#Providenciales, November 5, 2018 – Turks and Caicos – The shocking level of violence and crime within in the past 90 days turned recent house of assembly meeting into a session bemoaning the damaging effects of crime.
Among those lamenting on the gun violence and offering condolences following the eighth murder in Grand Turk on October 27, 2018 was Member from the Bight, Porsha Smith.
“The gun violence in the Turks and Caicos is really beginning to give me a sore tummy and I just want to appeal to some young people who hopefully are listening, whom I hope are listening. Back in our day it used to be stones and sticks, and I don’t even want to resort to that but for those persons who are imposing it upon you walk away from it and report it; don’t take it up, it ends lives, it destroys families and I just want to appeal to them this morning that that is not the way to go, there is always a better way to work out a conflict,” said the Member during the opening of the meeting on Monday October 29, 2018.
Hon Porsha Smith was not alone in her concern as from the Member for South Caicos, there came a call for individuals to stop burning abandoned buildings, to cooperate with Police in their investigations of the alleged cases of arson, for the Border Control Minister to look into reports of strange vessels anchoring off South Caicos and for the Police to bring a stronger presence on the island, considered the fishing capital of the country.
“In terms of law and order, we need to see more of the police, we need to see more visibility more signs of the police on the streets of South Caicos. The people are asking for it and the people are asking for that matter be looked into,” expressed Hon Ruth Blackman who directed a special request from her constituents to the Premier and the Governor, among the leaders who comprise the National Security Council.
The Governor’s appointed member, Hon Temard Butterfield steered his remarks to country, civic and church leaders as he asked that more keen attention be paid to the plight of the youth and ex-offenders as they aim to re-insert themselves into regular life after prison.
“I believe that the programs that we have in place right now – not knocking them to say they are not effective – but we need to revisit them to ensure that they are carrying out or doing the right things that we established it for. I am saying this in particular towards our juveniles, I do not believe we are paying keen attention to them and we are not paying keen attention to those who have left prison and are now trying to fit into their communities.”
Butterfield added that, “I have had the opportunity to sit with them under the tree and they are expressing concerns… It is important that we pay keen attention to our young people.”