Prisoner officers in Trinidad and Tobago are seeking asylum in Canada citing fears over the personal safety following the murder of at least two officers in recent weeks.

“Prison officers and by extension their families no longer feel safe in Trinidad and Tobago and there is no indication that anything will change anytime soon. We are going through with what could be the only life-saving step for both our members and their families,” said president of the Prison Officers Association (POA) Ceron Richards.

Richards, who recently led more than 50 officers and their families to the Canadian High Commission in Trinidad to request asylum in Canada, said that he is disappointed in government’s response to increasing attacks and even the murder of several officers

He said that the association exhausted all its options in trying to meet National Security Minister Edmund Dillon but despite repeated assurances from officials, they are no closer to a meeting to address security concerns.

According to the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation, Richards hinted that if asylum is granted prison officers may leave en masse.

Last month, a prison officer was shot and killed less than a month after another was murdered at a bar by a former prisoner.

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