“A Million Aunties”: My Review of a Novel by Alecia McKenzie


An “Auntie” occupies a unique space in Jamaican society. I have a few “nieces” and “nephews” myself, although they are not related to me in any way. I love them all. In general, Jamaican Aunties are middle-aged or older women. They usually embody certain qualities (at least, in the eyes of the young people who … More “A Million Aunties”: My Review of a Novel by Alecia McKenzie

ICYMI in Jamaica, November 14, 2020: The Breakaway Edition


Well, the past week has been, to say the least, pretty intense. The ever-evolving Eta, as expected, turned around after wreaking havoc in Central America, and passed along to the west of us this time. Our already battered and bruised island had suffered enough. So now, roads have split in two, there is a major … More ICYMI in Jamaica, November 14, 2020: The Breakaway Edition

ICYMI in Jamaica, October 13, 2020: The Kindness Edition


Well, Hurricane Delta went away (taking most of Bluefields Beach in Westmoreland away with it) and we are left to reflect, once more, on our own human fragility in the face of climate change and COVID-19. Some of us would rather pretend, however, and sip on Bacardi or whatever their favorite drink is, without a … More ICYMI in Jamaica, October 13, 2020: The Kindness Edition

Older Persons in Jamaica: COVID-19, Fierce Determination, and a Little Disco Dancing


Today, October 1, 2020, is the International Day of Older Persons. The theme (like most other themes for discussions and commemorations, these days) includes reference to the ever-present virus: Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing? According to the United Nations: “Globally, there were 703 million persons aged 65 or over in … More Older Persons in Jamaica: COVID-19, Fierce Determination, and a Little Disco Dancing

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, June 15


Today is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. It’s a rather awkward phrase to pronounce, but a very important day that focuses on an issue that is often ignored and forgotten. Two years ago, I wrote about this as a “hidden problem.” As founder of the non-governmental organization Caribbean Community of Retired Persons (CCRP) Jean Lowrie-Chin has … More World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, June 15

Jamaica Psychiatric Association Responds to INDECOM Report on Prisoners “Detained at Pleasure”


The Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) press briefing last week, as usual, highlighted the Commission’s Quarterly Report. The January – March, 2020 Report focused on Jamaicans who are “detained at pleasure” in our prisons. Persons in this category are either children found guilty of a capital offense; persons found unfit to plead by the Court; or persons … More Jamaica Psychiatric Association Responds to INDECOM Report on Prisoners “Detained at Pleasure”

A Sinking Dinghy, and a Tiny Bird: Thoughts on COVID-19


As I have observed before, coping mentally and emotionally with COVID-19 is not easy. It is as if we are frozen in time. Every evening in Jamaica, anxiety flickers as we wait for the latest test results to be released. As of this evening, we are up to 196 positives. There was a grandfather clock … More A Sinking Dinghy, and a Tiny Bird: Thoughts on COVID-19

Jamaica COVID-19 Update: 163 Cases, the Call Centres, Community Quarantine Issues


So much has been happening, and I am going to quickly paraphrase the Ministry of Health and Wellness’ latest update, as of 8:00 p.m. our time. Here goes: Jamaica now has 163 confirmed cases of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) – 20 new cases in the past 24 hours. Details on 17 cases are to … More Jamaica COVID-19 Update: 163 Cases, the Call Centres, Community Quarantine Issues