Legislators trade words on crime

Foreign Affairs Minister Senator Maxine McClean today snubbed suggestions that the Freundel Stuart administration had failed to take charge of rising gun violence in the country even as Opposition MP Kerrie Symmonds warned that the Government could not adopt “a business as usual approach” to the problem.

The two legislators traded strong views on the Sunday edition of Down to Brass Tacks, which examined solutions to the scourge.

McClean argued there was clear evidence that the police were working to arrest the problem while the Government was continuing efforts to strengthen the country’s response.

“Clearly something is happening, how many people have been apprehended and charged with murder in the last year? How many unsolved murders have they been? Those are the kinds of things that indicate that something is happening. Clearly there is intelligence that is being shared, that is being used. I cannot get into those discussions but you cannot say that there is no action happening.”


McClean, who suggested that the recent gunplay was occurring among players in the illegal drug trade, stressed that Barbados had to take a closer look at the root causes of crime, especially changing values among youth.

“The increase use of guns to settle disputes is really a pattern of what we are seeing among young people. People are using weapons to settle what I would call disputes in the areas of drug dealing.

“You have to ask yourself why is it that particularly young men, because they are ones seen losing their lives, getting injured and charged with crime, why is it that our young men are attracted to engagement in this and I don’t think it is only poverty. It is not simply a case of poverty. In my generation a lot of people did not turn to criminal activities. So one of the things we have to look at is what are the values that are being demonstrated.”

Symmonds, the St James Central MP was however adamant that the country was anxious to see a level of response that would “assuage their collective concerns that Barbados is in fact able to deal effectively with crime.

“It cannot be seen to be business as usual. I am saying to you that the positions that the country is looking at where it is and viewing government’s response strategy thus far, we get the impression that this is a business as usual situation in circumstances where it cannot be accommodated.”


Symmonds made a case for the Government to provide more training opportunities for young people so they earn their own money.

“There are literally thousand of young people out there who are leaving school unaccredited and they have to be treated as though they are being salvaged and that is my concern.

“We now need to decentralize the opportunities for people to access skills training and be able to finance a way of life for themselves in a wholesome manner after the education system has failed them,” he stressed.

39 Responses to Legislators trade words on crime

  1. Lilian Lloyd
    Lilian Lloyd September 11, 2016 at 4:35 pm


  2. Alex Alleyne September 11, 2016 at 4:36 pm

    Clear example of “the blind leading the blind”. Even the devil in hell know that the Gun crime situation in BIM need an urgent attention.
    Such as the mini-bus/ ZR problem.

  3. Ejd September 11, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    Oh no, Miss Mcclean. The police are doing a great job at solving. The government is doing diddlysquat at preventing.

  4. John Wick
    John Wick September 11, 2016 at 5:17 pm

    Maxine ya say so fa real

  5. Shawn Hooligán
    Shawn Hooligán September 11, 2016 at 5:20 pm

    So Maxine true this DLP is pure jokers

  6. Tony Webster September 11, 2016 at 5:50 pm

    Clearly, the Lady, is “concerned”, ( like all others of the Thursduh Throng), but howcum she jumps right into the leaky boat which the Attorney General (Police) and / or the P.M, (national security), ought to be captaining…and paddling?
    Beats me, and I was quite under-whelmed, at her “assurances”.

    Equally clearly, this national problem is now severe; urgently requires a better/ different policy action to remedy or ameliorate, and it will also need several ministers to collaborate, to implement. Action is needed at our ports; in the community; the homes; the economy; from our churches; external assistance; plus firm action by our security forces. Hence the point made by Kerrie Symmonds: “business as usual”… Is no longer acceptable.

    A pity the Police high command was a no-show: I wonder why.

  7. Andrew Headley
    Andrew Headley September 11, 2016 at 5:59 pm

    Facts, lack of punishment, anything goes

  8. Hunte Omar
    Hunte Omar September 11, 2016 at 6:18 pm

    Crime was here during the BLP rule. The guns and drugs were around and young women were losing their lives. It was during the BLP rule that young women were ending up in cane fields dead.I don’t think Kerrie Synmonds forget the period of the cane field murders.

    • Elvin Brome
      Elvin Brome September 11, 2016 at 8:32 pm

      And that why the blp raise the $25000.00 for haveing a gun because young girls was being murder

    • Hunte Omar
      Hunte Omar September 12, 2016 at 7:57 am

      Elvin Brome That is not the point. Don’t matter the penalty , if the root cause of crime is not tackle , it will continued despite which party is governing.

    • Hunte Omar
      Hunte Omar September 12, 2016 at 8:28 am

      John Wick What you point is?

  9. Lilian Lloyd
    Lilian Lloyd September 11, 2016 at 6:42 pm


  10. harry turnover September 11, 2016 at 6:43 pm

    Maxine McClean you clearly said that THE POLICE are solving the crime and that IS THEIR JOB…so I don’t know why ya beating ya chest,giving ya self high fives and pats on the back for.
    What the POLICE doing en got NUTTEN to do wid the Government so doan tell sensible people that because the Police solving that wunna doing something.

  11. Zeus September 11, 2016 at 6:49 pm

    Can someone tell me how to prevent crime ???????

    • harry turnover September 12, 2016 at 7:01 am

      Zeus ya got a point there….NOBODY can prevent crime.That word should have been REDUCE.

  12. H.E. L. H September 11, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    I am shure she can protect her. Self , even if she is not trained in firearms use . So she can talk all over her face !!!
    The regular joe- blow cannot do a thing for his family ? He dead , the police will try to find the culprits And a smart ass lawyer will get them off to do it all over again -repeat business for them !!

  13. Brien King
    Brien King September 11, 2016 at 9:21 pm

    High crime rate of a society has to do with utter disobedience to GOD and HIS allowance for such to occur but let’s not look at that because most people don’t even believe in GOD.
    For political points, any political party uses crime and violence as a scape goat, red or white herring, etc.
    The bottom line is, which ever government is in at the time, would have put laws in place for the law enforcement to use against such, hence, no further need for additional laws to do the same thing the present others are doing, unless a loop hole was found in any existing law, whereas, you would amend such to plug that hole.
    Other than that, all this is for political mileage. They probably get more magna points for such, who knows.

  14. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn September 11, 2016 at 9:46 pm

    Hunte Omar what you are really trying to say.,that cane field murder was taking place while the BLP was in power.Clearly I can see that you are a DLP Leave out the politics.We are dealing with an issue that affecting every one. You need to wake up and smell the coffee.Almost every day someone getting shoot by the gun that people are frightened to leave their homes.just now the American government is going to put an Advisory on Barbados,telling there citizens that Barbados is not safe.

    • Mhizz Sweetness
      Mhizz Sweetness September 11, 2016 at 10:27 pm

      u mean dey going to put an advisory again cuz dey already had 2 n it int a matter of b or d in power its a matter dat something needs to b done n d soon d b stop pointing finger n work with d d den n only den barbados might have a chance n i int care bout b nor d in just bout living happy n not having to wonder wat is going to happen whether i home or out cuz either way u getting shoot or rob or chop up so ppl need to wake up n try even harder with dey kids

    • Brien King
      Brien King September 12, 2016 at 1:04 am

      America should be giving an advisory against itself because they kill innocent people for the fun of it.
      Personally, I couldn’t care less who they give an advisory against, due to the fact that they own closet is bursting at the seams with skeletons.

    • Angus Benn
      Angus Benn September 12, 2016 at 6:19 am

      Brien King I have to kay, because I deal with tourist every day.

    • Hunte Omar
      Hunte Omar September 12, 2016 at 8:23 am

      Sorry you have misread me. The point I was making, you can’t blame any government for the crime situation. As long as the root cause of crime, the social factors driving the crime among the males, are not address, then this menace will continue. Thank God I am not afraid to leave home, nor the females i see feting at night and driving on the roads all hours of the night. Respecting the USA advisory, that is like spitting up in the air and letting it come down in you face. USA citizens are more safe in Barbados than in their Country. Such advisory in the past bore no fruit.

    • Angus Benn
      Angus Benn September 12, 2016 at 10:30 am

      But you said when the BLP was in power they were finding people in cane field dead.

    • Brien King
      Brien King September 12, 2016 at 5:40 pm

      Angus Benn , unless you become one of the latest sudden deaths victims, you will continue to work with tourists for as long as GOD allow.

      As long as disobedience to GOD is occurring, there will ALWAYS be crime and violence as a punishment.

    • Hunte Omar
      Hunte Omar September 12, 2016 at 7:29 pm

      Brien King You are so correct

    • Hunte Omar
      Hunte Omar September 12, 2016 at 7:32 pm

      The impression being given , is that the gun violence among few young males are new and the DLP is at fault. The point is don’t blame a government for people behaviour.

  15. Henderson Cheltenham
    Henderson Cheltenham September 11, 2016 at 9:55 pm

    When it was becoming a problem from the late nineties they made sport of it just to get votes

  16. eddy murray September 11, 2016 at 10:32 pm

    Zeus, you did not heard what Miss Mcclean said something happening we apprehended them and charging them. That is how we prevent crime or stop it.

  17. Zeus September 11, 2016 at 11:14 pm

    Lol is that how you prevent or control crime …..the last time I checked that was solving crime ……crime will always exist its part of human nature ….crimes are being solved does it look like that has any bearing on future crime

  18. James September 11, 2016 at 11:47 pm

    I am amazed at the number of educated Barbadians who surely have many blessings to count and believe that Goverment is solely responsible for crime prevention. Each of us has a role to play.

    • harry turnover September 12, 2016 at 6:55 am

      The late David Thompson didn’t think so when he ACCUSED the BLP for the CRIME AND VIOLENCE BACK THEN and all ah DEM AGREED !!

  19. jrsmith September 12, 2016 at 4:48 am

    If I had arrived from outer space landed in Barbados 2 days ago , listening to the news this would make me feel the problem of guns started last week. I find this so strange that in the past 2 months so many different people is crawling out of the wood work getting on the soap box about our young people and guns..

    We cannot blame the government we cannot the politicians we will take the blame ourselves ,.because our bajan people have voted for the wrong persons to manage (BARBADOS LTD).

    Bajans, lets all be honest you all cannot fail to recognize this is the most destructive government we have ever had. When last have we had and address to the nation from any ministers of the present government m, unless its from they headquarters or a church pulpit some where in Barbados..

    We then later get the best lines from the government , we must change that , we must try this , we must try that , we must change the gun laws and this goes on and on until some one else is shot to death a gain…if we really think that we have a democratic government in Barbados we all better sit up and think.. we cant even ask questions, because no one politician in government respects up that much to listen , and answer….

  20. Greengiant September 12, 2016 at 6:57 am

    He should never say, ” the education system failing our youth ” as this was the case from when he was a government minister and though advised they did absolutely nothing.

  21. Rad September 12, 2016 at 8:29 am

    If it is drugs that is at the root of crime on our shores, then you are wasting time and just making noise complaining… The people who benefit the most from the wealth from drugs will never do anything to stop it.. 🙂

    Plenty of Business here in BiM not making any significant sales out of their storefronts yet still thriving year after year.. Money laundering is basically behind it all, and you might be surprise who those people are.. that is if you are living under a rock…

    Let’s get real people, there is not a single country who is not impacted by the sales of drugs.. There is only one way to defeat that and that is for EVERY country to stop using them.. Which most likely will never happen, unless someone finds a chemist who can concoct a Trojan horse drug to eliminate all the users weeks after consumption..

    So you see now we have come full circle with the solution still being loss of life (Murder).. The Devil is a Liar isn’t he..?

  22. Bubbla September 12, 2016 at 8:47 am

    It start at home the parents cant control their children, honestly everyone caught up in this flashy big lifestyle so they got to do things to maintain it .Every citizen should do his or her best to improve the country for the better but greed and no value for human life means no matter how much get arrested nothing will change until you go after the big guys

  23. seagul September 12, 2016 at 8:48 am

    There’s no God worthy of worship who does not condemn injustice and gives courage. Courage is the great enabling virtue that allows one to be positive and think critically with an open mind. As a country I don’t think we have a genuine commitment to fight corruption…To those who think the police and the Gov’t are separate entities. Let them be reminded that the police are there to actively legislate under the Politicians. That’s why they’re called Pol-ice.

  24. Hal Austin September 12, 2016 at 1:43 pm

    It is this kind of uninformed rhetoric that has Barbados in the state it is in.
    We have the attorney general attacking the quality of Barbadian parenting, now this silly minister talking about things outside her brief.
    Why do the Barbadian public tolerate this band of idiots?

  25. Harry September 12, 2016 at 9:14 pm

    because we like it so ! A former COP started to take corrective action, dealing with the boys on the block, regular night stopping of cars checking for guns, drugs – what happened he was summoned to bay St. and told that Barbados was not a Police State – result ? corrective action stopped.

    No matter what the Politicians say they do not have the will or testicular fortitude to do the correct thing. As for Maxine …………..


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