Last night, CVM TV’s Live at Seven had a very interesting segment featuring excepts from the new Caribbean Human Development Report 2012. The new report focuses on the problem of crime and violence in the Caribbean, also the basis of the CVM segment. I am glad that a more nuanced national conversation about crime is taking root. One that focuses on facts and solutions. I agreed with many of the comments of the invited discussants.
Admittedly, it was a short segment. However, what I think would have made it an exceptional one was more specifics about the impact of the problem on our country and ‘how’ do we as a society effectively tackle it. What’s the how? Recommending repairing family structures is not the how. That’s the what. The how are the strategies and mechanisms we use to accomplish this objective.
So I am going to do a three part series (this is the first part), looking at some of the agencies involved in peace-building efforts (next week), and how they are doing it (the week after that). Let’s start with a mini situational analysis. Here are some other facts that should make all Jamaicans uncomfortable:
- In 2008, Jamaica’s homicide rate of 52.1/100,000 made us a world beater. This was far higher than both South Africa (33.8/100,000) and Columbia (33.4/100, 000) (UNODC 2011).
- The standard international definition of a war or high-intensity conflict is violence characterized by fatality rates of over 1,000/year; in Jamaica, 1,574 people were murdered in 2007 (UNDP, 2008). Continue reading