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180 Years of full Emancipation, TCI hosts event tonight at slave plantation

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#Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – Wednesday August 1, 2018 – It is an important commemoration and a living example of how far the people of the Turks and Caicos have come… and that passionate thrust is what has given life to a partnership between the National Museum, the National Trust and the Department of Culture for what is touted as a poignant evening to remember full Emancipation in the colonies, marked 180 years ago. 

Candianne Williams, Turks and Caicos National Museum administrator explained that the 180 year anniversary is important, but the annual remembrance of the freedom from chattel slavery is not to be diminished.  A press conference was held at the Cheshire Hall former slave plantation in Providenciales to announce tonight’s event.  

“We think it fitting that we should celebrate it because it really changed the course of history, just think, in another setting 180 years ago if we were here, we would be slaves,” said Mrs. Williams.

The remembrance event begins at 6 p.m. today at the Cheshire Hall Plantation, which is currently managed by the National Trust and is a popular tourist stop.

“It is going to be a short event, just drop by and acknowledge the ancestors and acknowledge the history of what has been done and it is more like a celebration of where we have come from.”

Ms. Williams called the setting beautiful and Dr. Dellerese Higgs, Heritage Sites and Education Programme Manager – TCI National Trust, agrees.

“We chose the Cheshire Plantation because of the significance of the plantation to Provo and the history that the plantation holds for the ancestors and to people because of slavery.  We chose this setting as honouring and paying homage to our history, to our strength to the ingenuity of a people.  That is why our theme is ‘Honouring the unbreakable spirit and tenacity of the Turks and Caicos people because when we stand in this space, in this space that is filled with this strength and filled with this tenacity because look at us here we are today from a people who were enslaved…”

Dr. Higgs explained that the day and the place should mean much to islanders.

A former director of culture and still very active in the cultural education of islanders is David Bowen; he shared that it will be a night bursting with artistic expression.

“Not only do we have dancers, we have singers, we have musicians, we have poets, we have spoken word we have various things that will showcase the African traditions as its now changed and developed over time in the Caribbean and within our own hometown.  You will see a wonderful blend of the Caribbean, of the Turks and Caicos Islands, of the African culture in our celebration to celebrate our history, our culture and our ancestors.”

‘Celebrating the spirit and tenacity of the people of the Turks and Caicos’ is the theme and Mr. Bowen said, including the trials and tribulations, the Turks and Caicos could not have been the amazing country it is today; he called it a wonderful story.

“One of the things we lack here is a sense of our connection to our past and I think we need to embrace that and to celebrate it,” David Bowen shared when asked about the value of tonight’s commemoration of full abolition of slavery; he continued with, “So we have to celebrate that, give thanks for all the persons in the past who sacrificed…”

Full Emancipation from Slavery was acknowledged on August 1, 1838.  While some countries within the region have public holidays today, many more – including the Turks and Caicos Islands – will take the day off on Monday August 6, 2018.

The event to remember 180 years of an end to slavery in the islands is tonight at the Cheshire Hall Plantation in Providenciales, Turks and Caicos; it is free to the public.

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Bahamas News

Polio is back; 65 million missed shots in another COVID fall out

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#USA, August 4, 2022 – For the first time in almost a decade a new case of polio was recorded in the United States. The case which ended in paralysis emphasizes the danger the region faces as vaccination levels drop to 30-year lows.

The World Health Organization warned in early July explained that vaccination in the region of the Americas and the rest of world was dropping rapidly because of various spin off effects precipitated by the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Over 65 million infants missed out on basic vaccines in the last three years thanks to disruptions in routine healthcare, lockdowns and other circumstances. The effects are already being felt as once eradicated disease like measles and polio are once again emerging.

The Pan American Health Organization announced earlier this year the Americas are now facing another measles outbreak after having been declared free of the disease in 2016.

Dr. Jarvis Barbosa, Assistant director of PAHO said vaccination levels are now as low as they were in 1994 for measles and polio and Brazil has had several outbreaks of measles.

In the case of the United States an unvaccinated young adult developed the disease after contact with another individual vaccinated with a live version of the vaccine.

The breakout polio case in the US sent shockwaves across the country because of the severe nature of the disease. Polio is an extremely dangerous disease with no known cure. It causes paralysis in as many as 1 in 200 infected and that paralysis is permanent.

Normally very few school age children would be at risk in the Americas as the vaccine is required to start school but with the gap in vaccinations many more children are now at risk.

Polio was one of the most feared diseases of the 20th century, paralyzing and killing hundreds of thousands, especially children. Thankfully vaccinated individuals are not at risk and as such the WHO is advising that the best way to protect against polio is vaccination.

 

Photo Caption:  Child in Benin takes Polio vaccine, UNSDG

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News

New Rules for Turks & Caicos JPs

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, August 5, 2022 – Rules governing Justices of the Peace in the Turks and Caicos are now significantly stricter after the passing of the amendment to the Magistrates Amendment Bill in July 2022.

Despite the fact that Justices of the Peace are allowed the same powers as a magistrate previously the only requirement for their appointment was the discretion of the Governor and that they be under 65-years-old.

That power has now been transferred from the Governor to the Chief Justice.

Justices of the peace have always by law been allowed to receive complaints, sign charges and issue warrants for the apprehension of persons charged with criminal offenses. They can also issue search warrants summons and administer oaths.

Considering the potentially unchecked execution of these powers, the attorney general’s chambers lobbied for a change in the system.

“These are very wide powers and there is no framework for the supervision and regulation of the whole of justices of the peace in the Turks and Caicos Islands.”

The amendment rectified this and the Chief Justice now has the power to make binding rules and regulations governing the appointment of JPs, a code of conduct disciplinary action and orientation and periodic training for JPs.

In addition, to maintain separation of powers the governor will be stripped of the power to disallow laws made by resident magistrates. That power now belongs to the Chief Justice.

Rhondalee Braithwaite-Knowles, TCI Attorney General maintained that the amendment was short but necessary.

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Health

Young People in TCI are having sex, Rapport wants to ensure they’re doing it safe

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By Deandrea Hamilton & Dana Malcolm

Editorial Staff

 

#TurksandCaicos, August 5, 2022 – Young people in the Turks and Caicos are very sexually active and while there are no concrete statistics, the newest members of the Rapport all said “Yes” to the question about whether there is rampant sexual activity.

“As a young person I totally agree that they are having a lot of sex,” Arean Louis said.

This is particularly concerning given wider statistics point to a very young age group which is still contracting HIV/Aids.

“Caribbean statistics are showing that between the ages of 15 and 25 those have the highest amount of HIV rates.”

A five person delegation was this past  week representing the Turks and Caicos Islands at the International Aids Conference, staged in Montreal, Canada July 29 – August 2, 2022.

Young adult members of Rapport TCI all agree that youth in the TCI must be made aware of HIV and other STIs. Arean Louis, Denae Dennie and Arielle Neely spoke to Magnetic Media on their way to the International AIDS Conference.

All three agreed that our young people are having a lot of sex.

“I would say that our young people are having sec the only thing that I would say is I hope that they are letting their partners know their sexual history, their status, and that they’re being safe.” Dennie said.

Louis added, “As we talk about HIV and AIDS in the Turks and Caicos Islands we most definitely need to bring awareness to our young people because there is no set age— kids nowadays just like to experiment.”

He stressed safe sex, using protection and abstinence to maintain sexual health.

“What we aim to do is keep them safe here, we’re tired and we don’t want to see anymore STD and STI new cases in the Turks and Caicos.”

Dennie says she still thinks there is fear surrounding HIV but with education and protection, the world can get to zero new cases and it was something she was looking forward to.

The final member Arielle Neely explained that there were not enough tools and resources to educate youth.

“There are not enough tools or enough record to educate them. Our parents think they’re doing a good job by telling us don’t have sex but telling us don’t have sex isn’t enough. You have to teach us about birth control planned parenthood.”

The three members had high hopes for Rapport and stressed that they need more members to make an effective change on sexual health in the TCI.

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