House: Caines on anti-gang efforts
Daily efforts from the Government’s gang violence reduction team are under way in a bid to tackle the island’s gang culture, the national security minister told MPs on Friday.
Wayne Caines said the two-man team has met at-risk pupils in both public senior schools since September, as well as police, and has co-ordinated mediation between pupils involved with rival gangs.
Mr Caines said the team has also assisted pupils with transportation. MPs also heard updates on the Redemption Farm programme.
Mr Caines said the ministry had held “marvellous” talks with Carlos Amaral, chairman of the Bermuda Farmers Association.
He added land has been cleared for the farm, with seedlings now being grown and a farming plan was being prepared.
Mr Caines said the farmers group will give “support and assistance wherever they are able”.
He added violence reduction team continued to intervene with pupils at the primary and middle school level, and has prison outreach and street-level outreach work to “lower community tensions”.
Mr Caines said the work of the programme co-ordinator, Pastor Leroy Bean, was “highly confidential and sensitive” and improper to reveal details of Mr Bean’s workwith those “who are currently involved or have been directly impacted by gang violence”.
The minister added: “At the street level, the team’s overarching strategy is to target individuals and groups who are known to be players in the cycle of violent behaviour.”
• To read Wayne Caines’s statement in full, click on the PDF link under “Related Media”