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Historically here, Public-Private Partnership brings first CCTV to the Turks and Caicos



#Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – August 1, 2018 – The criminal element is already shaking in its boots, Magnetic Media is told, following the reveal on Tuesday of CCTV cameras now installed across Providenciales; the Police Force and its Partners gave a media tour on Tuesday of the hub – and it was impressive. 

James Smith, Commissioner of the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police led the tour and explained that the system is both Closed Circuit Television and a joint 911 Control Room, which will be staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week with a Police Force Silver Commander.

“…able to pre-position resources; they’ll be able to put in place measures to prevent things happening or to react quickly when they do happen.  So this is a big deal for us, this is a fundamental stake change in the security of the country and of course, Provo is just the first step.  The Government has funded not only these CCTV cameras but they are going out to bid now for the second phase which will take Grand Turk into it and eventually we will get North and South Caicos as well.”

The cameras were described as a versatile technology which allows managers of the site to program, search and see minute details as they happen.

“This is a different kind of camera; it focuses on the number plate of a car…”   

The Turks and Caicos Islands Government, said the Commissioner, is working on Automatic License Plate Recognition (ALPR) software which will change how motor vehicles are numbered in the country and it will complement the CCTV system.

Stan Hartling, investor and developer of the Hartling Group which owns three resorts in Providenciales spoke on behalf of the Sponsors of the new CCTV system, he was joined by Mark Durliat, another major resort investor from Grace Bay Resorts.  The Sponsors were roused to action last year after a spate of crime which attracted negative attention to Destination Turks and Caicos.  The group, on the record, expressed grave concerned about the impact of crime on tourism and resolved to support Government and Police in the abatement of crime in a most tangible way.

“It gave me the confidence that we as a country, the core business people understand the importance of the Police and of safety in this country if we are going to be sustainable.”  Mr. Hartling, explained that an online fundraiser was an amazing feat, “I think it was that in less than seven days, we raised about $600,000 specifically to be targeted toward national crime prevention.  We got immediate response and we had great meetings with all levels of government:  Governor, Premier, Deputy Premier, Commissioner of Police.  And what became evident to us – we were all getting panicked when were at that time last year when some of the crimes were increasing and it included home invasions and some armed incidents and the initial reaction is fear and then playing the police.   And it became evident to us that that was not necessarily the issue, we have some amazing people on the Police Force that really needed some help with additional resources and it became evident that normal ways to procure those were going to be timely and longer than some of us wanted.”

The private sector group was intimately involved in the complete overhaul of the 911 center, where re-wiring and retro-fitting was undertaken.  The revamping of the center was completed in record time; under three months.

Mr. Hartling said there was also concern for the Police officers who would have to respond to crimes in progress, including to suspects who would likely be armed and dangerous.

“So part of this group has bought very high grade defense-level Taser guns and I know the training has taken place, body-cams for police officers so that they can feel that what’s happening is being recorded and it helps for evidence in court, makes people a little bit more accountable when they are around these officers… so we still have funds there, so if there is something that the Commissioner needs we can respond within four hours if we have to.”

The Governor, who heads up National Security for the Turks and Caicos called it a moment of celebration.

“Modern policing requires, I think, three key ingredients: the human factor, the technical factor and the community factor.  Without the human factor, that is, well-trained, committed police officers under effective leadership nothing will be possible. TCI benefits from having in the RTCIPF, a local police force which is increasingly on top of its game.”  His Excellency, Dr. John Freeman congratulated the Commissioner of Police, James Smith, “My thanks to them and to him.  Without the technical factor, a police force is hobbled from facing down the criminals and would-be criminals. The RTCIPF is benefitting from increased technical capacity enabling it to be fit for the task, for that – thanks –  and I readily express them, are due to TCIG without whose support and very significant budgetary allocations none of these improvements including the CCTV project would be possible.  Without the community factor, a police force can never deliver optimally and community support takes many forms. A Police Force is not separate from the local community; it is part of it and relies upon it.  The Royal Turks and Caicos Police Force needs support if it is going to deliver on public safety.”

Governor Freeman said the private sector involvement and financial contribution to the CCTV project is a demonstration of the Community supporting the Police.

“I want to acknowledge and applaud that support by the business representatives here this morning.  I hope that all of us in these islands will benefit from this new facility.  Benefit in a way that really matters, namely enhanced security and public safety.”

CCTV video from as many as 106 specific areas in Providenciales is being beamed back to the Control Room, with the video segmented into zones.  During the tour it was explained that the cameras are in a testing phase now, but are already live and recording.

The Control Room is established at the Digicel headquarters in the Turks and Caicos.

Magnetic Media is a Telly Award winning multi-media company specializing in creating compelling and socially uplifting TV and Radio broadcast programming as a means for advertising and public relations exposure for its clients.

Caribbean News

Invest Turks and Caicos’ Business Support Unit partners with the Department of Trade to deliver Export Opportunities for MSMEs Training



Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands, May 19th, 2023 – On Thursday, May 11th, 2023, Invest Turks and Caicos’ Business Support Unit (BSU); partnered with the Department of Trade, Industry, and Fair Competition to host the Export Opportunities for MSMEs Training. In attendance were nineteen business owners; who participated in the free, interactive training held at Blue Haven Resort from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm.

The training was facilitated by Ms. Lisandra Colley, Director of Trade, Industry, and Fair Competition. During the training, the participants learned the following:

  • Essentials of accessing the international market
  • Basics of exporting and the benefits of exporting for MSMEs
  • Export opportunities to access the Canadian and UK markets
  • Requirements and procedures for the exportation of goods to Canada and the UK
  • Understand how to use Canadian and UK government interactive tools to export

Commenting on the Training, Director of Trade, Lisandra Colley expressed, “Bolstered by its trade-related technical assistance pillar, the Department of Trade, Industry, and Fair Competition (DTIFC) aims to provide capacity building training and seminars to equip businesses across the TCI to fully participate in the domestic and international trading systems. The partnership between the DTIFC and Invest TCI to host the Seminar ‘Export Opportunities for MSMEs’ epitomizes our shared commitment to empower micro, small and medium-sized enterprises.

Through this collaborative effort, we provided participants with the essential knowledge and tools needed to access international markets and leverage preferential trading arrangements. By understanding the benefits of exporting, identifying potential markets, and grasping the requirements and procedures for successful export, participants are better equipped to seize opportunities in the Canadian and UK markets and worldwide.”

Anissa Adderley, Director of the Business Support Unit, also provided her feedback on the training “To strengthen the awareness of trade opportunities for MSMEs, the BSU will continue its partnership with the Department of Trade. We invite all entrepreneurs and small business owners to participate in our next collaborative training, to be held Thursday, September 12th, 2023, titled Incorporating Product Standards for Sustainable Trade.

Additionally, we welcome all businesses to take advantage of the free services offered by the Business Support Unit, namely Business Planning, Training, Counselling, Administrative Services, and MSME Programme Recipient Support. We provide the support you need to ensure your business is resilient and sustainable. Let us help you take your business to the next level.”

For more information on Invest TCI events, visit or follow us on social media at @investtci.

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Caribbean News

TCIG not calling Woman’s injury a ‘Shark Attack’



By Dana Malcolm 

Staff Writer 

#TurksandCaicos, May 25, 2023 – Where and How?  Those are the questions now arising from Wednesday’s marine incident which left a young woman without her foot. The police and one local business say it was a shark attack, another government agency, the DECR was much more vague.

In a press release around midday Thursday, the Department of Environment and Coastal Resources said, “A 22-year-old female visitor from Connecticut was severely injured while snorkeling… The matter is still under investigation by the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police Force.”

Missing from that press release any mention of or warning to be careful of sharks.

Big Blue Collective on the other hand in a statement to Magnetic Media that same day said this:

“Only two individuals were in the water, which was clear and calm, when a presumed Caribbean Reef Shark left one snorkeler with an injury due to what is known in diving circles as a case of mistaken identity,” they continued, “The calm, quick and measured response from one of our captains and office team meant that the victim was extracted from the ocean and dispatched in the ambulance in 15 minutes, saving them from a potentially life-threatening situation.”

The communications team at Big Blue Collective stressed to us that this was not to be used to characterize the TCIs waters. Both DECR and Big Blue reminded the public that these incidents are very rare.

The DECR said the incident happened in an area known as the Bone Yard Dive Site, part of the Princess National Park; a protected marine environment.

Photos of the victim’s injury show that her foot, severed completely at the ankle, was thankfully recovered whole.

The Police report had inaccuracies and was retracted last night. However, not before news media locally and abroad reported the facts as laid out by them.

The TCI Hospitals’ statement said, “The patient received immediate medical attention by our Emergency Response trauma team. The patient’s injury is considered serious and, after a period of stabilization, was transferred to a tertiary care facility for further management on that evening, Wednesday, May 24th 2023…”

Sources told our news team the nature of the injury requires a multi-agency investigation to sort out what exactly occurred in the water.

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Caribbean News

Big Blue Speaks, says Caribbean Reef Shark responsible for severed foot



By Dana Malcolm 

Staff Writer


#TurksandCaicos, May 25, 2023 – As international media houses report on the recent marine accident in Providenciales where  a young woman lost a foot, Big Blue Collective Eco Tours is attempting to set the record straight as they defend the marine life and safety reputation of the Turks and Caicos.

They say the young woman was not on a charter trip with their establishment as reported by some media houses, rather she was on a private vessel when she was mistaken for food by what they think to be a Caribbean Reef Shark.

“The extremely rare and unfortunate incident that happened yesterday afternoon, Wednesday 24th May, 2023, in the Turks & Caicos Islands, outside the reef, involving a snorkeler and a shark, occurred during a private trip. Only two individuals were in the water, which was clear and calm, when a presumed Caribbean Reef Shark left one snorkeler with an injury due to what is known in diving circles as a case of mistaken identity.”

The communications team at Big Blue spoke to Magnetic Media on May 25th, the day after the incident. They expressed concern for the victim and her family, maintaining that her safety was the first priority.

They say that it was a very rare freak incident, “The calm, quick and measured response from one of our captains and office team meant that the victim was extracted from the ocean and dispatched in the ambulance in 15 minutes, saving them from a potentially life-threatening situation. We applaud all the efforts of our team, the paramedics, and the emergency first aid responders. Our thoughts are with the victim, their family and loved ones at this time.”

Reports on Thursday explained an investigation was opened to determine how the Connecticut woman was injured; however Big Blue informs only the Police quizzed them for information on the incident.

We are told the young woman was lucid enough to get back to the boat for help when she realized she was injured.  Immediately the team on the boat, which included Big Blue employees, though it was not their charter, jumped into action, retrieving her foot and trying to staunch the bleeding from her limb.

Big Blue told us she was transferred into medical professionals’ care within minutes. Big Blue and the Department of Environment and Coastal Resources are both stressing that incidences of this nature are extremely rare in the Turks and Caicos Islands, and cannot be used to judge the swimming, snorkeling, or overall experience in the country’s waters.

In addition certain marine animals are protected by law in the Turks and Caicos, and should not be hunted or killed for sport, or any other reason without a proper license.

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