Belize Is Ahead On Interventions with Gangs

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Updated: May 24, 2017

The outcome of a study by the Inter-American Development Bank has strongly recommended the use of interventions as part of anti-crime efforts being undertaken by various Caribbean countries.  The intervention method in fighting crime has been the hallmark of ACP Chester Williams’ career since he returned from his legal studies.  Williams has been criticized on numerous occasions because of his dialogue with gang members but it is a method he stands strong on as he says he does his best to reintroduce the gang members back into society.

CHESTER WILLIAMS

“I was happy when I saw the report because again we had been vindicated in the sense that when we just began interventions people were asking why we needed to intervene and why we needed to sit and talk with gangs and that. We would all want to live in a world that is free of gangs but the truth of the matter is that they are here and they are here to say and we have to accept that but the question always lies how do we deal with them, in such a way that we don’t make them feel that they are not a part of society and another thing we need to do is see how we can try to discover what their issues are and not only discover but try to see how we could assist them in overcoming their issues and for the most part their issues have been anger, hate and frustration, frustration at the system, angry at the system and hate for their fellow brother on the street. So then how else can we address those issues if not through interventions. Interventions set the stage for these young men to be able to sit across the table from their enemy and dialogue. It allows them to be able to see what the other side thinks about them and vice versa. Having known what the other side thinks about you then we can find ways and means as to how to assist them to overcome those issues that they are currently facing with their rival group and so that intervention is going good. I do believe it needs to be done more because at the end of the day it is what helps, it is what allows these young men to be able to vent the frustration. When a person is angry the best thing for that person to do is to allow them to vent  because when they keep it inside them it just boils and boils and it becomes like a time bomb just waiting to explode. So with the interventions they don’t get to that stage because we dialogue with them on a weekly basis to learn what their issues are and we try to resolve it with them.”

The interventions currently undergoing in Belize City go beyond just conversation and meetings.  We will bring you a deeper insight into Williams’’ method in tomorrow’s newscast.