Bun and cheese

It is Good Friday, and in Jamaica this means (among many other more substantial, religious things) bun and cheese. The bun is sort of like Christmas cake in log form and the cheese is a bright orange concoction packaged in a tin. This combination is a big deal. All yesterday, I kept hearing people asking one another if they had had some bun and cheese yet. Even the guys on the corner washing…

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Happy Easter!

This picture was taken in small-town Florida. The streets here in Kingston are quiet as it seems most people have gone country for the long weekend. Enjoy your day.

Happy Easter!

This picture was taken in small-town Florida. The streets here in Kingston are quiet as it seems most people have gone country for the long weekend. Enjoy your day.

INDECOM reports 47.3 per cent decline in “security-forces related” fatalities

INDECOM reports 47.3 per cent decline in “security-forces related” fatalities

Yesterday I wrote about the United Nations’ report on global homicide rates. Specific to Jamaica, the report found a 35 per cent decrease in murders since 2009. This is good news, taken at face value. However, as a reader pointed out, this rate does not reflect “extra-judicial” killings. Nor does it reflect unreported deaths or missing people.

But back to “extrajudicial killings”. INDECOM (the…

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Jamaica’s homicide rate down by 35 per cent since 2009

Jamaica’s homicide rate down by 35 per cent since 2009

437,000 human beings were killed by a fellow human being in 2012, according to the United Nations Global Study on Homicide 2013.

Of these homicides, 37 per cent occurred in the Americas. Of the top ten countries with the highest homicide rates, Jamaica ranks 6th at 39.3 per 100,000 people, which is an improvement from 3rd place a couple of years ago. The decrease in Jamaica is being attributed…

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Only 1 in 10 Jamaicans reporting child abuse and/or neglect

Only 1 in 10 Jamaicans reporting child abuse and/or neglect

Too many children are suffering in silence. A recent survey from the Office of the Children’s Registry and Unicef reveals that only one in 10 Jamaicans report suspected cases of child abuse.

The survey found that while 76 percent of professionals who work closely with children have reported cases of abuse, only 30 percent of children and 11 percent of adults interviewed, have ever made reports.…

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Birthday celebrations last night. The cakes were home-made, one chocolate and one vanilla, with the inside coloured red, green and yellow. And it said “One love”. Enough said. Enjoy your day.

“One love” cake Birthday celebrations last night. The cakes were home-made, one chocolate and one vanilla, with the inside coloured red, green and yellow.

Friday fruit

Friday fruit from a friend. Plantain, banana, tahiti apple, regular apple and naseberry. Enjoy your day.

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Shirley Hanna: “This is an idea whose time has come.”

Shirley Hanna: “This is an idea whose time has come.”

Shirley Hanna, photo courtesy of Gladstone Taylor, Jamaica Gleaner
“This is an idea whose time has come,” says Mrs. Shirley Hanna, Executive Director of Nice Time Productions Limited, a Jamaican independent film company. Mrs. Hanna is aiming for no less than a shift in the paradigm of how the world perceives children and their rights and protection, much like the shift in mentality that occurred with slavery.

In wars, revolutions, famines and floods and other…

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CARICOM talks with Canada continue

CARICOM talks with Canada continue

Trade talks between Canada and CARICOM countries are proceeding, which is good news considering the final deadline (last December) was extended until this June. A source has told me they are not going well, but officials seem to be putting a good spin on it. Read a solid article about it here.

The problem seems to be aid, with Canada shying away from giving untied, direct development funds,…

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Dress for Success Jamaica

Dress for Success Jamaica

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For many of us, when we score a job interview, the first thing we do is begin to research the company and prepare answers to potential questions. This is a luxury for some people, however, as they must first think about what they will wear.

Dress for Success is an international non-profit organization that provides workplace-appropriate clothes for women who don’t have any. “When we look the…

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Jamaica 43rd on Social Progress Index

Jamaica 43rd on Social Progress Index

There are many ways a country can measure the well-being of its citizens. Gross Domestic Product is often a benchmark economists, politicians and lawmakers use to measure health, happiness and prosperity. The United Nations Millennium Development Goals are perhaps the best known and most adhered to internationally.

However, many of these means of measurement come under fire from people who say…

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The threat of apples

The threat of apples

I was just trying to be honest. I was in Toronto, clearing customs on my way back to Kingston via Miami. Fueled by a little paranoia and a healthy respect for immigration regulations, I answered honestly when the U.S. customs agent asked if I had any food.

“Yes,” I said, “my lunch, some bread and an apple,” I managed to say. “You will have to have the apple inspected,” she said sternly. I have…

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Parsing Vybz Kartel’s Sentence

Parsing Vybz Kartel’s Sentence

Kate Chappell:

Vybz Kartel has received a life sentence. This is big news in JA. Read a great account here.

Originally posted on Active Voice:

Often in the course of his prolonged trial I found myself wondering if the rollercoaster life of Adidja Palmer aka Vybz Kartel was scripted by someone inspired by Breaking Bad, the wildly…

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Happy 100!

My beautiful grandmother turned 100 today. Grace is her name and she was born in 1914.

Happy 100!

My beautiful grandmother turned 100 today. Grace is her name and she was born in 1914.

Triple P for Canada and Jamaica?

Triple P for Canada and Jamaica?

Interesting timing for this story. Jamaica and Canada (and the rest of the Caribbean nations that are part of CARICOM) are currently negotiating a free trade agreement. According to my sources, negotiations are not going well. Canadian High Commissioner to Jamaica Robert Ready is the lead negotiator at this time.

But the Gleaner today runs this story that while Canada is cautious about doing…

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