RISE Saint Lucia Inc Chairman Dr. Venus Cherry has criticized the blame game relating to crime, amid a surge in gun violence.
And he has suggested that people ask themselves what their contribution is to crime-fighting.
“Every single one of us can point out and say ‘Gun violence – the problem’,” he told last week’s Police Insight programme on Choice Television.
But he asserted that no one has suggestions or solutions.
“Blame the police, blame whichever government is in power – that’s it. The police not doing enough, the government not doing enough. That’s all we do – but no solutions. What are we doing? I take stock of myself and I ask, ‘Hey, Rastaman Cherry, what are you doing about it?’ The RISE Chairman stated.
“We know who the criminals are. We know the crimes they commit most times. Some people know where they hide the weapons. Some of those criminals are well-established – their network is vast,” Cherry declared.
He explained that as a result, those criminals get information when law enforcement determines that they are suspects and when the police are coming to get them.
“All that information is out there and I’m not saying stuff I don’t know. I am saying stuff that I know because I am on the ground every day,” Cherry declared.
The RISE Chairman said he knows individuals forced to leave their communities and relocate far away because they filed crime reports and their names were leaked.
“So they had to run,” he recalled.
According to Cherry, everyone laments about crime and violence in Saint Lucia.
However, he questioned those individuals’ contribution to the fight against criminal activity.
“You can only control the amount of effort you put in,” Cherry told Police Insight.
RISE Saint Lucia Inc, which he chairs, has been reaching out to students across the country to help them resolve conflicts and stay away from crime.
The not-for-profit NGO also provides marginalized families with meals and students with electronic devices, among other initiatives.
Cherry said because people trust the organisation and recognise what it is doing, Rise Saint Lucia Inc has attracted ‘overwhelming’ local and foreign support.
“RISE is doing a lot. But, sometimes, I wonder whether we are embarking on too much, ” he said.
Nevertheless, Cherry said he has a fantastic team.
Formed in Saint Lucia in 2007, RISE is dedicated to the healthy development of people, especially youth.