Barbadians will be talking crime and violence today.
Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite has issued an invitation to all stakeholders to come out and participate in the discussions to find solutions to the spiralling crime situation which has plunged Barbados in a state of fear for the past eight months.
The event comes off at the Gymnasium of the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex and is expected to draw input from the church, community groups, the police and other groups from 8:30 a.m.
“What worked [in the past] may not work [now]; we need to re-evaluate what works and canvass all ideas as the [ordinary citizen] may have ideas [the scholars and experts] do not,” said Brathwaite.
“We will never eliminate crime but we can try our best to save as many of our youth as possible from criminal activity,” said the Government’s top legal adviser as he spoke to the media after a presentation of cricket gear to Hilda Skeene Primary School in St Philip yesterday morning.
Despite 27 murders recorded so far for the year, 19 of which were gun-related, Brathwaite praised police officers for their efforts in bringing violent crime under control, especially after a bloody summer that saw five murders a month in June, July and August.
This heightened police vigilance was underscored as the force on Monday seized four firearms, two of which were high-powered weapons; a quantity of ammunition; cocaine and cannabis; a sum of money and a piece of body armour. The finds were made by members of the anti-gun unit during an operation in Halls Road, St Michael. Police said a man was assisting them in investigations.
“The guys (law enforcement) are working around the clock to rid our shores of as many firearms as possible. We can only hope this period will continue and we will not let up on our efforts to ensure Barbadians feel safe, as they should,” Brathwaite said.
Note: An earlier version of this article quoted the Attorney General’s statement that he wished “to invite as many members of the public as possible” to today’s session on crime and violence. However, the session is specifically for invited stakeholders.