In recent times, international magazines such as The Economist and Time, online news sites such as Reuters, and cable television channels including CNN, USA Today and NBC have all highlighted rising crime in the Caribbean, especially when tourists have been the targets.
Former Chairman of the CTO and Minister of Tourism and International Transport in St. Kitts and Nevis, Mr. Richard “Ricky” Skerritt, said it is Caribbean people who give bad publicity to the Caribbean.
“The people who tend to market the Caribbean as a crime destination, unfortunately, are Caribbean people. We tend to promote by social media and other means to our friends and family—we tend to propagate bad news and we sometimes exaggerate bad news ourselves,” Minister Skerritt said.
“I think that crime certainly is a concern but we are very fortunate in that there are very few incidents that relate to visitors,” he said. “I think the authorities across the region are taking new and more effective approaches at managing crime as well.”
Minister Skerritt said that crime was not an issue in the conference, which was held under the theme “Developing a Winning Tourism Strategy”.
“Crime was not an issue in this conference. What was an issue in this conference was how do we improve the assets, both natural and man-made, of our countries and how do we use those assets to bring economic activity through tourism and generate a better quality of life for our people,” he said.