The prime minister of St Kitts and Nevis, Dr Terrance Drew, was recently featured in a radio interview. The Winn FM hosts a regular show titled Inside the News. The theme for the July edition of the discussion was national development. Accordingly, PM Drew spoke on several issues about national development.
One of the most significant issues he discussed during the interview was Crime. The journalist interviewing the prime minister for the radio show, Jermaine Abel, initiated the conversation. He enquired the prime minister about the actions that his administration was taking up to combat Crime.
The Prime Minister then took the initiative to talk about the various concrete steps that they have been taking. Prime Minister acknowledged that the administration comes, the administration goes. They are not able to deal with the root cause. That is why this year, I travelled to Trinidad. There was a symposium on Crime and violence from a public health perspective.
This symposium seeks to deal with Crime and violence, especially in our region, at its root cause. Dr Drew recollected that he also spoke at the event. The keynote speaker was Doctor Isbin Williams, also from St Kitts and Nevis.
Talking about the measures in detail, PM Dr Terrance Drew made the following announcements. We have started to put a task force together. He added that we have to build that out some more, but we have started dealing with the root cause or causes of Crime and violence.
Dr Drew added that we recognize that Crime and violence can have a public health approach. World Bank studied it and gathered the. This is a scientific approach. Once you apply it, it will work. It is like if you have an infection, and you’re taking an antibiotic. It will work because it has scientific proof of workability, and you have gathered the data.
Dr Terrance Drew stated that we have started several initiatives to reach the root cause. The Caribbean, unfortunately, has a high level of interpersonal violence. In addition to that, we have access to guns. He also touched on the initiative that they have taken to deal with gun ownership and gun violence.
The guns mainly come from the United States of America. And I want to thank the USA for partnering with the OECS, CARICOM and us to deal with the flow of guns into the region. Notwithstanding, we have started several things. For example, we have begun the Oasys program with US aid and the Oasys program. The programme aims to deal with the youths who have issues with the justice system at an early age.
The Prime Minister questioned, How can we rehabilitate them? That program is ongoing. In addition, if you had listened to the Minister of Education, he spoke about after-school classes. He said about the scouts being back in and the community groups.
We talk about the Explorers Club. We talk about expanding the credit core. So we can have a diversion. But in addition to that, we have also created the Elevate program, which has several pillars that will deal with the root causes of Crime and violence. We are going as far as into the preschool to start dealing with it even from there.