BDF con­tin­u­ing re­lief ef­forts today

Daily Nation (Barbados) - - Front Page -

MORE AND MORE FE­MALES are com­mit­ting vi­o­lent acts of crime.

In fact, ac­cord­ing to At­tor­ney Gen­eral Adriel Brath­waite, a re­cent study has shown that com­pared to the 1980s, they were now twice as likely to be in­volved.

De­scrib­ing the de­vel­op­ment as a “wor­ri­some trend”, Brath­waite said al­though males were still the chief of­fend­ers, fe­males must also be tar­geted for in­ter­ven­tion.

“In re­cent times, we have wit­nessed a wor­ri­some trend among our fe­males. Re­search con­ducted over the past six months has iden­ti­fied that in the 1980s, boys were four times as likely as girls to be ar­rested for a vi­o­lent crime,” he said dur­ing yes­ter­day’s Na­tional Con­sul­ta­tion On Vi­o­lence at the Gym­na­sium of the Garfield Sobers Sports Com­plex.

“Today, boys are only twice as likely as girls to be ar­rested for vi­o­lent crimes. There­fore, our fe­males must also be tar­geted for in­ter­ven­tion, given that the na­ture of crime in Bar­ba­dos is rapidly chang­ing.

“Based on this re­search, it is clear that crime is a re­sult of so­cial is­sues that must be ad­dressed with so­cial in­ter­ven­tions,” he added.

De­liv­er­ing a pre­sen­ta­tion on a gang study done two years ago, se­nior re­search of­fi­cer at the Crim­i­nal Jus­tice Re­search and Plan­ning Unit, Kim Ram­say, said fe­males were now fea­tur­ing more promi­nently in gangs.

She said while most gangs were still made up pre­dom­i­nantly of males, there was a small but grow­ing per­cent­age of gangs that were fe­males.

Ram­say said dur­ing a re­cent pro­gramme at HMP Dodds, a few women had iden­ti­fied them­selves as be­ing gang mem­bers.

She added there was a per­cep­tion that fe­males played a big­ger role than be­lieved.

“They act as couri­ers, they carry the weapons and drugs, they act as look­outs, as bait by util­is­ing sex and fem­i­nine prow­ess, and they are used as re­cruiters. Some are the mas­ter­minds and man­agers as women are more ed­u­cated,” Ram­say said she was told by a law en­force­ment of­fi­cial.

Ad­di­tion­ally, she told the gath­er­ing that fe­males were in­volved in drug traf­fick­ing, pros­ti­tu­tion, smug­gling weapons into events, in­fil­trat­ing other gangs and col­lect­ing in­for­ma­tion.

She said while women were of­ten un­der­looked, they played ma­jor roles, with some of them even “call­ing the shots in some gangs”.

Ram­say said re­search had also shown there was a strong fe­male pres­ence on the blocks. ( RB) ANOTHER CON­TIN­GENT of Bar­ba­dos De­fence Force (BDF) per­son­nel will be go­ing to Do­minica today to con­tinue their re­lief and hu­man­i­tar­ian ef­forts.

So said pub­lic re­la­tions of­fi­cer Cap­tain Maria Moore, dur­ing an in­ter­view ses­sion at BDF head­quar­ters, St Ann’s Fort, yes­ter­day with soldiers who were de­ployed through­out the Caribbean to as­sist with the re­lief ef­forts af­ter the pas­sage of Hur­ri­canes Irma and Maria.

The team leaves on the HMBS Rud­yard Lewis for another twoweek de­ploy­ment and will be made up of per­son­nel pre­vi­ously de­ployed.

“We en­vis­age that we may be in Do­minica maybe un­til as far down as Fe­bru­ary next year, be­cause there is a lot of struc­tural dam­age that we need to as­sist with as part of the CARICOM force that will put its ef­forts in­tothe re­build­ing of Do­minica,” Moore said.

Dur­ing the in­ter­view, 17 soldiers from di­verse spe­cialty ar­eas shared their ex­pe­ri­ence dur­ing the mis­sions in Do­minica, Bri­tish Vir­gin Is­lands and Turks and Caicos. (LK)

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