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Speakers’ Corner is launched

The education system and black history were among the issues tackled during the island's first “Speakers' Corner” on Sunday afternoon.

Dozens turned up to the Loyal Gazette event at Loyal Hill Field in Devonshire, which allowed members of the public a platform to discuss the island's topical issues.

Former Progressive Labour Party MP Dale Butler joined residents from across the island to take part in the unique event that is loosely based on London's Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park.

The event began with a prayer, before Pamela Richardson, of Southampton, took to the platform to urge Bermudians, especially men, to abstain from alcohol.

“We need to eat properly,” she said.

“Too many are dying of cancer. A 33-year-old black mother with a young baby was buried this week.”

Ms Richardson called on Bermudians to “stop the gossiping and stop ridiculing each other”.

Dr Muriel Smith then spoke about a “falsified curriculum for our children” and maintained that African history needed to be taught in schools in Bermuda.

“We have to care about our children,” she said.

“We need to dismantle the education system and replace it with something designed for our children.”

Meanwhile, Mr Butler gave a passionate speech about the need to find solutions to the island's problems.

“Rather than pointing fingers, where is the solution?” he asked.

“It is not good enough to just criticise without a solution.”

Event organiser, Keith Simmons, who is also chairman of the Devonshire Community Field Trustees, said he hoped word would spread about the event and more would attend the next Speakers' Corner, planned for July.

“I hope we can take this and build on it,” he said. “We have had some great speakers, but we need more speakers from across the community.”

A white sheet hanging up advertising the 'Loyal Gazette' public speaking event, which took place during the weekend. (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

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Published June 14, 2016 at 9:00 am (Updated June 14, 2016 at 9:12 am)

Speakers’ Corner is launched

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