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Monthly Archives: July 2014

JAMAICA NEWSWEEKLY For the week ending July 25th, 2014

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THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
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GOVERNMENT CREATES POLICY TO REDUCE POVERTY—07/19/14
The government of Jamaica is developing a social protection policy that is meant to alleviate poverty and even eliminate from the country altogether, according to Dr. Peter Phillips, Finance Minister. The project is a partnership of the Jamaican government and the World Bank that was introduced at the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ) in St. Andrew. The plan features a combination of public and private resources, non-state agencies, and non-governmental organizations that will have direct involvement in the social protection structure,

DROUGHT IN JAMAICA GETTING WORSE, SAYS PICKERSGILL—07/20/14
Robert Pickersgill, Jamaica’s Environment Minister, has stated that the serious drought occurring on the island is getting worse, and water supply systems are already significantly below normal. The government is bringing water into farming districts by truck to alleviate the worst impacts.

FORMER POLICE OFFICER GETS SENTENCED FOR FRAUD—07/21/14
Devon Campbell, a former Jamaican police officer, received a sentence of 10 months on charges of immigration fraud. According to prosecutors, Campbell entered the United States in 2001 with a Jamaican passport stating a false name of Willmott Alvin Livingston. He lived under that name, married a U.S. citizen, attained permanent residency in the U.S. in 2004.He became a U.S. citizen in 2008 and used the fake name and illegal naturalization papers to get the police certification.

WATCHING WORLD CUP MEANT LOWER MURDER RATE—07/22/14
Criminals in Jamaica were so intent on watching the 2014 World Cup matches that the murder rate fell by 12 percent during the month-long soccer competition.

TEACHERS RECEIVE COMPUTER TABLETS IN E-LEARNING PROJECT—07/23/14
Teachers and students in Jamaica will receive 25,000 tablet computers through the Tablets in Schools Pilot Project. When the delivery of the tablets is completed, teachers will be able to receive training in seven institutions participating in the pilot phase. The tablets were provided by Digicel Jamaica.

JAMAICA DROPS IN RANKING ON HUMAN DEVELOPMENT—07/24/14
The latest Human Development Index issued by the United Nations shows that Jamaica has fallen by 11 places in the ranking and is at risk of demotion into the category of nations with medium human development. While its 96rh place rank remains in the “high human development” category, but it is only six places away from nations with the “medium human development” label.

SHAW BELIEVES TAX COLLECTION ACT AMENDMENTS ARE “UNCONSTITUTIONAL”—07/25/14
Amendments to the Tax Collection Act will provide the commissioner general of Tax Administration Jamaica with the power to place liens against personal, intellectual, and real properties that are owned by tax debtors. According to Dr. Peter Philips, finance minister, the amendments represent a response to a culture of tax evasion and tax avoidance. Audley Shaw, Opposition spokesman on finance, called the action “Gestapo-like” and also believes the amendments are in violation of the nation’s constitution.

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL CALLS FOR TRANSPARENCY IN ELLINGTON CASE—07/25/14
Amnesty International, the international watchdog organization, is calling for the Jamaican government to be fully transparent in regard to charges of human rights violations by the Jamaican Constabulary Force and the reasons Owen Ellington, former police commissioner, suddenly left his job. The refusal by Peter Bunting, Jamaica’s National Security Minister, to provide answers in the matter represents a threat to the country’s global obligations on justice, truth, and reparations for human rights violations.

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JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
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JAMAICAN SPENDS SUMMER AT ALASKA CAMP—07/19/14
Robert Rose of Jamaica comes from St. Andrews and is participating in an international exchange program sponsored by the Boy Scouts of America. Rose, 28, has been a scout leader for nine years and earned the Jamaican equivalent of an Eagle Scout. He also is a pastor with the Church of the United Brethren in Christ and volunteers as a chaplain for his local police force in Jamaica.
He holds a local conference license as a pastor with the Church of the United Brethren in Christ. He is the volunteer chaplain for the local police force.

DELAYED VISA FOR DOCTOR ANGERS JDCF—07/20/14
The opening sessions of a Jamaican health forum held in Toronto, Canada, went on without the participation of a well-known trauma expert because Canadian immigration authorities in Kingston delayed his visa to travel to the country. Dr. Hugh Wong, the head of accident and emergency medicine at Kingston Public Hospital, was ultimately allowed a visa after the intercession of letters and phone calls to Canada’s High Commission in Kingston. Kingsley Gilliamof the Jamaica Diaspora Canada Foundation the organizer of the event, was annoyed at the extra work necessary and was angry that Wong missed the beginning of the meeting.

JAMAICAN-BORN CONVICT SAVED FROM DEPORTATION FROM UK—07/21/14
The High Court in the United Kingdom ruled that a Jamaican-born man who was in prison for nine years on a murder conviction, may not be deported, Eric Errion Johnson cannot be deported to Jamaica because he faced discrimination on the basis of being an illegitimate child. Johnson was born out of wedlock, and his mother is Jamaican. He can now appeal to an immigration authority to revoke the order of deportation.

JAMAICANS IN UNITED STATES PREPARE FOR FUTURE—07/22/14
The National Association of Jamaican and Supportive Organizations (NAJASO) , which operates in the United States, shows the broad roll of the Diaspora in the world. NAJASO held a three-day conference in Washington, D. C., to discuss the changes in Jamaica’s economy and society and to find ways to modernize the organization.

JAMAICAN GANJA FEATURED AT POLICY MEETING ON DRUGS IN BUDAPEST—07/23/14
The plan by Jamaica to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana made a singular impression on delegates to the Drug Policy and Human Rights conference in Budapest, Hungary. IF marijuana is decriminalized, Jamaica will be the first of the Small Island Developing States to do so. International delegates to the conference discussed the impact of the action on international treaties, the global war on drugs, and access management control

TOURIST BOARD SETS UP IN GLASGOW—07/24/14
The Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) began its effort to spread the feeling of Jamaica throughout Glasgow, Scotland, as the Commonwealth Games begin. Starting on July 23, the 29 Private Members Club will fill the role of handling all things Jamaica. It will be open to everyone and will offer traditional Jamaican f

FIRST JAMAICAN ASSOCIATION FORMED ON STATEN ISLAND—07/25/14
Organizers on Staten Island in New York have organized the neighborhood’s first Jamaican Association. The group is planning to take immediate action in the community, focusing on unemployment, crime, and poverty among Jamaica’s population. It also plans to offer help to those who have a difficult time adjusting to American life.

THREE JAMAICANS HAVE LUNCH WITH QUEEN ELIZABETH II—07/25/14
Three Jamaicans were among those selected to lunch with Queen Elizabeth II of England at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. The Queen met with a group of some 70 athletes from competing countries at the Athletes’ Village. Richard Phillips, hurdler, Nicole Aiken-Pinnock, netballer, and Martin Lyn, president of the Amateur Swimming Association of Jamaica, were chosen to represent Jamaica at the royal feast.
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CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
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CARIBBEAN HERITAGE MONTH CELEBRATION HELD IN BROOKLYN—07/19/14

FAMOUS CRICKETEERS APPOINTED TO KEY ROLES IN CPL—07/20/14

JAPAN, CARICOM HOLD FIRST JOINT SUMMIT IN TRINIDAD—07/21/14

GROWING HEALTH CARE COSTS CONCERNING TO CARIBBEAN—07/22/14

CARIBBEAN AMERICAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE TO HONOR LEADERS—07/23/14

USAID FUND TO GIVE US$500 MILLION TO FIGHT AIDS/HIV IN CARIBBEAN—07/24/14

CARIBBEAN OVERSEAS TERRITORY HEADS MEET WITH UK PARLIAMENT REPS—07/25/14

 

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BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
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JAMAICAN ENTERTAINMENT, CULTURE TO  DRIVE TOURIST ARRIVALS—07/19/14
A summer entertainment program “Jamrock Summer – 90 Days, 90 Ways – has been launched in Montego Bay by Jamaica’s Ministry of Tourism and Entertainment. According to Damion Crawford, Minister of State in the Tourism Ministry, entertainment is the part of the culture that can be sold and can encourage visitors to come to the island on holidays.

YOUNG JAMAICANS TO BENEFIT FROM DIGITAL JOB OPPORTUNITIES—07/20/14
A loan of US$20 million for a Youth Employment in Digital & Animation Industries Project, which received approval from the World Bank’s Board of Directors, will make it possible for some 15,000 Jamaican youths to receiving training, digital work opportunities, and investments to encourage the development of digital and animation industries on the island. International firms are looking to Jamaica as an outsourcing location for animation production. The global animation industry is valued at about US220 billion annually, and Jamaica can be well positioned to participate in this market.

COMPANY IN CARIBBEAN SEEKS TO TRADEMARK MH17—07/22/14
An unknown firm in the Caribbean wants to trademark the terms “MH17” and “MH370,” the flight numbers referring to planes from Malaysia Airlines that have been involved in major tragedies. MH370 was the flight that disappeared over the Pacific Ocean and has not been found to date, while MH17 was shot down over Ukraine and crashed with no survivors.

CLOSE EXAMINATION OF VOIP BLOCK CONDUCTED BY OUR—07/23/14
Jamaica’s Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) is examining the issue of whether VoIP services may be considered illegal bypass before it decides if LIME and Digicel can continue their block on the services from their networks. Internet users utilize VoIP services to make and get free calls via mobile Internet networks. OUR is meeting with LIME and Digicel along with Consumer Affairs Commission representatives to determine if the VoIP service providers constitute a bypass action.

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ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
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JAHMIEL WILL PERFORM WITH TOP REGGAE ARTISTES AT “REGGAE UPRISING”—07/19/14
The young reggae artiste Jahmiel will perform on the same stage as some of the most famous reggae musicians in the world at the “Reggae Uprising” event on August 10, 2014, in St. Elizabeth. The event is the news and most diverse two-day roots reggae festival, and it will showcase aspects of local culture in a local national park in St. Elizabeth.

CHRONIXX PERFORMS HIT TUNE ON TONIGHT SHOW—07/23/14
Reggae artiste Chronixx performed live on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. He offered his hit single “Here Comes Trouble” on the late-night talk show. Jamaicans on the home island and around the world tuned in to watch his performance. Chronixx was one of the lead performers at Reggae Sumfest’s international night.

CONSULTANT PRAISES JAMAICA’S TALENT, BUT NOTES LACK OF INVESTMENT—07/24/14
Horace Madison, an entertainment business consultant, believes Jamaica has a considerable amount of talent, but is hindered by its lack of investment and structure. Madison was invited to the island by JAMPRO to build relationships for the investment and exportation of the creative industry in Jamaica. He believes the business sector has a role to play in developing the creative industry.

PEE KAY IN JAMAICA FOR VIDEO DUET WITH BUSY SIGNAL—07/25/14
Pee Kay, a noted hip-hop artiste from Zimbabwe, is visiting Jamaica to perform in a video with Jamaica’s Busy Signal. The track, called “Show Me Love,” was to be released in early June but has been delayed until the end of 2014. The two musicians finished shooting the video in Kingston and believe the song will appeal to audiences all over the world.

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SPORTS
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HENRY LOOKING TO BOOST BADMINTON LOCALLY WITH COMMONWEALTH GAMES—07/19/14
Jamaican Gareth Henry is returning to the Commonwealth Games hoping his participation there will boost awareness and popularity of badminton as a sport on the home island. Henry traveled to Glasgow with Garron Palmer, Ruth Williams, and sister Geordine Henry. Dr. Kingsley Ford, coach, and Ricardo Teape, manager, accompanied the team.

SPENCER KEEPS WINNING STREAK GOING—07/21/14
Jamaican Kaliese Spencer added to her winning streak in the women’s 400-meter hurdles, taking the top spot in the event at the Herculls international competition in Monaco. She ran distance in 54.09 seconds. She was the only Jamaican to win at the meet.

ALIA BREAKS 50-METER BREASTSTROKE RECORD IN GLASGOW—07/24/14
Alia Atkinson of Jamaica broke the record at the Commonwealth Games for the 50-meter breaststroke for a second time. Atkinson, 25, broke the record the first time to win her race in 30.49 seconds. She then came back to swim the distance in 30.17 seconds in the semi-final 2.

IN OREGON, JAMAICANS FIGHT COLD AND RAIN TO ADVANCE IN WORLD JUNIORS—07/25/14
Jamaican athletes fought against the cold and rainy weather in Eugene, Oregon, to advance to the next round at the World Junior Championships at Hayward Field. All four Jamaicans advanced, with Tiffany James finishing second with 54.58 seconds to qualify for the girls’ 400-meter semi-final.

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JAMAICAN JOBS
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CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY for the week ending July 25th, 2014

CARIBBEAN HERITAGE MONTH CELEBRATION HELD IN BROOKLYN—07/19/14
The 2013 Caribbean American Heritage Month in Brooklyn, New York, featured stop performers and had attendees rollicking to the music of the bands. The 2014 event celebrated its ninth year in June and was marked by the memorable performance of six-year-old Kamarley, who managed to hold his own with performers like Soca Queen Claudette “CP” Peters of Antigua, and Magaly of Panama. The child wowed the audience with his renditions of reggae and soca music.

FAMOUS CRICKETEERS APPOINTED TO KEY ROLES IN CPL—07/20/14
Sir Gary Sobers and Sir Vivian Richards, two icons of cricket from the West Indies, received appointments to major roles in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL). Sobers is considered the first all-rounder in the history of cricket and will be brand ambassador. Richards will be mentor to the Antigua Hawksbills franchise, where he was once team manager.

JAPAN, CARICOM HOLD FIRST JOINT SUMMIT IN TRINIDAD—07/21/14
CARICOM’S heads of governments will hold a meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan in Trinidad on July 28, 2014. This will be the latest in a series of summit meetings between CARICOM and its various partners from around the world. The participants will discuss sustainable growth, creation of stronger exchanges and deeper cooperation among the nations.

GROWING HEALTH CARE COSTS CONCERNING TO CARIBBEAN—07/22/14
Caribbean health care officials held a meeting in Washington, D. C. to define the major concerns among health ministers in the Caribbean region. The top concerns included rising health care costs and illness related to lifestyle. This was the first meeting of its kind since 2008 and was attended by representatives of Public Health England and the British Embassy in Washington.

CARIBBEAN AMERICAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE TO HONOR LEADERS—07/23/14
A roundtable meeting of the membership of the Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CACCI) was held to allow the members to network, learn about new business and investment options, and announce those who will be honored at the group’s pending anniversary celebration. The honorees will be those who have made major contributions to the Caribbean American community.

USAID FUND TO GIVE US$500 MILLION TO FIGHT AIDS/HIV IN CARIBBEAN—07/24/14
More than US$500 million will be provided for new programs designed to create an AIDS-free generation in the Caribbean. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is providing the funds, which will be used to support the implementation of plan for Barack Obama’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.

CARIBBEAN OVERSEAS TERRITORY HEADS MEET WITH UK PARLIAMENT REPS—07/25/14
A meeting between Caribbean overseas territory leaders (OTs) and members of Parliament in the United Kingdom is scheduled to focus on economic diversification. The heads of Caribbean OTs had a meeting to define topics of discussion, which also include stability of the environment, immigration and security, financial regulation, and good governance.

TEACHERS RECEIVE COMPUTER TABLETS IN E-LEARNING PROJECT—07/23/14
Teachers and students in Jamaica will receive 25,000 tablet computers through the Tablets in Schools Pilot Project. When the delivery of the tablets is completed, teachers will be able to receive training in seven institutions participating in the pilot phase. The tablets were provided by Digicel Jamaica.

JAMAICA DROPS IN RANKING ON HUMAN DEVELOPMENT—07/24/14
The latest Human Development Index issued by the United Nations shows that Jamaica has fallen by 11 places in the ranking and is at risk of demotion into the category of nations with medium human development. While its 96rh place rank remains in the “high human development” category, but it is only six places away from nations with the “medium human development” label.

SHAW BELIEVES TAX COLLECTION ACT AMENDMENTS ARE “UNCONSTITUTIONAL”—07/25/14
Amendments to the Tax Collection Act will provide the commissioner general of Tax Administration Jamaica with the power to place liens against personal, intellectual, and real properties that are owned by tax debtors. According to Dr. Peter Philips, finance minister, the amendments represent a response to a culture of tax evasion and tax avoidance. Audley Shaw, Opposition spokesman on finance, called the action “Gestapo-like” and also believes the amendments are in violation of the nation’s constitution.

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL CALLS FOR TRANSPARENCY IN ELLINGTON CASE—07/25/14
Amnesty International, the international watchdog organization, is calling for the Jamaican government to be fully transparent in regard to charges of human rights violations by the Jamaican Constabulary Force and the reasons Owen Ellington, former police commissioner, suddenly left his job. The refusal by Peter Bunting, Jamaica’s National Security Minister, to provide answers in the matter represents a threat to the country’s global obligations on justice, truth, and reparations for human rights violations.

 

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Fare Thee Well, My Pen: The Demise of the Pen

Photo

CreditEllen Weinstein

The pen is dead. It was murdered by the finger.

I first realized this last week when my girlfriend asked to borrow a pen to sign the back of one of those paper check things.

“Sure,” I replied, picking up my laptop bag to rummage inside. I pulled out a succession of rectangular-shaped gadgets, but there was no pen to be found.

“Hmm, maybe we have one upstairs,” I said as we both began a detective-like search for anything that resembled a vessel for ink. We scoured the home office, kitchen drawers, bedrooms, even looking through our cars. But again, no pen.

After backtracking to figure out when I last saw a pen in the house, I realized it had been more than two months.

While my home is filled with multiple laptops, smartphones, tablets and other Internet-connected devices, there isn’t a single pen to be found. No ballpoint, fountain or rollerball. No highlighter, marker or even an itty bitty nub of a pencil.

Rumors of the pen’s demise have been around for almost two decades. The PalmPilot and early tablets were supposed to finish it off, replacing it with a pen look-alike called the “stylus.” That fake plastic thing proved to be slower and more expensive, however, so the pen lived to scribble another day.

But for me, the pen has finally lost its usefulness tothe finger and the touch screens it controls.

Unlike pens, fingers don’t run out of ink, they’re free and you always have one with you. I use mine to take notes on my phone, highlight books on my Kindle and draw pictures on my iPad. I don’t have to worry about losing this work because, unlike a piece of paper, my digital notes live in perpetuity online.

Until recently, financial transactions were among the last holdouts for the pen. But these days I pay my utility bills by opening an app and signing a screen. When I go to my local coffee shop, I sign an iPad with my finger. Theory, Apple and dozens of businesses I interact with have all eliminated pens (and styluses) in lieu of a finger and a screen. And, a couple of months ago when I bought a new home, I signed every document but one (which needed a notary public) using my iPhone. Think about that: I bought an entire house on my smartphone.

While I loved pens in the past, I have to admit, it’s a lot easier not using them.

“There’s that famous quote that the best camera is the one you have with you, and in that respect, the smartphone has won out over time,” saidNaveen Selvadurai, a partner at Expa Capital and a co-founder of Foursquare. “In the same sense, the best pen is the one you have with you, and that’s your finger.”

When Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone in 2007, he described the finger as “the best pointing device in the world.” And in typical Jobsian fashion, he seemed to know that fingers would be next big thing.

“Any technology that removes a step for people is often the one that ends up winning out,” Mr. Selvadurai said.

Not surprisingly, some pen makers have seen declines in the United States, including Bic, the maker of those iconic plastic disposable pens, which said sales of pens fell slightly last year. Bic is trying to reverse the decline, starting a “Fight for Your Write” campaign this year, which the company describes as a “crusade” to underscore the importance of handwriting.

Pam Allyn, literacy expert and spokeswoman for the campaign, said writing with a pen or pencil helps children develop a sense of identity. “It gives you the power of seeing yourself reflected back at you,” she said, though she also acknowledged that writing with a digital alternative can do the same.

And for every research paper showing that pens are better for learning or memory retention, there are competing studies showing that computers are superior.

For example, a yearlong study by Dr. Pere Marquès Graells, a director of research at the University of Barcelona, found that children who used tablets in the classroom had improved understanding of topics, were more creative and more capable of independent learning.

Dr. Graells, who interviewed 2,000 students and 150 teachers for the study, said that 87 percent of teachers reported that tablets helped students learn better.

A competing study by Pam A. Mueller, a researcher at Princeton University’s psychology department, found that people who took notes using pen and paper tended to retain more information than those who used keyboards.

The problem, Ms. Mueller wrote in the paper, “The Pen Is Mightier Than the Keyboard,” is that laptop note takers have a tendency to transcribe every detail, whereas pen note takers just jot down the important information.

There is one thing that the pro-pen and pro-computer camps agree on: The pen will eventually become obsolete.

“Everyone is shifting to a digital world,” Ms. Mueller said. “There may be room for pen and paper when putting up a sign or writing a birthday card, but for note taking and work, there’s no way of reversing the current changes.”

So it is with a heavy heart that I must bid the pen adieu. But don’t fret; the finger is here to take its place. Or, to quote a proverb often used at the end of eulogies, “What the caterpillar perceives is the end, to the butterfly is just the beginning.”

 
 

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Africa: How to Make Sure the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit is on Positive Side of History

Photo: The White House Barack Obama (file photo). Photo: The White House
Barack Obama (file photo).

By Robin Renee Sanders

Washington, DC — In two weeks, we will witness a historic happening in Washington, DC, when for the first time, an American president will host African heads-of-state and government to discuss key issues impacting U.S. relations with that vibrant continent.

This event is a major step in the right direction for the United States. However, Africa hands and activists on both sides of the Atlantic and many African Leaders are asking why there will be no individual meetings with participating heads-of-states. China, France, and Japan have gotten this right. Their summits with African leaders include one-on-one meetings, even if they last only a few minutes.

I am not necessarily arguing for bilateral meetings, but what about five presidential sessions with the leaders of the west, central, east, south and north Africa regions? This option would not require an excessive amount of time (reportedly the reason for no one-on-ones). Considering the cost and time involved as these leaders travel to the United States with their (large) entourages and the respect-balance ratios at stake, shouldn’t we be able to manage five meetings?

Encouraging regional integration and cooperation has been a cornerstone of U.S. policy, and these sessions could advance the dialogue on key Summit agenda issues, including peace and security, governance, investment, and the Young Africa Leaders Initiative.

With Africa poised to become the most populous continent by 2050 and with the United States needing allies and partners on policy, business and counterterrorism, Africa is increasingly key to U.S. interests.

White House-level S. focus on Africa is welcome , and Summit themes are on target. Interactive dialogue, engagement, and partnership are the Summit’s stated goals. All good! Related events – starting with this month’s FEEEDS-Gallup-AllAfrica Forum – will address key related issues.

But we need to do something more to address Africa’s perception (not ours) of appropriateness. Thus, my suggestion to add regional meetings to the program. This could further concretize and synergize our positive rhetoric about raising the U.S.-Africa relationship in an unprecedented manner.

The meetings could each be tied to a theme – peace and security for west and/or central, given the challenges in Mali, Nigeria, Niger, and Central African Republic and related terrorism threats to U.S. national interest. East Africa discussions could focus on economic issues and perhaps energy.

The last three U.S. presidents, inclusive of President Obama, have done a tremendous job of changing the post-Cold War paradigm — creating signature initiatives –AGOAPEPFAR, the Millennium Challenge CorporationFEED the Future and YALI. I am pleased to been involved as a former U.S. diplomat with at least four of these and am proud of all the successes.

I am also pleased that this Summit is taking place – more than a decade after something similar was suggested in the AGOA legislation of 2000. My hope is for this event to be remembered in a good light. We talk about stemming views that the United States is not as serious about Africa as China, India, and newcomer Brazil. The Summit offers an opportunity to really do this.

We don’t want the footnote to be that the United States couldn’t find time to hold bilateral meetings. As I write, I remember taking part in the 2010 Nuclear Security Summit, which had about the same number of world leaders (49), where reports on the President’s schedule at that time listed 9-10 bilateral meetings, one of which I attended. However successfully the Summit plays out, the absence of heads-of-state meetings with the host president, even at the regional level, might be what is remembered most. And that would be a shame.

Calling the Summit historic should not be hyperbole! I am routing for the Summit to be remembered for all the things we did right, not for the one thing we left out. Let’s add regional meetings to the agenda to ensure that the event is a clear success.

Ambassador (Dr.) Robin Renee Sanders is CEO of FEEEDS Advocacy Initiative and FE3DS, LLC. As a former distinguished career U.S diplomat, she served as U.S. ambassador to Nigeria and the Republic of Congo. She is currently an Adjunct Professor & Public Service Scholar at Pittsburgh’s Robert Morris University, director of the U.S. Office of Songhai Farms, author of The Legendary Uli Women of Nigeria, and global advisor for the AGOA CSO Network. Follow her on Twitter @rrsafrica.

 
 

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AIDS conference attendees on downed Malaysian jet

Associated Press

Prominent AIDS researchers killed in Malaysian plane crash

Prominent AIDS researchers killed in Malaysian plane crash

SYDNEY (AP) — Researchers and activists heading to an AIDS conference in Australia were on the Malaysian jetliner shot down over Ukraine, officials said Friday, news that sparked an outpouring of grief across the scientific community.

Among the passengers was former president of the International AIDS Society Joep Lange, a well-known researcher from the Netherlands, opposition leader Bill Shorten said in Australia’s Parliament.

“There are Australians who would have planned to be at the airport tomorrow night to greet friends and family — amongst them, some of the world’s leading AIDS experts,” Shorten said. “The cost of this will be felt in many parts of the world.”

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, heading from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, crashed Thursday with 298 people on board. American intelligence authorities believe a surface-to-air missile brought down the aircraft, but it was not yet clear who fired it.

The 20th International AIDS conference starts Sunday in the Victoria state capital of Melbourne.

Chris Beyrer, president-elect of the International AIDS Society, said if reports of Lange’s death were true, “then the HIV/AIDS movement has truly lost a giant.”

Nobel laureate Dr. Francoise Barre-Sinoussi, co-discoverer of the AIDS virus and president of the International AIDS Society, paid tribute to Lange in a speech in the Australian capital, Canberra.

“Joep was a wonderful person — a great professional … but more than that, a wonderful human being,” she said. “If it is confirmed, it will be a terrible loss for all of us. I have no words, really, to try to express my sadness. I feel totally devastated.”

She later told reporters the conference would continue out of respect for the lives lost: “Because we know that it’s really what they would like us to do.”

Lange had been working on HIV since the earliest years of the epidemic, participating in clinical trials and research across the world, Barre-Sinoussi said. He had dedicated his life, she said, to “the benefit of mankind.”

Sharon Lewin, co-chair of the conference, called Lange a true renaissance man, who also had a keen interest in arts and literature.

“He was passionate about his job and passionate about global health and improving people’s lives in low-income countries,” Lewin said. “He was quite visionary actually, I think since the very early days of the epidemic and could see what the challenges were that lay ahead.”

The World Health Organization’s Geneva-based spokesman Glenn Thomas, who was en route to the conference, was also among the dead, said Christian Lindmeier, spokesman for WHO’s Western Pacific region. “Everybody’s devastated,” Lindmeier said. “It’s a real blow.”

The International AIDS Society expressed its grief over the news that several of its colleagues and friends were on board.

“At this incredibly sad and sensitive time the IAS stands with our international family and sends condolences to the loved ones of those who have been lost to this tragedy,” the group’s statement said.

Robin Weiss, an emeritus professor at University College London, said Lange’s death was comparable to that of Jonathan Mann, who led WHO’s first AIDS department — and who was killed after his flight to Geneva was sabotaged 17 years ago. Weiss noted the AIDS community has grown much larger since then, lessening the impact of any one person’s death.

“It’s now a much bigger pond,” he said. Weiss said that while identities were still being awaited for the other passengers bound for the Melbourne conference, the AIDS community was likely robust enough to bounce back. “It sounds callous but if any of us (working on HIV) are in a plane crash or have a heart attack, it’s a loss for the people who know us,” he said. “It’s a moment of great sadness, but I don’t think (Lange’s) loss alone sets us back in the fight against AIDS. The momentum to continue is still there.”

Dr. Jennifer Cohn of Doctors Without Borders said the AIDS community would honor the loss of their fellow researchers by “re-doubling (their) commitment and efforts to address the HIV pandemic,” in a statement.

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton will deliver an address at the AIDS conference, which brings together thousands of scientists and activists to discuss the latest developments in HIV and AIDS research.

Flags at government buildings across Victoria will remain at half-staff throughout the conference, the state premier said.

House of Representatives Speaker Bronwyn Bishop, who addresses the conference Monday, called for a moment of silence in parliament.

“I know there will be many empty spots” at the conferece, Bishop said. “And I think that what we’re doing is mourning with all of the world and all that had been lost. And we want to see justice but in a measured way.”

 
 

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JAMAICA NEWSWEEKLY For the week ending July 18th, 2014

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THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
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GOVERNMENT ACTION NOT POSSIBLE IN VOIP DISPUTE—07/12/14
Jamaica’s government has no way to address the concerns of consumers impacted by the bans on VoIP applications imposed by Digicel and LIME, major telecommunications services providers. There is no current legislation in place that would allow the government to counter these limits. Duane Smith, deputy spokesperson for science, ICT, and digital society development, believes there should be new legislation designed to address the activities of Internet service providers.

GOVERNMENT PLANS TO LICENSE PSYCHOLOGISTS—07/13/14
The government of Jamaica will start issuing licenses to psychologist in an attempt to resolve issues arising from the provision of psychological services by unqualified individuals. According to Dr. Kai Morgan, vice president of the Jamaican Psychological Society (JamPsych), this move will help to stop operations by “quacks” who charge high prices and offer services without having the required qualifications. Members of JamPsych can apply for licenses through the Council for Professions Supplementary to Medicine.

CULTURAL CENTER OPENS IN MONTEGO BAY—07/14/14
The people living in western Jamaica will now have the chance to enjoy cultural experiences due to the official launch of the Montego Bay Cultural Center in Sam Sharpe Square. The center, previously known as the Montego Bay Civic Center, has undergone re-development via the Tourism Enhancement Fund. It will be home to a national art gallery. The cost of the refurbishment was J$109 million.

NEW JLP WEBSITE TO REDUCE DEPENDENCE ON LARGE DONORS—07/15/14
According to Andrew Holness, Jamaica’s Opposition Leader, the expansion of social media access by the Jamaica Labor Party (JLP) is designed to reduce its dependence on a few large donors and allow ordinary Jamaicans, both locally and around the world, to take a larger role in the performance of the party. Currently, the culture of politics is funded by businessmen and large contributors, said Holness, and has not created a way for average voters to contribute to the causes or issues about which they are concerned. The JLP website will now have the capacity to handle small donations to specific causes.

PRISONS DO NOT REHABILITATE ADULTS, SAYS AUDITOR GENERAL—07/16/14
Jamaica’s Auditor General Pamela Monroe Ellis has stated that the nation’s Department of Corrections (DCS) has failed in making determinations of risk profiles and rehabilitation needs of individuals entering the correctional facilities. Additionally, she said that the DCS was unable to show that rehabilitation activities meet the needs of inmates and that there are no structured opportunities for rehabilitation offered to address the needs of mentally challenged inmates or those convicted of drug abuse or sexual offenses.

BUNTING SAYS FUNDING LOST DUE TO CONCERNS ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS—07/17/14
According to Peter Bunting, Jamaica’s portfolio minister, law enforcement agencies in Jamaica have lost funding from international sources because of alleged human rights abuses by members of the security forces. The report from the Office of the Public Defender on the security forces and their activities in Kingston in May 2010 has caused some international funders to review their support.

AGRICULTURE RECOVERING FROM RECENT NATURAL DISASTER—07/18/14
The agricultural sector in Jamaica has recovered from the impact of recent natural disasters. Banana production is up 64 percent, for example, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Fishing. Donovan Stanberry, Minister of Agriculture and Fishing, noted the production level is higher than the level registered before Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

POLICE TAKE ACTION ON HOMELESS MEN IN NEW KINGSTON—07/18/14
Police in the St. Andrew Central Division plan to meet with stakeholders and business owners to address problems associated with homeless men in the area who are “terrorizing” the new business area in New Kingston. The area requires appropriate management to address the issue, said senior superintendent Fitz Bailey, who also noted the matter is affecting businesses and creating serious concerns in the business community.

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JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
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JAMAICAN MAY BE FIRST FEMALE BISHOP OF CHURCH OF ENGLAND—07/12/14
Rose Hudson-Wilkin, who was born and raised in Montego Bay, is a contender to become one of the first female bishops in the Church of England. The Anglican Church has decided to allow female bishops after many years of debate on the issue dating back to the 1920s. Currently, Hudson-Wilkin is a chaplain to Queen Elizabeth II and the Speaker of the House of Commons. She is very prominent in the Church of England and a strong advocate of women’s right to take part at the highest level of the church’s hierarchy.

JAMAICAN MARTIAL ARTISTS TO DEFEND REPUTATION IN FLORIDA—07/13/14
Martial artists from Jamaica will defend their reputation at the International Sport Karate Association United States Open competition of 2014 in Orlando, Florida. Jamaica has sent a team of 54 fighters of different ages to the competition. In 2013, Jamaicans won a record-setting 90 medals: 29 gold medals, 30 silver and 31 bronze.

FIRST JAMAICAN BOBSLED COACH, HOWARD SILER, DIES—07/14/14
Howard Siler, the first coach of the Jamaican bobsled team and twice a United States Olympic bobsledder himself, has died at the age of 69. Siler died at his home in Florida on July 8, 2014. He is best known for bringing the sport of bobsledding to Jamaicans, who competed in the 1988 Olympic Games in Calgary, Canada. His efforts became the basis of the film “Cool Runnings.”

POETRY FEST TO FEATURE INTERNATIONALLY KNOWN JAMAICAN—07/15/14
The 2014 Jamaica Poetry Festival, which will take place in St. Andrew on August 10, will feature a performance by Jean “Binta” Breeze of Jamaica and the United Kingdom. She recently received honors from the Queen of England and is known as the “One Woman Festival.” The festival will also feature Dr. Neal Hall of the U.S., who has performed around the world.

2014 DIASPORA COMMUNITY HONORS ANNOUNCED—07/16/14
Franz Hall, Jamaica’s Consul General, announced the names of ten individuals being recognized with Diaspora Honors for 2014. These individuals received the award for outstanding contributions to the community development in South Florida. They include Victoria Mutual Building Society corporate executive, Ms. Suzette Rochester for Business Leadership; South Florida entrepreneur, Ms. Patricia M. Lee for Public Service; Dr. Fidel Goldson, Jr. for Philanthropy; educator Rupert Rhodd, PhD. for Education; attorney George Crimarco for Law and Justice; accountant and community activist, Leary Mullings for Entrepreneurship; President of Jamaica International Female Football Development, Ms. Lavern Deer for Sports Development, and Broward County student and community volunteer, Adam Azan for Youth Leadership. Lloyd Finlay of Finlay’s Shipping received a Special Community Merit Honor for his commitment to community enrichment.

BARTLETT WANTS DIASPORA TO SUPPORT DIPLOMACY—07/17/14
Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Opposition spokesman on foreign affairs, suggests the government give Jamaicans in the Diaspora special assignments to support the nation’s diplomatic staff around the world. He is not in support of a proposal to assign a seat to a representative of the Diaspora in the Senate, saying such a position cannot be sustained due to the nature of Jamaican democracy. However, he does believe the Diaspora has a diplomatic role to fill overseas with voluntary positions such as ambassadors-at-large or honorary consuls.

LONDON CEREMONY DEDICATES SITE FOR STATUE OF MARY SEACOLE—07/18/14
A dedication ceremony was held in London to recognize the site at which a statue of Mary Seacole, pioneer Jamaican nurse, will be placed at the Gardens of St. Thomas Hospital in Westminster. Lord Clive Soley, the chairman of the Mary Seacole Memorial Statute Appeal, noted that the statute will be the first one in the city dedicated to a named black woman. It will erected in 2015 in honor of the 160th anniversary of Seacole’s arrival in Crimea.

JAMAICAN SUMMER CAMP MOVES TO UNITED KINGDOM—07/18/14
The Jamaica National Building Society (JNBS) UK Resolution Project One Week Summer Camp is being made available to parents and guardians of children between 13 and 17 years of age. The program is designed to promote advocacy among younger people via photography. The project has been offered in Jamaica since 2004 in rural high schools and has trained many students in photography, photo-journalism and advocacy. In 2012, images from the project were shown in London to highlight the work of Jamaica’s rural high school students. The 2014 program in the UK will run from July 28 to August 2, 2014.
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CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
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GUYANA WINS OPENER AT 2014 CARIBBEAN PREMIER LEAGUE—07/12/14

480 KILOS OF COCAINE SEIZED IN ANTIGUA—07/1314

NYC MAYOR SIGNS LAW CREATING CITY ID FOR CARIBBEAN, OTHER IMMIGRANTS—07/14/14

NEW SPECIES OF MARINE LIFE NAMED AFTER JENNIFER LOPEZ—07/16/14

CARIBBEAN HERITAGE FETED AT GOLDEN KRUST BAKERY IN BROOKLYN—07/17/14

HEAD OF UNITED NATIONS URGES SOLUTION TO DOMINICAN CITIZENSHIP ISSUE—07/18/14

 

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BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
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PAULWELL SAYS RUSAL MAY LOSE BAUXITE LICENSES IN JAMAICA—07/12/14
Phillip Paulwell, Jamaica’s Minister of Mining and Energy, says he has lost his patience with UC Rusal, the Russian aluminum company, and may be preparing to revoke the firm’s licenses to mine at Ewarton. Paulwell told Rusal on July 1, 2014, that he would revoke the licenses for the Kirkvine and Alpart plants if they did not restart their operations in six months. The plants have been out of operation since 2009. Rusal replied that restarting the plants is impossible without time-consuming and costly modernization and equipment replacement necessary to convert them to coal or gas-firing.

CARIBBEAN’S YOUNGEST ENTREPRENEUR JUST 15 YEARS OF AGE—07/14/14
Warren Cassell Jr. , 15, has already established himself as a global entrepreneur, published author, and successful investor. Cassell is from Montserrat and has founded several companies, contributed to the Huffington Post website, and earned a first-degree black-belt in Tae Kwon Do. He was named a “Youth on the Rise” by the Montserrat Department of Youth Affairs” and also “Youth Entrepreneur of the Year” for 2014 by the Caribbean Journal. His business involvement includes media, food manufacturing, hedge funds, private equity and real estate investments.

JAMPRO CONSIDERS ANOTHER RARE METALS MINING PROPOSAL—07/16/14
Jampro, Jamaica’s investment promotion agency, is considering an offer from Nippon Light Metals of Japan, in partnership with the Jamaica Bauxite Institute. The proposal indicates the firm’s interest in extracting rare-earth metals from the island’s bauxite waste. Nippon applied in 2014 to patent its extraction process, and approval could take some three years. Nippon’s proposal involves US$500 million in investments.

BUSINESSES SHOULD MAKE USE OF SERVICES OFFERED BY GOVERNMENT—07/17/14
According to Sharon Ffolkes Abrahams, Jamaica’s State Minister for Industry, Investment and Commerce, Jamaica will need more innovative and creative entrepreneurs once the new logistics hub goes into operation. She is encouraging entrepreneurs to use the aid and services offered by the government to advance their business operations. Training and technical aid is offered by the Jamaica Business Development Corporation and other agencies, including HEART/NTA.

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ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
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DANCE4LIFE JAMAICA COMING TO KINGSTON—07/12/14
An international group of dance professionals will be providing workshops at Edna Manley School of Visual and Performing Arts, the School of Dance, and Chai Dance Studios between July 31, and August 15, 2014. The workshops will focus on teaching technique and involvement with Jamaican culture as it relates to dance. According to director Nejila Innerarity, Dance4Life is committed to offering programs that highlight the use of dance to empower, unite, and change the way people relate to one another. Dance4Life: Kingston Engaged brings professional dancers and teachers to teach students in Kingston with 25 classes per day.

EVENT TO RECOGNIZE CHINESE PIONEERS OF JAMAICAN MUSIC—07/13/14
The Tribute to the Greats Awards Show and Dance for 2014 will be held to the Chinese Benevolent Association in St. Andrew on July 26, 2014. This is the first time in many years the event has not been held at Curphey Place. The change of venue marks the event’s focus on the Chinese connection to the music of Jamaica. The show coincides with the 160th anniversary of the arrival of Chinese people to the island.

FESTIVAL QUEEN GRAND CORONATION SLATED FOR JULY 19—07/15/14
The Miss Jamaica Festival Queen Grand Coronation is scheduled for July 19, 2014, at Ranny Williams Entertainment Center in Kingston. The theme of the 2014 competition is “Jamaican Women…Shaping Our Culture and Our Nation.” Thirteen contestants will vie for the title of Miss Jamaica Festival Queen 2014. Several prizes and awards, including a $500,000 cash prize, are at stake in the competition.

JAH CURE TO RELEASE NEW ALBUM IN SEPTEMBER—07/17/14
The new album from Jah Cure, which is set to release in September 2014, features the lead single “Life We Live.” This is his sixth album. Jah Cure will perform at Reggae Sumfest on International Night. He believes that his new album represents “spiritual growth” and reflects his roles as artiste, father, husband, and producer.

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SPORTS
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BLAKE INJURED AT GLASGOW GRAND PRIX, ASHMEADE WINS—07/12/14
Jamaican champion sprinter Yohan Blake suffered a hamstring injury at the Glasgow Grand Prix, adding to a list of fitness difficulties that have followed him since 2012. The event was only his second race in the 2014 season. Blake, 24, started slow in the 100-meters Diamond League final and appeared uncomfortable at the middle of the distance. He fell to the track just as Nickel Ashmeade, fellow Jamaican team member, claimed the first prize with a time of 9.97 seconds.

JAMAICAN WOMEN WIN CARIBBEAN BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIP—07/14/14
Jamaica’s women’s basketball team defeated the Dominican Republic with a score of 51-45 at the Caribbean championships in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Shanneika Smith, guard, achieved 14 points, while Sasha Dixon, shooting guard, also scored 14 points, and Jennifer George, power forward, won 13 points. A $1 million donation by Olympic champion Usain Bolt allowed the team to raise the money necessary to participate in the tournament.

POWELL, SIMPSON ALLOWED TO RETURN TO COMPETITION—07/15/14
Appeals to a ruling related to positive tests for a banned substance filed by Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson, Jamaican sprinters, has been upheld in part by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). Both sprinters had positive results in tests conducted at Jamaica’s national trials in 2013. While an earlier ruling had suspended the athletes for 18 months from competition, the new CAS decision reduced their ineligibility period to six months, time that has already been served, and thus clearing them to compete in coming 2014 events.

ASAFA POWELL RETURNS TO TRACK—07/16/14
Asafa Powell, Jamaican sprinter, is back in competition one day after his doping ban was lowered. He competed in the 100-meter race at the Lucerne meet with a time of 10.30 seconds. He finished in third place, after Julian Foote, and Antoine Adams. Powell remains the fourth fastest man on record.

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JAMAICAN JOBS
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Visit JAMAICAN JOBS.

 

 

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CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY for the week ending July 18th, 2014

GUYANA WINS OPENER AT 2014 CARIBBEAN PREMIER LEAGUE—07/12/14
The captain of the Guyana Amazon Warriors, Denesh Ramdin, was key in the team’s victory of Antigua’s Hawksbills by two wickets in the opening match of the 2014 Caribbean Premier League. The Amazon Warriors were aided by Ramdin’s 51 from 36 deliveries at the National Stadium in Grenada, the site of the match.

480 KILOS OF COCAINE SEIZED IN ANTIGUA—07/1314
Antigua’s Office of National Drug and Money Laundering Control Policy announced the seizure of over EC$17 million in illegal drugs, and two people are scheduled to appear in court in connection with the seizure. The discovery of 480 kilos of cocaine is the largest amount taken into custody by authorities in the Caribbean in recent memory. The cocaine seizure follows the successful apprehension of 2,300 pounds of marijuana valued at EC$37 million.

NYC MAYOR SIGNS LAW CREATING CITY ID FOR CARIBBEAN, OTHER IMMIGRANTS—07/14/14
The mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio, signed into law a plan to create a municipal identification card for immigrants from the Caribbean and other countries who are now living in the city. The cards will be issued to undocumented individuals as well as to those who have other forms of identification. According to de Blasio, the new ID will bring significant benefits and allow immigrants to identify themselves to police safely.

NEW SPECIES OF MARINE LIFE NAMED AFTER JENNIFER LOPEZ—07/16/14
A new species, the Pontarachnid mite, discovered in Mona Passage off Puerto Rico’s coast, has been named for the singer Jennifer Lopez. The newly found species was discovered at an ocean depth of 70 meters, the deepest place this type of mite has ever been found. Researchers at the University of Montenegro named their discovery after Lopez because her songs and videos kept them in a “continuous good mood” while writing up their study and watching the 2014 World Cup.

CARIBBEAN HERITAGE FETED AT GOLDEN KRUST BAKERY IN BROOKLYN—07/17/14
One of the best examples of Caribbean heritage at work in a business is that of the Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery and Grill in Brooklyn, New York. Lowell Hawthorne, CEO, and his family, along with cousin Stanley Dennis have worked together for years at the business. In June, a surprise party was planned for Dennis to celebrate his 60th birthday and his work as a business visionary who help his family and friends and was instrumental in helping communities in Brooklyn to grown. Dennis has long been active in many community organizations.

HEAD OF UNITED NATIONS URGES SOLUTION TO DOMINICAN CITIZENSHIP ISSUE—07/18/14
The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, is urging lawmakers in the Dominican Republic to reach a solution to the turmoil arising from a court ruling that could make thousands of people of Haitian descent living in the Dominican Republic stateless. He has called for a humanitarian resolution of the problem. The country recently enacted a law creating a path to citizenship for thousands of migrants who came from Haiti, but the law would exclude most people of Haitian descent born in the Dominican Republic, causing them to be without a home country.

PRISONS DO NOT REHABILITATE ADULTS, SAYS AUDITOR GENERAL—07/16/14
Jamaica’s Auditor General Pamela Monroe Ellis has stated that the nation’s Department of Corrections (DCS) has failed in making determinations of risk profiles and rehabilitation needs of individuals entering the correctional facilities. Additionally, she said that the DCS was unable to show that rehabilitation activities meet the needs of inmates and that there are no structured opportunities for rehabilitation offered to address the needs of mentally challenged inmates or those convicted of drug abuse or sexual offenses.

BUNTING SAYS FUNDING LOST DUE TO CONCERNS ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS—07/17/14
According to Peter Bunting, Jamaica’s portfolio minister, law enforcement agencies in Jamaica have lost funding from international sources because of alleged human rights abuses by members of the security forces. The report from the Office of the Public Defender on the security forces and their activities in Kingston in May 2010 has caused some international funders to review their support.

AGRICULTURE RECOVERING FROM RECENT NATURAL DISASTER—07/18/14
The agricultural sector in Jamaica has recovered from the impact of recent natural disasters. Banana production is up 64 percent, for example, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Fishing. Donovan Stanberry, Minister of Agriculture and Fishing, noted the production level is higher than the level registered before Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

POLICE TAKE ACTION ON HOMELESS MEN IN NEW KINGSTON—07/18/14
Police in the St. Andrew Central Division plan to meet with stakeholders and business owners to address problems associated with homeless men in the area who are “terrorizing” the new business area in New Kingston. The area requires appropriate management to address the issue, said senior superintendent Fitz Bailey, who also noted the matter is affecting businesses and creating serious concerns in the business community.

 

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