St Kitts and Nevis: St Kitts and Nevis Prime Minister Dr Terrance Drew addressed the common issue of crime and violence at the Regional Symposium in Trinidad and Tobago. He said, “Violence as a Public Health Issue: The Crime Challenge”. The address of Prime Minister Drew was attended by many leaders from all over the Caribbean region on April 17.
The Prime Minister and CARICOM Lead – Health & Human Development both were grateful in order to get a chance to speak about the issue of youth violence. In his address, he also mentions that in 1996 World Health Organisation (WHO) noted in their report that violence was a significant issue, and then in 2002, they again launched a report in which wrote that gangs and a local supply of guns and drugs are a possible mixture, raising the likelihood of youth violence.
PM Drew also emphasized that St Kitts and Nevis already accepted this formula, “Gangs + Guns + Drugs =gang violence. PM Drew also stated It is clearly visible that we are already working on the risk factors; the characteristics of victims & perpetrators; and the impacts on the individual, family, country, and region.
PM Terrance Drew believes that public health and security experts can generate maps of violence hotspots as they know the geographics and demographics of clusters. There are graphs of incidence vs time which show a series of Epidemiological Curves.
Dr Drew adds that violence in the Caribbean is increasing daily, and it seems to be well-characterized as a public health issue with alarming social and economic impacts.
Moreover, St Kitts and Nevis are committed to tracking and tracing youth experiencing toxic exposure or at high risk.
He concludes his address by saying, “If the political will is there, the governments together can solve anything,” and added that the Caribbean has a proud track record of solving or limiting major public health issues via solid, evidence-guided intervention programs.”