Former Police Commissioner of St. Kitts- Nevis Mr. Austin Williams said, “The only leader who demonstrated an interest in assisting the Police was Former Premier of Nevis, the Hon. Joseph Parry.”
Mr. Williams made the statement on a recent edition of Issues, hosted by Junie Liburd on Freedom FM radio, that when he informed then Premier of Nevis, Hon. Parry that accommodation for the police was not sufficient and many of the officers were from neighboring islands and had no accommodation, Hon Parry said to him, “If it is accommodation that they need, it is accommodation they will get.”
Subsequently a new police station was built in Cotton Ground and barracks were provided for the police officers in Bath plain and Butlers.
The former Premier and his Nevis Reformation Party (NRP) led Administration purchased vehicles for the police, added dog patrols, a speed trap, bullet proof vests for the police and a CCTV camera operation that was purchased by the Taiwanese government.
Realizing that a high ranking officer was needed in Nevis, the Hon. Joseph Parry approached the Prime Minister to appoint an Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP). Within a few weeks, an ACP was stationed on Nevis.
Symposium’s on crime were hosted by the NRP led Administration to improve the crime fighting effort on Nevis. Government officials, business owners and all stake holders including members of the Opposition were asked to discuss initiatives towards ending crime.
Out of the meetings came a multi-pronged approach to crime including educating students from Kindergarten to sixth form that gang culture was not glamorous. A battery of programs through the Ministry of Social Affairs was implemented:
1.Parenting programs 2.Young men who were inclined to become gang members were trained for the world of work 3.To encourage students to stay in school a Homework assistance program was started and by 2013 the drop out levels had moved from 40% to 3% and 4.The education department was encouraged to reinforce the teaching of values and morals from kindergarten to high schools.
In Hon. Joseph Parry’s mission to curb crime, an experimental program on morals and ethics was introduced at Comberemere primary school based on the St. Croix, USVI experience.
The churches were also invited to give support to these initiatives as it was felt that every stakeholder had a role to play in making Nevis a better place and our children better citizens.