MARIGOT–A convention was signed this week that sees a young St. Martin social worker, Prescillia Gazon, assisting the Gendarmerie by intervening and helping to resolve social issues that rank-and-file Gendarmes are not always qualified to address, nor have the time to spend on.
Prescillia’s official job title is “Intervenante Sociale en Gendarmerie.” She holds a State Diploma as Assistante de Service Sociale and will be working and living on site at the Gendarmerie headquarters in La Savane. She is effectively a link between the Gendarmerie and the Social Services of the Collectivité.
She formerly worked for Les Liasions Dangereuses helping the population to know their rights and assisting with other useful information.
The convention, in effect for one year, was signed by Lt. Colonel Sébastien Manzoni for the Gendarmerie, Préfète Déléguée Anne Laubies for the State, President Daniel Gibbs for the Collectivité and President of Association Les Liasions Dangereuses, Ketty Karam.
The position is financed by the State and Collectivité and was included in the 2015 Contrat de Ville. Recruitment for the position was undertaken by Les Liasions Dangereuses which was put in charge of the project. Ketty Karam noted there were six candidates for the position who were interviewed by a recruitment committee.
Prescillia Gazon (25) will provide support to the Gendarmerie, on the spot with Gendarmes where necessary, by intervening in domestic disputes, domestic violence, marital troubles and other issues such as maltreatment of children and report those matters to the specialist services.
In other instances, she can assist with filing complaints and giving advice on obtaining documents. She will also act as a link to psychologists, psychiatric care and the judiciary system.
“This type of position already exists in France with men and women from the civil sector working with the Gendarmerie on social issues,” explained Lt. Colonel Manzoni. “It’s not the job of Gendarmes. They are not trained to deal with these issues. Prescillia will complement the job of Gendarmes to find good solutions in cooperation with the State, Collectivité and various institutions. It’s good for the Gendarmerie and good for the victims.”
The convention was due to be signed on September 6 but was postponed due to the arrival of Hurricane Irma. Manzoni added it is a first for St. Martin to have a social worker working with the Gendarmerie although social workers work with the Gendarmerie in Guadeloupe.