JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Ministry of National Security is collaborating with the National Council on Drug Abuse (NCDA), and other local stakeholders to establish an Early Warning System (EWS) on Drugs.
  • The EWS is a multidisciplinary network incorporating several organisations and personnel directly or indirectly involved in work to curtail drug abuse and illicit trafficking.
  • These include Ministry agencies and organisations such as the Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Narcotics Division, the Jamaica Crime Observatory and the Institute of Forensic Science and Legal Medicine.

The Ministry of National Security is collaborating with the National Council on Drug Abuse (NCDA), and other local stakeholders to establish an Early Warning System (EWS) on Drugs.

The EWS is a multidisciplinary network incorporating several organisations and personnel directly or indirectly involved in work to curtail drug abuse and illicit trafficking.

These include Ministry agencies and organisations such as the Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Narcotics Division, the Jamaica Crime Observatory and the Institute of Forensic Science and Legal Medicine.

Other stakeholders include the Jamaica Customs Agency, and Ministry of Health and Wellness, along with drug treatment specialists and local hospitals.

Chief Technical Director in the Ministry of National Security, Rohan Richards, said a multi-stakeholder effort is needed as the Government continues efforts to stem the supply of drugs.

“The Ministry is pleased to be part of this very important initiative to develop an EWS, as it can only serve to strengthen Jamaica’s efforts to address the drug situation. Our geographical position and the growing association between drugs and crime necessitate a collaborative approach to tackling the issues that face us,” he said.

Mr Richards noted that the Government’s contribution to interventions to curtail global drug trafficking is being constantly monitored and evaluated by international organisations.

“The International Narcotics Control Board recently recognised the efforts of the Government in the area of drug supply reduction, and urged Jamaica to continue investing in countering drug trafficking,” he added.

The EWS is designed to identify early events that pose a threat to public health and security regarding new psychoactive substances (NPS) or “emerging drugs”, and facilitate the rapid exchange of information.

Jamaica, along with other Caribbean countries, is a part of several international agreements and mechanisms designed to encourage countries to develop Early Warning Systems to handle the emergence of NPS and other substance-related threats in their territories.

These agreements include the Hemispheric Drug Strategy (2018-2021) and the corresponding Plan of Action of the Organization of American States (OAS) Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD).