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Charlotte Amalie
Tuesday, December 6, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesDeveloping Plans to Improve the Virgin Islands

Developing Plans to Improve the Virgin Islands

Dear Source:
You would think that with John deJongh's past governmental and business experiences he would have had some sort of draft plan tucked away as to how his administration will begin the process of repairing, rebuilding, remodeling and healing of the Virgin Islands. Maybe he does have a plan and just hasn't revealed it as yet.
Governor John deJongh and Lt. Governor Gregory Francis both made many, many feel good statements throughout their campaign, at their inauguration and at the state of the territory address. We need practical, feasible plans that will produce the solutions to improving the quality, productivity and delivery of government services.
Yes, it has only been two months into the new administration and we must be patient and give them an opportunity to formulate an overall plan. The thing is, if you know and understand the mission and goals of each agency along with the vision of where the Virgin Islands could or should be, therein lies the solution for developing a plan to improve the services.
The state of the territory address left a lot to be desired. All who can, get a copy, be it a paper copy or on the Internet read the Governors speech to the people of the Virgin Islands. And you know the Virgin Islands were in lower case through the body of his speech. Maybe it's some kind of "speech writing protocol".
True, his speech was full of hope but not full of how the hope will be achieved, at what cost and to whom? Success in running a business or having worked in the private sector doesn't guarantee success in running a government agency. It is definitely an asset to have both experiences, however, government and private sector are two totally different animals. A one man, unilateral corporate decision made in private sector would come under severe public scrutiny in government.
In order for the new administration to develop plans to restore law, order and safety to our communities, the VIPD leadership will need to redevelop a paramilitary organization, with physically, mentally and psychologically fit officers who will be allowed to discharge their duties without political interference, interruption or influence. VIPD managers must motivate the staff and officers to attain the goals and objectives of the agency along with providing the officers with the adequate resources and supportive services to safely serve and protect our communities.
We need judicial justice! We need decisions that will ensure the protection of our communities. We are all on this journey together as long as we live here, a journey of the healing of our families, our communities, our government, our Virgin Islands. A Virgin Islands where we all should be safe in our homes, in our schools, on the streets and beaches, in the supermarkets and places of worship.
For our police department to begin to regain public trust we can start with reestablishing community policed neighborhoods, more foot patrols and interaction with the communities. More police on our streets and more AGs without real and improved socioeconomic conditions and opportunities will continue to result in the negative fall out we are experiencing today. We need peace officers!
Help housing community leaders and residents develop programs in their community centers to meet the needs of the residents. A laundry, convenience store and after school programs run by the tenants associations improves the quality of life for the residents. Monitorship and leadership training along with developing business skills and with an opportunity to earn money allows for positive youth involvement. Reestablishing the Commission on Youth's objectives of providing safe, healthy, competitive community sports activities will help reduce and redirect
the aggressive energy that is being exhibited by the youth and adults in our communities. Encourage and challenge the sororities and fraternities to actively engage in monitorship of young men and women in our communities.
Try for our children's sake innovative teaching techniques such as teaching to/by music. Our math, science, language, social studies and history scores will improve dramatically! Imagine a student coming up with the answer to music!
Stephanie Scott-Williams
St. Thomas

Editor's note: We welcome and encourage readers to keep the dialogue going by responding to Source commentary. Letters should be e-mailed with name and place of residence to source@viaccess.net.

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