Sunday, May 24, 2009

We failed them!

'Betta mi did mek her stay pon di road' - These were the words of Prudence Doeman, mother of 15-year-old Shauna-Lee Kerr as she mourned her daughter, one of the five teenagers who lost their lives in the tragic fire at the Armadale Correctional Centre in St Ann. (From today's Sunday Observer report - click on link at right to read story in full at Observer website.)

There will be a Commission of Inquiry into the incident, but the deeper inquiry must happen in the hearts of every Jamaican.

If we had a more caring society, if we had a support system for parents and children in crisis, could these girls have been rehabilitated while remaining in the bosom of their families?

This chaka-chaka approach to the biggest social problem of Jamaica - the breakdown of family - must be addressed. Until we fix that, nothing else can work.

Rest in Peace -
Ann-Marie Samuels
Nerissa Gooden
Rachel King
Kaychell Nelson
Shauna-Lee Kerr

We should have loved you more.

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