“There is no freedom where violence exists”: Emancipation Day 2021 Message from the Prime Minister of Jamaica

As I mentioned in my last news update, I found this year’s Emancipation Day message from Prime Minister Andrew Holness hit the right note. It is very well written, weaving in the legacy of violence from slavery days and looking at the dire situation our society finds itself in now. While noting that violence “in … More “There is no freedom where violence exists”: Emancipation Day 2021 Message from the Prime Minister of Jamaica

Jamaica Update, August 3, 2021: Andrew pleas for peace, Elaine flies down the track, and everyone must get vaxxed

These are tense times. While most of Jamaica has been glued to the Olympics track events – obviously, our forte – the number of COVID-19 cases has been accumulating rapidly. New cases are now in three digits daily, and so are hospital admissions. It is alarming, but what’s happening in Tokyo has provided a welcome … More Jamaica Update, August 3, 2021: Andrew pleas for peace, Elaine flies down the track, and everyone must get vaxxed

“Get di jook, man!” More vaccines have arrived in Kingston, Jamaica.

This afternoon, Minister of Health and Wellness Christopher Tufton tweeted footage of a British Airways plane taxiing on the runway at the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston with 300,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine. Not only Minister Tufton, but Prime Minister Andrew Holness and Foreign Affairs Minister Senator Kamina Johnson Smith were there. The … More “Get di jook, man!” More vaccines have arrived in Kingston, Jamaica.

Jamaica Update, July 27, 2021: Insults hurled, apologies not proffered, and COVID-19 fraying nerves

The problem-plagued Olympic Games in Tokyo finally got under way, and has proved a helpful distraction for Jamaicans fretting about COVID-19 and everything else. And we had some soothing rain – although it has been a contentious week, with insults flying here, there, and everywhere. Oh, and on a personal note…our roof is still leaking. … More Jamaica Update, July 27, 2021: Insults hurled, apologies not proffered, and COVID-19 fraying nerves

UNICEF renews call for ban on corporal punishment in Jamaica

A child is just a child. Not an adult, but an adult in the making. How then, does a small human being (who has not yet worked things out for him/herself) deserve to be shouted at, beaten, slapped and kicked into submission, in the name of so-called “discipline”? That small child deserves love, nurturing, protection … More UNICEF renews call for ban on corporal punishment in Jamaica

Jamaica Update, July 19, 2021: An abandoned bicycle, a lifeboat, and a bulk resignation letter

It has been two weeks since I wrote my last update. However, I will try to ensure there is no “stale” news here. I have been what millennials would call “super busy” – with a bumper crop of mangoes, and the Caribbean Tree Planting Week (read more here!) We are also living in some kind … More Jamaica Update, July 19, 2021: An abandoned bicycle, a lifeboat, and a bulk resignation letter

Jamaica Update, July 5, 2021: Elsa swamps us, Mindi stands firm, and Tashekia meets an untimely death

What a week of upheaval and apprehension as Tropical Storm Elsa approached, seemingly setting her sights on us. In the end, she squeezed between our island and Hispaniola, dragging a huge bag of rain along with her. And as you know, Jamaica has just “reopened” and the Delta variant is on the horizon (or quite … More Jamaica Update, July 5, 2021: Elsa swamps us, Mindi stands firm, and Tashekia meets an untimely death

A strictly security-focused approach to crime prevention is costly, ineffective and paves the way for human rights violations

Just a couple of days ago, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said, frowning heavily as he spoke at the opening of a new police station in his own constituency of Olympic Gardens, Kingston: There is no doubt that our use of States of Public Emergency has worked to reduce murders and shootings where ever they have … More A strictly security-focused approach to crime prevention is costly, ineffective and paves the way for human rights violations

Streets for Life: UN Global Road Safety Week kicks off with a plea for lower speeds

For People and Planet. The theme of the United Nations’ sixth Global Road Safety Week is #StreetsforLife. The week started today (May 17) and will continue until Sunday, May 23. The week also represents the launch of a new Decade of Action for Road Safety to achieve the Global Goals. Do watch the official launch … More Streets for Life: UN Global Road Safety Week kicks off with a plea for lower speeds

Fairness and equity in access to the COVID-19 vaccine in Jamaica

We are learning a great deal about the COVID-19 vaccine. As I detailed in a Global Voices post this week, there was quite a bit of excitement when Jamaica’s very first batch of vaccine arrived on Monday (March 8). Prime Minister Andrew Holness stressed at a press briefing that evening that vaccinations would take place … More Fairness and equity in access to the COVID-19 vaccine in Jamaica