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TALK BACK: Squatters, fire victims among hot topics

Carol Martindale

TALK BACK: Squatters, fire victims among hot topics

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It was a dizzying seven days of news this past week and our online readers didn’t miss a chance to comment, vent or debate the issues and the breaking news stories that surfaced.
Those stories ranged from the Shanique Myrie case being heard in Barbados before the Caribbean Court of Justice to the mother’s public beating of her child which went viral on social media sites, the tragedies which occurred last Sunday and the concerns raised about Barbados as a tourism destination following the shooting of two tourists.
One issue that is still being talked about is squatting. First it was the squatters at Fort George’s Heights, St Michael, then those at Rock Hall, St Philip. The Rock Hall squatters believe that since most of them have been there for almost 15 years they should have access to piped water and electricity. They also believe their status should be regularized.
This is what some readers said.
Donna P: “Let the people live, do, or let them relocate them some place else. Government needs to stop selling all the land and give the poor people somewhere to live.”
Ian Massiah: “What is really weird about the squatters is the Barbados Water Authority and Light & Power have service running to this area above the airport. Politicians do not seem to mind.”
Jenipher Ifill: “I guess they don’t care that they are squatting on an old dump.”
Troy Brunett: “Am I going mad in what I am seeing or is it that you work, earn and pay for what you want and in doing so own the right to what you paid for?”
While some readers were hard on the squatters, others sympathized with the Vault Road, St Thomas family of three, including a baby, who lost their home to fire on Friday.
Conchita Moseley: “I am confident that if a trust fund was set up for families who have met with disasters such as this one, people would respond. When children are involved in a crisis people give generously because nobody, regardless of whether they are rich or poor, like to see children suffer.”
Janie Bridge: “Glad no one was hurt. Things can be replaced, people can’t be.”
Katrina Springer: “I am real sorry for you that your house is gone but do not worry; you will get a next one soon. I’m glad that your baby wasn’t hurt in that fire.”
This coming week the eyes will be on some of our athletes as they head to The Bahamas for the Carifta Games. THE NATION’s Senior Reporter Sherrylyn A. Toppin will be there keeping our print and online readers up to date with the performances. Stay tuned.
• Carol Martindale is THE NATION’s Online Editor.