In the line of duty : Death of breadwinner leaves family financially unstable

February 13, 2017
The spouses and children of dead police personnel are left to endure untold perils.

When Taniesha Moore's** husband was alive, his job as a policeman had taken him away from the family so much that one day she uttered some words that she now regrets.

"I even turn to him once and say 'you know that if you die it wouldn't be anything because I hardly see you so it would be like you are still at work'," Moore recalled.

But when her husband died three years ago, his monthly salary, which provided food for Moore and their children, immediately stopped. Because of her circumstances, she is unwilling to have her identity revealed.

"After the funeral and everything it reached a point where we were hungry and didn't have anything to eat and my eldest daughter was crying and saying God yuh wicked. You took away the bread winner," Moore said.

Moore's husband who was a policeman for more than 25 years died a week after he discovered that he had cancer.

The widow, who is the sole beneficiary on her husband's estate, told THE STAR that she is yet to receive her husband's pension or the gratuity of $4 million that is promised to the beneficiaries of police personnel who die while in service.

"Right now I am taking home $37,000 per month and I have bills, food to buy and a child to send to university," Moore said.

"Dem [Government] need to do better because after they take away these men from their families, they need to do something for dem families."

Rohan James, welfare director at the Police Federation, said that oftentimes the tedious process caused beneficiaries to wait for as long as seven years after the passing of a police personnel before the money is paid out.

Moore is yet to get a penny.

These days, all she can do is hope for a resolution to come. For now, however, Moore, who interning at a primary school in the corporate area, told THE STAR she and her kids regularly visited the site of her husband's grave as they seek to gain strength to carry on.

"We know that he can't hear us but we go there and tell him that if he was here we wouldn't be going through this," the struggling widow said.

** Name changed

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