JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Four mobile community security and dispute resolution centres were opened in March Pen, St. Catherine, on November 26.
  • Minister of National Security, Hon. Peter Bunting, urged the residents to take “ownership” of the facilities.
  • The centres were constructed at a cost of over $25 million by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund.

Four mobile community security and dispute resolution centres were opened in March Pen, St. Catherine, on November 26, to serve the Lauriston and Shelter Rock areas.

Speaking at the handing over ceremony, Minister of National Security, Hon. Peter Bunting, urged the residents to take “ownership” of the facilities, noting that with the Security Forces maintaining law and order in the communities, development will take place, to the benefit of all.

He also called on critics to take time to analyze the crime problem, and come up with workable solutions, noting that the “cop out” of demanding resignations cannot be the solution to a problem which results from many weaknesses, including the family structures.

“It is easy if we see a spike in murders or violence, to blame the police, and call for the Commissioner’s resignation, or call for the Minister’s resignation. It is a copout, because policing alone is not going to solve the problem. The crime, in a sense, is an outcome of failures or weaknesses at a number of levels in the society, and it starts with the family,” the Minister emphasized.

“The police have an important role to play, but until a community decides that enough is enough, ‘we don’t want any more of our children murdered, we don’t want our children recruited into gangs to increase their risk of either being killed by gangs, or ending up in prison’  or as women, ‘we are not going to hide the criminals who might be our relatives, and we are not going to let them hide the guns in our homes,’ we won’t have a sustainable solution to the crime problem,” Mr. Bunting argued.

The Minister called on persons of influence and goodwill to be role models for the youth who do not know the love of parents, especially fathers.

The centres were constructed at a cost of over $25 million by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), with participation by the communities.

There are facilities for mediation, community policing, and other community activities.