His Excellency, Governor Fergusson, Premier Cannonier and Minister Dunkley with the members of the Security and Defence Review Committee: L to R: Jonathan Smith OBE, CPM, Louise Jackson, MBE, Review Chair Leopold Mills II, CBE, JP, George Jones and Ralph Richardson. (Absent from photo is Cheryl Ann Lister, OBE). *Photo supplied
His Excellency, Governor Fergusson, Premier Cannonier and Minister Dunkley with the members of the Security and Defence Review Committee: L to R: Jonathan Smith OBE, CPM, Louise Jackson, MBE, Review Chair Leopold Mills II, CBE, JP, George Jones and Ralph Richardson. (Absent from photo is Cheryl Ann Lister, OBE). *Photo supplied
Press Release

Your Excellency, Premier, members of the Review Committee:

The Government's support for this Review is based on the importance of effective internal security and strong border control to our citizens and those who visit our Island.

Bermuda's security and defence agencies include the Bermuda Police Service, the Bermuda Regiment, the Bermuda Fire & Rescue Service, HM Customs and the Department of Marine & Ports Services.

Each of these agencies works well and plays a vital role in the public safety of Bermuda.

It is the Government's hope that the Review will identify logical synergies and chart a working framework that eliminates any duplication of effort and recommends tasks that best suit the strengths and resources of all.

And as the Premier mentions, one obvious area for consideration is the maritime aspect of our border control.

There are significant opportunities to strengthen our operations at sea and to increase our interdictive presence in the fight against guns, gangs, drugs and violence.

It is also important to note that this Government's commitment to the elimination of conscription is not affected by this Review.

The committee will consider Bermuda's security needs post-conscription in keeping with this Government's promise to grow the full-time component of the Bermuda Regiment.

Let me close by thanking Mr. Mills and the Committee for agreeing to serve and by assuring the men and women of the security agencies that we value their service and look forward to working with them to better align our resources and mission in the service of the people of Bermuda.