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International Women’s Day Celebrated by DCR Female Staff



Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands, 16th March 2023 – On March 8th, 2023, we celebrated International Women’s Day under the theme “Women forcing change through digital innovation and technology for gender equality and sustainable development.”. We see the female staff at the DCR treated to a brunch outside the Prison compound.

There are many other titles that are in a prison other them Prison Officers:  Hear from some of our female staff first-hand about their experiences and benefits as women working in Prison

MESHELLE JENNINGS – Our Assistant Superintendent

I am a single mother of three sons, and three grandchildren, two whom I personally raised by myself. My hobbies are traveling, playing dominoes and shopping.

My career in Law Enforcement began in 1991 as a police officer and in 2000 I transitioned as a prison officer where I’ve been for the past twenty-three years.

Joining the Prison service was not my first love for it was only a job ,  however as time passed I began to love and enjoy what I do and I decided to make a job my  career.Working in the prison service has afforded me the opportunity to acquire a wealth of experiences on the job and knowledge from attending training locally and overseas in areas of Offenders Sentenced management; Restorative Justice; Five Minutes Intervention (FMI); Protecting Society Challenges of delivering effective prison services, First Line Manager etc.

Some of the benefits of being a female prison officer are the training, teamwork and the support you need to succeed. You will be trained to handle every situation. Whatever the challenge, you’ll have the support you need from your team to make a difference every day. All of us are given the opportunities to be involved in area of our  interest and get valuable experiences as we pursue them.There are so many different roles open to a female prison officer and it is so much more than the locking and unlocking of gates at the end of the day.After joining the Prison service, I was determined to used my police training to be the best that I could be and one of my main aspirations was to work hard towards advancement in  my career.In 2010 I made history by being  promoted  as the first female Senior Officer and  in 2012, history was again made when I became the first  and only female Assistant Superintendent in the history of HM Prison TCI.

Prepping myself for a technology evolving world, I have moved from ASP of residential to ASP of Business Administration where I am trained in smart stream and troubleshooting.As a female prison officer it has given me opportunities to learn new things, and push myself in all the efforts to make advancement in leadership.

We wear many hats and encompass many skills and being a good role model is one of them. I am passionate, resilient and I enjoy my work. Achieving gender equality and being empowered as a female prison officer is my major objective, especially owing to the fact that I am employed in an institution formally dominated by males. I will leave behind a legacy of a job “Well Done.”

I love the feel of responsibility and I’m doing my best as a role model to Junior female prison officers and by passing on my experiences and knowledge to them through coaching, mentoring for their personal development and advancement in their career. There is not a day that goes by, that I am not willing to make a positive change in the lives of my colleagues and in the life of an inmate. My motto is Live life better today than yesterday for a brighter tomorrow.

LEEROSE LEWIS – Rehabilitation Unit

Working in male a dominated prison system for over seventeen years has proven to be very challenging but also very satisfying and rewarding. I have been exposed to working with individuals from different ethnicity and culture which brings on its fair share of complexities. Nonetheless, I have grown to appreciate diversity, and be more culturally aware and this assisted me to excel over the years. I joined the prison service in May 2005 when the population was an average of seventy inmates and while there were a few serious crimes, the majority were incarcerated for minor offenses. During those years, the five-minute intervention was the order of the day with inmates (I did not realize it at the time).

Over the years, I have worked in various areas of the prison and before demitting those areas, I have successfully trained officers to take up those positions. I acted as Senior Officer on several occasions from 2008 to 2013 and in 2014, I was appointed to the position of Senior Officer. For the last two years, I have overseen the newly formed Rehabilitation Department. I have been privileged to attend several training programs both locally and overseas sponsored by the department. These experiences enable me to expand my capabilities.

During my years in the Department of Correction and Rehabilitation, I have seen so many inmates pass through the system forced me to realize and get a clearer understanding of the challenges faced by individuals in society. My role is not to judge them, but rather challenge their offending behavior and give them hope through rehabilitation. Changing everyone is impossible but changing one life represents success. I am committed to effecting change daily and will continue to give my best for this noble institution, the Department of Correction and Rehabilitation.

MARCELLA WILLIAMS – Custodial Probation Unit

Disciplined, Confident, Respectful, Reliable, Dedicated, Empathetic, Patient, Considerate, Courageous.

All the adjectives above were further strengthened thus far during my time working within the Prison service. The right motivation and determination have allowed me to complete my job not only effectively but also at a high standard.

My first job in government began in 2012 when I joined Her Majesty’s Prison Service, I must admit that in the beginning I was not sure if this institution was something I can see myself settling into as a career but that thought quickly diminished after I learned of all the great opportunities that was available within the prison service. After 2 years within the service, I was promoted to Senior Prison Officer I have had the opportunity to Manage the Reception area as well as Shift leader where I was able to prove to myself and others that woman can be small but mighty in all areas.

Make No mistake working within the prison service is no walk in the park by any means, but it has been a very rewarding experience thus far. There is so much I have learned within the past 10 years and to date I must say there is so many things I have yet to acquire. One of the rewards of being a Prison Officer is the experiences that we are privy to which includes meeting interesting individuals both prisoner and Officers who come through those gates from different walks of life, some of whom simply pass through never to return as well as those that are recidivist offenders who require more rehabilitation. One of our main duties are to protect the public by keeping such persons in safe keeping until their release with hopes that they leave here better than they came. Getting to know my colleagues who come from different cultural background have all became like family.

I have been privileged to take part in various local and overseas training which allowed me to develop other skills to transition into different roles within the prison service.

During my time working within the prison, I was giving the opportunity to work and pursue higher education, management along with my colleagues were very accommodating and supportive during that period. In 2021 I received my bachelor’s degree in social work and was able to use this degree in many different areas particularly within my work environment. In April 2022 I begin working as Probation Officer within the Rehabilitation Department. Thus far this experience has been highly rewarding and I would encourage others to take on the many opportunities that are available locally which can be useful within this profession.

Personally, no other job fully prepared me for such a role as a prison officer, I will leave here feeling Fulfilled that I had the opportunity to impact if few but at least one person’s lives even if the difference is minimal.

Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body. Hebrews 13: 3


It is an honor to serve those who are most vulnerable, especially to be employed in this institution (DCR) where I am surrounded by collogues and administrative authorities collaborating in all rehabilitative efforts to get the prison’s work done. While working in the Department of Correction and Rehabilitation, I am reminded of my need to be humble as those incarcerated could easily be us or our children or those we hold in high regards. Joseph was thrown into prison for maintaining God’s principles. Moses in a moment of anger and compassion for his fellow man who was subjected to suffrage committed murder. Hence Christ require us to be kind to those who are incarcerated.

I am grateful to God for giving me the opportunity to be working in this penal institute where I can use my counselling expertise to touch the lives of human beings. While it is not possible to motivate all to change their offending behaviors, I am passionate to do all that I can to motivate inmates to be better. I am aware that all things are possible with God and I trust him to do the impossible. Hence we work together in the Department of Correction and Rehabilitation despite our many challenges to create an atmosphere where inmates are encouraged and given the skills to change their undesirable behavior and to become law-abiding citizen worthy to be reintegrated in society.

SIMONE ROWE- Prison Officer

 I started my career as a Correctional officer in Jamaica year 2014, where I served five years as a trained change agent for Juvenile delinquents.  I was later given another opportunity to be a Prison Officer in the Turks and Caicos Islands at Her Majesty Prison in 2019, which was one of my most challenging years. Despite the negativity you may hear working within DCR, I am motivated by my code of ethics “I will regard myself as a member of an important and honorable profession…I will be exemplary in my conduct at all times.’’   My job isn’t about judgment – it’s about making sure the person has safe and peaceful incarceration. I also appreciate the various opportunities to work with management and the responsibilities and challenges entrusted to me by my supervisor who knows my capabilities and can help me obtain my personal career aspirations. Training opportunities for me are a plus, especially physical and mental training.  I genuinely like the people that I work with and the camaraderie. I appreciate the sense of humor that most of us develop to survive overwhelming days. I thrive on the unspoken bond developed between us, knowing that even though we may not always agree, when the need arises, we are “one team and we work together for the common good!”

Finally, there is the camaraderie that exists amongst my teammates of Prison Officers, which equals solidarity that springs from shared attitudes, values, and lifestyles demanded by a shared profession. Friendships that develop in corrections last a lifetime. There is a support system that you don’t find in many other areas of employment.


Press Release: TCIG

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Bahamas News

Work of NAECOB critical in ensuring high standards in education, says Minister Hanna-Martin



By KATHRYN CAMPBELLBahamas Information Services
NASSAU, The Bahamas, March 29, 2023 – Over 100 schools in New Providence, public and private, and some 30 plus schools in Freeport have been inspected by The National Accreditation and Equivalency Council (NAECOB) to ensure high quality standards for the delivery of education.
“We will cover every island, every cay in this country to make certain that the facilities that we send our children to are adequate, conducive for learning, safe and sound for education,” said Thelma Grimes, chairperson, NAECOB.
“We are going to head to Cat Island and all the others before June.This is our announced visit. They [schools] have a chance to get things fixed that are not finished and [afterwards] we will have the unannounced.”
The Council informed the media of its progress during a briefing Monday, March 20, 2023 at its headquarters, Tonique Williams-Darling Highway.
Howard Newbold, Inspector and Council Member explained that the council’s seven inspectors are tasked with visiting every site or virtual space operating the following: primary/secondary schools, private/secondary, post-secondary, recognized, training, allied health and business institutions among others.
 Mr. Newbold said inspections include an examination of:
 -Safety and security standards-Human security which begins at the entrance to the property’-Physical security: safety mechanisms including smoke detectors, fire alarms and extinguishers (service date verification, and evacuation plan)-Primary grounds, playground equipment, swing sets and slides-Curriculum-Information management system (student records, staff schedules, registration certificate with NAECOB, business license, photos of the national leaders etc.)
The Hon. Glenys Hanna-Martin, Minister of Education and Technical and Vocational Institute thanked NAECOB for their efforts. She described their work as “critical” and a part of an overall national thrust to ensure that the quality of education in the country is at a high standard.“We’re the Ministry of Education and they’re our schools. We are accountable to NAECOB. They ensure that what is happening on the campuses throughout the nation meets the physical standards and the qualitative standards of education. You would have heard classroom size and teacher/student ratio. We may have challenges, and we do at the Ministry of Education but when these issues are brought to our attention we are obliged and compelled to seek resolution to ensure that the standards are met.
“This is a quality assurance measure for the Ministry itself and our schools to ensure that public and private and public schools meet these standards. We value that. Because the objective of the Ministry is to ensure that we meet the standards so that our young people who enter these institutions are afforded the best opportunity possible.
 “Education is a cultural value; a norm. We submit ourselves to the work of NAECOB to ensuring what happens is done at least to make the acceptable standards of the delivery of education in our schools,” she said.
Cassia Minnis, registration officer, said “registration” certifies that a local educational institution/provider has met the criteria to offer an educational service in The Bahamas as outlined in the Education Act. She said it is mandatory that all educational institutions/provider offering/proposing to offer an educational service in the Bahamas must be registered according to the NAECOB Act and the Education Act.
 She said NAECOB is aware of “small” schools operating within residential homes and warned that this is in contravention of the law.
She encouraged the public to view listings of all registered institutions on the website at
NAECOB is responsible for registering and accrediting primary schools, secondary schools, post-secondary schools, and any institution that offers training in The Bahamas.

BIS Photos/Mark Ford

Header: Seated at the table, from left: – Lorraine Armbrister, Permanent Secretary; Minister Glenys Hanna-Martin; Dominique McCartney Russell, Acting Director; Cassia Minnis, Registration Officer; Thelma Grimes, Council Chairperson; Howard Newbold, Inspector, Council Member; Shena Williams, Council and Inspector; Dorothy Anderson, Inspector; T. Nicola McKay, Deputy Chairperson;  (seated behind) Willard Barr, Council and Inspector.

1st insert: Thelma Grimes, Council Chairperson

2nd insert: Howard Newbold, Inspector and Council Member

3rd insert: The Hon. Glenys Hanna-Martin, Minister of Education and Technical and Vocational Training

4th insert: Cassia Minnis, Registration Officer

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Bahamas News

Bahamas Golden Jubilee Events Announced, Celebrations Across 33 Islands & Cays



#TheBahamas, March 27, 2023 – As the 50th anniversary of our nation’s independence approaches, Bahamians everywhere are teeming with excitement and expectancy around the year-long celebrations set by The National Independence Secretariat.

Yesterday, the Prime Minister joined H.E Leslia Miller Brice, Chair of The National Independence Secretariat to unveil the Calendar of Events for the 50th Independence celebrations.

The calendar comprises a host of events, initiatives and recommendations for celebrations throughout all 33 islands of The Bahamas.

At this jubilant occasion the PM stated, “Celebrating independence is about acknowledging the greatness around us, the greatness within us, and the greatness ahead of us.

We are Bahamians. That identity is special.”

View the newly released calendar of events here:…

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Caribbean News

JAMAICA: 12,362 Seniors Registered Under New Social Pension Programme



#Kingston, March 28, 2023 – There are currently 12,362 seniors registered under the Government’s new Social Pension Programme.

Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Karl Samuda, made the disclosure during the sitting of the Standing Finance Committee of the House on March 2, at Gordon House.

The initiative targets all Jamaican citizens 75 years and older who are not currently in receipt of a pension (overseas or local) or any other retirement, old-age or disability benefit or regular income, and are not living in a government institutionalised care facility.

“We are evaluating the manner in which we qualify persons to go on the programme. This is a discussion we will have to have, as some people fall through the cracks simply because they might have a refrigerator, or they might be lucky enough to have a television at home,” Mr. Samuda said.

“The direction in which we are heading, to have those things, does not move you from poverty to prosperity. So, the Government has an obligation to do everything possible to improve their quality of life, and so we will be looking at that,” the Minister added.

Mr. Samuda said between March 2022 and January 2023, the programme disbursed $446 million.

To register for the social pension programme, persons may visit any of the Ministry’s parish offices islandwide.

They will be required to complete a social pension application form, accompanied by their Tax Registration Number (TRN), National Insurance Scheme (NIS) card, and proof of age in the form of a birth certificate or a valid passport.

They should also take along a valid identification (ID), such as a driver’s licence, passport or voter’s ID, proof of bank account and any other document that may be required to process the application, for example, proof of citizenship.

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