Friday 7 August, 2020

Charge students and realign them

The students attend Lester Vaughan Secondary School.

The students attend Lester Vaughan Secondary School.

The girls who brutally beat another girl after school this week, could face charges.

Police spokesperson, Acting Inspector Roland Cobbler said that the investigation is ongoing and advancing but he said if that course is taken, the students could face charges “based on their actions”.

Cobbler said that “criminal liability in Barbados starts from age 11, so once you do anything against the law from age 11 you can be arrested and charged.”

As it relates to the investigation surrounding the Lester Vaughan Secondary School student-fight, he said that presently he is “awaiting updates”.

In an interview with Loop News, Barbados National Council of Parent - Teacher Associations Inc., Shone Gibbs said that the students should feel the brunt of the law.

“We must ensure that everything is done, because children need to understand that at a certain age, I don’t remember that age, they can be charged. Parents need to understand that also after a certain age…

“It is a dangerous trend. It is a disturbing trend.”

But he added charges should not be the end all. He asserted that the student perpetrators should not get off scot-free and they should be rehabilitated and guided after as well.

“When you see the aggression, when you see the disrespect for adults who try to intervene, outside of the sanctions that must be brought to bear on the perpetrator or perpetrators, there is a clear need for help for those persons too.

“Usually what we have when we see situations like this, it is systemic failure, so the only remedy is systemic rehabilitation.”

And he stressed that time and time again, what the Council has been pushing for, “is whenever we have issues with our children where intervention suggests that they need assistance, we’re suggesting that it must be mandatory that the home environment also benefits from such assistance.

“There is no sense in moving these young ladies or the perpetrators to rehabilitation and then sending them back in an environment that does not support the continual rehabilitation and positive realignment of that child.”

Insisting that we look at this issue of aggression amongst young females holistically, he reiterated that we must get all agencies involved to ensure that we don’t provide “a quick fix, only provide sanctions for certain infractions, but the most important thing is to realign these children to something positive, to their purpose at the end of the day.”

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