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Concerned citizens offer crime solutions in light of recent violent crime spike in the Federation


by Eulana Weekes

St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): The frequency at which homicides had been committed between the first half of 2023 raised several questions about the best possible solutions to preventing and combating gun-related crimes in St.Kitts and Nevis.

A former parliamentarian in the Nevis Island Administration, Hensley Daniel, took to social media and proposed a plan that he believes would benefit the crime-fighting efforts.

“The continuing criminal activity demands a strong response from the government and the people. What about professional help from the Israeli Mossad, the British MI 5 and the American FBI? They have had great success in monitoring and detecting crimes. The detection rate in this small country is way too low. We can find three officers from each of these three agencies and assign them to St. Kitts and Nevis for one year to work along with ten Police and ten Army officers. Utilising the appropriate equipment and technology, they can reduce crime.  The prevention work in Education and Skills Training must be enhanced. Programmes to build social cohesion, such as Dispute Resolution and Anger Management, must be financed by public and private sector entities. We should also move to cancel all the present National Identification Cards and re-issue them using fingerprinting technology. Everybody with an ID must be fingerprinted.”

Daniel didn’t deny that the cost to implement the measures would be high but asked, “What is the cost of not doing them?”

Senior Youth Development Officer and Counselor at the Nevis Island Administration, Ms Kerdis Clarke, was also compelled to do her part in the crime-fighting effort. Clarke offered free counselling sessions for three boys in Gingerland, Nevis. 

“We will all agree that the Federation has been tested in recent months, and many of us are in search of answers. Several [people] have asked, What are they doing? My question is, What am I doing to address the antisocial behaviours of our young people? I felt compelled to take intentional steps to support our young people in meaningful ways. As such, I’m committed to offering free individual counselling sessions to three boys (16 to 18 years) who reside in Gingerland and who have been determined to have behavioural challenges. I’m also committed to working closely with the parents to strengthen the parent-child relationship. If you know of a family that can benefit from this type of support, please feel free to contact me. This is what I can do. What can you do? A little bit of support can surely go a long way,” she noted.

Also contributing to the conversation on crime-fighting measures, Reverend Ron Daniel invited 1,000 Christians to adopt the M.A.P Plan, the acronym for Mentor and Pray.

“All it takes is for 1,000  Christians to take some time out and decide to mentor one person under the age of 18 and stick with them for a minimum of 18 months,” he said.

He encouraged participants to take a child under their wings and teach him or her essential values of love, forgiveness, tolerance and the importance of knowing the word of God and living for God. 

One thousand Christians were also encouraged to pray daily for at least a period of 18 months.  Reverend Daniel emphasises the importance and impact of prayer by quoting the scripture, 2 Chronicles 7:14 “If my people who are called by name shall humble themselves and pray and seek my face and shall turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and heal their land.”

Over 13 years ago, in a written commentary, Inspector of Police Carl Greaux recommended a systematic approach to combat illegal firearms in the Federation, which could likely trickle down to the prevention of gun violence. Greaux said the first step should be “Addressing and Arresting the Root Causes”, which involves “examination of the problem, understanding the factors that contribute to gun violence, and developing and implementing interventions.” 

Statistics show that firearms are major facilitators of lethal violence in the country. Of the 16 homicides committed in the Federation between January 01 and June 06, 2023, 14 of those were committed by gun. The Government and police have noted the growth and frequency of the killings and have vowed to do more policing in hot spot communities.


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