The decree can be found on website sintmaartengov.org under the banner “ Laws and National Gazette”.