Women Police officers from nine regional countries are in Fiji to discuss ways of advancing the role of police women in the Pacific.
The 4th Executive Regional Women’s workshop is part of a series of workshops designed to develop leadership skills of women in Police forces in the Pacific region facilitated through the Pacific Police Development Program – Regional (PPDP – R) being the Australian Federal Police flagship for delivery of training in the region.
Senior women officers from Fiji, Palau, Samoa, Nauru, Guam, Solomon Islands, Kiribati, Papua New Guinea and Cook Islands are attending the week-long workshop.
Fiji’s Acting Commissioner of Police Rusiate Tudravu while opening the workshop at the Holiday Inn in Suva this morning urged the representatives to utilize the week-long gathering to network and explore avenues of advancing Policing in the Pacific region.
“The achievements of Pacific women police officers is quite impressive, with Fiji’s Unaisi Vuniwaqa becoming the first Pacific woman to become a United Nations Commissioner of Police and the Deputy Commissioners of Samoa, Nauru and Tonga all being women, has given Pacific women officers great role models”.
“These are women officers who are considered game changers in the field of policing in the Pacific, and as mentors your experience will be instrumental in molding young women officers who may bring with them higher qualifications but lack the experience needed in the evolving policing landscape”.
The Acting Commissioner said while the hierarchy system may be an obstacle, the onus is on the officers to use the skills and knowledge gained during the weeklong workshop to find innovative ways of becoming great mentors.
“As senior officers the rank you hold may be a barrier for junior officers but you have to find ways to become a mentor that is approachable, available at all times and become passionate, because without these qualities it will be difficult for younger officers to relate to who you are”.
The Pacific women officers who are part of the mentoring program have over the years demonstrated sound policing skills and as a result some have been recognized for their performance and capabilities
The workshop ends this Friday.