How many robberies, shootings, murders in the last 6 months? We’ve lost count – but Cruise Critic is paying attention.
With so many shootings and murders in the last year and the incredible rise in robberies, drive-by shootings and murders in the last few months, we’d have thought that Police Commissioner Dottin and the Royal Barbados Police Force would already be in the middle of some concerted efforts to stop the bloodshed and make it safe for folks to attend local football matches again.
In the wake of two more shot dead in separate incidents on the weekend, The Nation called up Commissioner Dottin to politely ask “What the hell is happening to our country and are the police going to do about it?”
Dottin’s answer was stunning for its lack of content, urgency or real action.
Commissioner Dottin’s response was the same one he gave last year when asked the same questions. After saying all the usual buzz words “meetings, concern, intense discussions, strategies, medium term solutions”, the Commissioner said he “didn’t want to reveal too much” and that “the full matter would be addressed at a Press Conference this week with media personnel.”
Hmmmm… We guess Commissioner Dottin is still working up that plan and medium term solution. (Well, take your time, Commissioner Dottin. No urgency, everyting be just fine, fine, fine ’bout hey!)
Let us provide a short summary of the situation for our readers…
- After months of increasing gun violence and deaths, the police do not currently have any new tactics or strategies in place.
- After months of increasing gun violence and deaths, the DLP government has not increased the funding or capabilities of the Royal Barbados Police Force.
Major Cruise Ship travel forum concerned about Barbados
We’ve said time and time again that the Royal Barbados Police Force are the primary guardians of our tourism based economy. Even offshore banking is heavily dependent upon our now tarnished reputation as a safe destination for tourists.
The outside world is starting to notice the change in Barbados. The world’s largest travel discussion forum, TripAdvisor, has been discussing concerns with Barbados for several years. Now we see that a major Cruising website is discussing Barbados and asking about tourist safety.
CruiseCritic commenter OldStubbleJumper from Alberta, Canada currently says..
“I know that there is crime no matter where you go in the world but I was surprised to read about this sort of thing happening to this extent in Barbados. I thought after the murder of Canadian tourist Terry Schwarzfeld back in Feb of 2009, that the Bajan Police had tightened things up regarding tourist safety.”
…from the Cruise Critic travel forum Looking for thoughts regarding recent criminal events
Successive governments have starved our police to death
The RBPF organisation is over 100 officers short, under-trained, under-paid and rapidly becoming incapable of keeping a lid on the boiling criminal pot. To be fair to Commissioner Dottin, he (and his successor) have been placed in a “no-win” situation by the politicians who would rather borrow hundreds of millions of dollars to host failed cricket parties than to maintain the basic infrastructure of our society.
The lack of attention being paid to the Royal Barbados Police Force is starting to directly threaten our tourism-based economy. This is the legacy of the previous BLP government, but the DLP is entering into their fourth year in power and it’s their pitch now.
Prime Minister Stuart… all the fine politician words you can muster on tourist safety mean nothing. What are you going to do about it?