‘Too many guns’ – Felicia Browne

Human Rights Advocate, Felicia Browne, has expressed alarm at the current spate of gun violence in Saint Lucia.

Browne has noted that  young males are increasingly becoming victims of  gun and gang-related violence.  

She observed that out of 28 homicides for the year, 95% were males.

” This is critically alarming as males are becoming more vulnerable and susceptible  to violent crimes within their communities.  There is an urgent need to enact effective gun policies  and community interventions that will work as deterrents against gun violence and access to illegal guns,” the Human Rights Advocate said in a statement.

Browne has appealed to civil society and youth organisations to focus their community projects on alleviating gun violence and gang activity amongst the youth.

   According to her, the youth are asserting their powers through activities that are detrimental to their well-being, many of them are seeking guidance from the wrong individuals.

“Some of these young men and women believe that gangs are the only solutions to their problems. We must be able to craft alternatives. We as a society need to begin to face our realities and acknowledge that we have a problem with illegal guns on our streets. How can teenagers be caught  with  high-powered guns? Who are providing them with these deadly devices?  As the gun violence The city increases , and citizens, in particular young males  are fearful that their lives are at risk,” Browne observed.

Browne adds that gun violence is a human rights issue and government must do everything within its power to address this problem.

“Too many young people are dying while we fail to provide them with the tools for success. Too many of our young men are dying because we fail to provide opportunities that will obviate the need to become members of violent gangs.  Our government needs to explore how we can decrease the level of gang recruitment of young people and punish individuals who are known to recruit young children in gang-related activities,” she asserted.

She stated that young men and women should be given opportunities to grow within their fullest potential through educational and entrepreneurship training.

“How can we expect young people to be motivated about life if there are no avenues for the enhancement of their future? Our young people need to able to trust their policy makers and believe that their lives will not be cut short by the errors and omissions of those in charge. They must be given equal opportunities to work and plan for their future without the fear of violence.  We need to act and avoid the constant political rhetoric that has continued to fail our youth, including our young males,” Browne declared.

3 Comments

  1. Anonymous
    June 28, 2017 at 7:10 am

    There isn’t any law that man can come up with that can decrease the amount of fatalities that we experience by way of gun violence .this change have to come from the home circle being taught by parents …and implementing the fear and admonision of God into the lives of our young men and women boys and girls ..God has been removed from the mental capacity of our young people and the devil has taken full control of their minds what do we expect the outcome to be !!!!!!! Our young people needs Jesus that is the only solution that can amend that alarming crime rate that we are now experiencing……

  2. Anonymous
    June 28, 2017 at 8:02 am

    Gun violence has become a very troubling phenomenon throughout the Caribbean with devastating consequences to families, health care systems and the entire populace. Law enforcement must gather the necessary intelligence about the importation of guns and ‘plug the holes’. The illegal drugs trade should be destroyed as drugs and guns are twin brothers. There are too many dysfunctional homes that breed too many children with criminal propensity. Preventative measures and programs are needed especially for at risk youths. What is most disappointing though is that the present government has shown no leadership on this most vexing issue. Utterly shameful and insensitive. Twenty eight murders and counting but no National Address nor any coordinated response. That’s a National Scandal!!!!!!!!!

  3. 798798798
    June 28, 2017 at 9:49 am

    These days the emphasis is promoting women/girl’s education, equal salaries etc. with men and that’s great. May I say though that our focus should also be placed on helping the vulnerable young men that are at risk.
    Let’s stop looking at gender but consider the fact that people in general are at risk of heading in the wrong direction.

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