By Sergeant 3150 Nathalie Ranger
WHEN a child is born, they are born into a world of sin. Despite their innocence, they immediately become prisoners of their environment and the many influences around them. For some kids, these influences can lead them to a life of progress and success; however, not all kids are blessed with this type of situation. Every day, countless kids are brought into this world amidst broken homes, disrespectful adults, and neighbourhood gangs, all of which play a huge role in negatively influencing these young and very impressionable minds. These unfortunate circumstances tend to mould our youth into very disrespectful, rebellious, and possibly violent individuals. Is this a definite outcome for youths in these situations, no, however, environments such as these aren’t easy for our youths to deal with, causing many of them to fall victim to such a lifestyle.
I believe that it is now time that we citizens and residents of this country reassess our approach to this country’s crime issue; we must now seriously consider addressing our crime issue at the root by taking a more active role in the lives of our nation’s children.
We are all quite aware of the issues that this country is experiencing as it relates to crime. My solution to this is that we continue to rehabilitate, but instead of only rehabilitating an already matured mind, we need to focus our efforts on the minds of our children starting at the primary school level; the boys and girls of our country who are lost, and need guidance from positive individuals in an effort to save their future.
Children find themselves in situations that often lead to escalated conflicts with their peers. Many children act out their emotions in the form of teasing, gossiping, and physical aggression. If left unchecked, these same behavioural patterns will transfer over to the teenage years and some of these kids will pick up a weapon such as a gun because they feel as if that is the only way to solve a conflict. So it is important that we teach the children of this country how to deal with conflicts and have ongoing projects and seminars in all schools and throughout the community.
These kids are crying out for help by being rebellious, turning to gangs and violence, and also turning to negative adults for attention.
In conjunction with the Ministry of Education, I propose that we as a country work along with the schools and each community in an effort to point out the troubled kids; not only the ones who may be bullies and/or known gangsters, but also kids who may seems to possibly be heading in those directions.
Utilizing that we can create a comfortable setting where there will be an opportunity to sit down and have real conversations with these troubled kids. Instead of threatening their actions with harsh consequences like death and imprisonment, we instead take a more passive approach by creating rapport with these youths.
We do this by listening to their stories and understanding what they may be going through, while suggesting an alternative to dealing with their unfortunate circumstances. Although the obvious consequences of death and imprisonment are a harsh reality for a lot of our troubled youths, I believe that it would help if we listen and help to encourage these children as this is what they may be lacking at home.
By talking with each parent and listening to the issues that they are facing with their child, we will be better equipped to encourage them to be more present in the lives of their children.
Also provided suggestions to them on how they can help to turn the lives of their kids around for the better.
There is no Government, organization or person that can do this alone.
It takes the effort of all citizens and residents to join hands in the fight against crime in order to save our future which is the children and make the Bahamas a safe place for all.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT THE NATIONAL CRIME PREVENTION OFFICE AT 302-8430, 3028431, 3028154.