THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
JAMAICAN POLICE TO WEAR BODY CAMERAS—08/23/16
Jamaica’s Police High Command announced that a joint initiative of the United States Embassy and the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) known as the Body-Worn Camera Project, will go into effect on August 25, 2016. The project requires police to wear body cameras during operational periods. According to INDECOM Commissioner Terrence Williams, body cameras can help in ascertaining the “truth” of a situation and provide accounts that may support or refute versions of events given by police or the public.
MORE THAN 200 JAMAICANS GET TITLE TO LAND—08/24/16
Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness presented land titles to over 200 people who received the titles via the Land Administration and Management Program (LAMP). The initiative is funded by a grant from the Development Bank of Jamaican (DBJ) and seeks to provide 1,200 titles during the 2016-2017 financial year. According to Holness, research indicates that equity in land ownership directly impacts a nation’s overall prosperity. Jamaicans received the titles at a ceremony held at Jamaica House. Holness noted that LAMP understands many issues exist with subdivisions and cultural practices concerning the way Jamaicans pass on land, and it has helped people address these issues through the Adjudication Committee. A draft bill seeking to make the Registration of Titles Cadastral Mapping and Tenure Clarification (Special Provisions) Act more culturally relevant is being finalized and will provide recognition of the ways in which land owners give, purchase, and sell land.
SPECIAL TEACHER MORTGAGES UNDER CONSIDERATION BY GOVERNMENT—08/25/16
The Jamaican government is investigating the idea of providing teachers with special mortgages in order to stem the migration of quality educators from the island. According to Ruel Reid, Minister of Education, Youth and Information, his Ministry will join with the HTA Credit Union and other lenders to make obtaining auto loans easier for teachers as well. By offering such incentives, Reid hopes to stop teacher migration away from Jamaica and to attract more talented individuals to the teaching profession.
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THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
UNITED KINGDOM, FIGHT FOR PEACE NGO AGREE TO HELP JAMAICAN YOUTH—08/22/16
The United Kingdom’s Department for International Development has made an agreement with the non-governmental organization Fight for Peace to provide help to young people in Jamaica who live in high-crime communities. The agreement involves a grant worth JS20.7 million. Pearnel Charles Jr., the Junior Minister of National Security, similar programs seeking to prevent young people from becoming involved with criminal activities will be developed as well. Fight for Peace, which is headquartered in Brazil, is open to individuals between the ages of seven and 29 who live in the Corporate Area inner-city communities. The organization uses boxing and martial arts in combination with education, employability, youth leadership and support services to help young people in the communities live up to their potential. The programs have been successful in Rio de Janeiro and London.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
ATTORNEY GENERAL IN MINNESOTA SUES JAMAICAN BUSINESS—08/23/16
The Attorney General of Minnesota, Lori Swanson, has brought suit against a business based in Jamaica, claiming that it made threats of arrest and lawsuits to Minnesotans if they did not pay debts that were not real. Global Gateway Solutions Inc., who also conducts business as First Recovery Associates, Northwest Recovery Associates, and National Recovery Associates, was sued after the Attorney General’s Office received many complaints from elderly people who said they had been bullied by calls from the firm’s agent who aggressively pursued the collection of fake debts. Under law in Minnesota, debt collectors must provide verification of a debt and inform individuals that they can dispute that debt; Global Gateway failed to do either of these things, according to the lawsuit.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
SAX GREAT FELIX “DEADLY HEADLEY” BENNETT DIES AT AGE 85—08/24/16
Felix “Deadly Headley” Bennett, famed saxophonist who played on Bob Marley’s first tune, has died at age 85. Bennett was born in Central Kingston and learned music at the Alpha Boys School. He played in several bands after leaving the school and by the early 1960s, he was established as a session musician. He belonged to the house band of producer Leslie Kong in 1962 when Robert Nesta Marley, age 16, asked Kong to record his songs, Kong produced Marley’s first song “Judge Not,” which featured Bennett on saxophone. Bennett also played on “Forward March” by Derrick Morgan and Jimmy Cliff’s “Hurricane Hattie.” During the 1960s, Bennett played on many of the best known ska and rocksteady songs of the era, including “Dancing Mood” by Delroy Wilson. He returned to Jamaica after living in Canada for some years in the 1970s, and in the 1980s, he toured and recorded with the Roots Radics Band, where he got his signature nickname. Bennett was awarded the Order of Distinction by the Jamaican government in 2005 in recognition of his contributions to Jamaican music.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
ELAINE THOMPSON SHINES AT DIAMOND LEAGUE EVENT—08/25/16
Jamaica’s double Olympic sprint champion Elaine Thompson won the 100-meter event at the Lausanne Diamond League meet. She was the first woman since American Florence Griffith Joyner to win a sprint double at the Olympics. She won her event in Lausanne in 10.78 seconds, defeating American Jenna Prandini, who clocked 11.11 seconds. Despite a mix-up at the start of the sprint, which required a re-run, Thompson was happy to achieve the 10.78-second time on the second attempt. Thompson said that the reality of being a double sprint champion at the 2016 Olympics in Rio has yet to “sink in.” She said she is the same person she was before her victories and was looking forward to returning to Jamaica to celebrate with her family and friends after running a few more races in Europe.