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Harassment of visitors puts tourism at risk

sherieholder, [email protected]

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Harassment of visitors on beaches continues to be a major problem as does the sale of illegal drugs in places frequented by tourists.
That’s according to president of the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA), Patricia Affonso-Dass.
And she wants to see the perpetrators facing the law courts so as to send a message that the practice will no longer be tolerated.
“In addition to the increase in crime and attacks against visitors, we again want to draw attention to the continued and increasing incidents of harassment of visitors and overt sale of drugs on our beaches and in areas such as St Lawrence Gap,” she said yesterday. 
“It is unfortunate that the actions of a few known unsavoury elements should put at risk the jobs and livelihoods of so many, and we are again calling on the National Conservation Commission, the police and the courts to aggressively enforce the existing laws related to these activities.”
The hotelier noted that in an effort to improve safety and security of visitors, the BHTA had also held training courses for security officers during which over 100 received training in several areas, and additional courses were slated for next month.
In addition, the Safety and Security Committee of the BHTA liaises with the Royal Barbados Police Force and the tourism liaison officer to ensure that all incidents against visitors in hotels or surrounding areas are recorded and actively followed up and that victims of such crimes are met and provided with regular updates on the progress of any relevant investigations. (BA)