Working on average 76 hours a week, day and night, for less than $9 (US) a day, a staggering 60 percent of rangers indicated they didn’t have access to drinking water or shelter while on patrol. Rangers are also at great risk of infectious diseases. One in four rangers reported that they had contracted malaria in the last year. In Africa, this jumped up to almost 75 percent of rangers. Some of these could be greatly reduced with a simple mosquito net, yet only 20 percent report having access such equipment.

“The problem faced by rangers during patrol is that we don’t have adequate equipment to perform our work, like boots and raincoats,” said a ranger who had to remain anonymous for security reasons.

And it’s not just equipment, almost four in ten rangers didn’t feel they had adequate training when they started their job. Such preparation is vital when they come face to face with armed gangs, have to search for deadly snares, assess crime scenes, negotiate hostile situations and even provide potentially life-saving aid to a colleague who’s suffered a serious injury in the field.

Originally posted 2018-10-09 12:00:00.

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