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Journalist and Political Leader among the latest dead in Haiti gang-led crisis – Magnetic Media

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By Sherrica Thompson
Staff Writer
 
#Haiti, November 2, 2022 – At least three people were killed between October 28 and October 30 in Haiti as the country continues to struggle even more with gang violence.
On Sunday, October 30, a Haitian journalist, Romelo Vilsaint, was killed after being shot in the head. Reports by The Associated Press are that police opened fire on reporters who were demanding the release of one of their colleagues, who were detained while covering a protest.
Vilsaint is said to have been a journalist for an online news site.  This attack happened mere days after a well-unknown Haitian journalist, Roberson Alphonse, escaped an assassination while on his way to work on Tuesday, October 25.
Meanwhile, on Friday, October 28th, a prominent leader and businessman, Eric Jean Baptiste and his bodyguard were killed in Laboule 12, Port-au-Prince.
Baptiste was reportedly on his way home around 9 PM when attackers opened fire on their vehicle.
Justice of the peace of Pétion-Ville, Clément Noël, told Haitian media company Le Nouvelliste that Baptiste’s car was riddled with over ten bullets.
“I saw 14 bullet holes. The attackers used large-calibre weapons. Some projectiles pierced level 4 (vehicle) armour.  I noticed a bullet hole in the back seat where Éric Jean Baptiste was sitting, which would have hit him in the pelvis.
“The driver’s body is unrecognizable.  His skull exploded.  He received several projectiles,” Noël described to the Le Nouvelliste.
Several Haitian officials and agencies have condemned Friday’s killings.
“We strongly condemn this heinous crime against this patriot, this moderate politician committed to change. We present, on behalf of the government and the people of Haiti, our sincere condolences to the families of the victims, to the RDNP and to the political class, today revolted by this heinous crime,” Prime Minister of Haiti, Ariel Henry, said.
The embassies of the United States and France in Haiti have also expressed their views on the killing noting that they “strongly condemned the murder” of the former presidential candidate.
“The United States Embassy condemns the brutal murder of Éric Jean Baptiste of the RDNP as well as the murder of 6 people in Juvenat. We extend our condolences to the loved ones of the deceased,” the embassy wrote on Twitter.
“The French Embassy in Haiti says it is horrified to learn and strongly condemns the assassination of Mr. Éric Jean-Baptiste, Secretary General of the RDNP. The Embassy sends its condolences to the family, friends and loved ones of the deceased.  It calls on the Haitian authorities to take the necessary measures to find and punish the perpetrators of this crime,” the French embassy said.
No motive has been given for Friday’s attack.  However, reports are that it might be gang-related.

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By Dana Malcolm
Staff Writer
 
#TurksandCaicos, November 2, 2022 – The Birds and the Bees: the potentially awkward but necessary conversation between parents and children that introduces them to sexual education and sexual safety.  It is a must for all parents and children but many adults may not know how to go about it.  Raising Children, a childcare website funded by the Government of Australia, says young children are naturally curious and may want to know about their bodies and where babies come from.
The advice?
In addition parents should teach young children about their personal space and how to protect it.  Explain to young children that no one should touch them without their permission, this includes hugs, unwanted kisses on the cheeks, tickles etc.
Allowing your toddlers and young children to set boundaries regarding simple touches like these and supporting them in their decisions will make them more likely to understand the difference between good touches and bad ones.
It will also make them more likely to be vocal if they experience something that makes them uncomfortable.
For teens and preteens on the other hand, interest in sex is normal according to the US Centres for Disease Control. The number one rule is not to hide the reality of sex or associate it with shame.
The CDC says in surveys carried out with teens, the youngsters reported that their parents are the ones who have the greatest influence over their decisions about sex “more than friends, siblings, or the media.”
In addition, most of the young respondents said, “they share their parents’ values about sex, and making decisions about delaying sex would be easier if they could talk openly and honestly with their parents.”
The agency encourages parents to:
In addition, parents should see their children as complete and whole individuals who can be hurt or put off by their attitude and communication skills.
Try not to punish your child for confiding in you as this may be a deterrent in the future, reiterate that they are loved, cared for and trusted.
Do not ever brush off reports of assault from your child.
Finally there are several signs to look out for in teens and children if you suspect they may have experienced or are experiencing sexual, harassment assault or rape.
The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) says It’s not always easy to spot signs of sexual assault in children that, parents caregivers, doctors, teachers, pastors, sisters, brothers and friends are advised to look out for,
In addition to those signs, the organization says there are indicators of who can are those potential perpetrators or threats to your children.  Keep a keen eye on adults who, try to be a child’s friend rather than playing an adult role in their life or grown-ups who spend time alone with children outside of their role in the child’s life or makes up excuses to be alone with the child.
Also a red flag, adults who express unusual interest in child’s sexual development, such as commenting on sexual characteristics or sexualizing normal behaviors:
A warning sign too is adults who give a child gifts without occasion or reason; spend a lot of time with your child or another child you know and restricts a child’s access to other adults.
Advice from professionals for individuals who may suspect children are being abused is to trust your gut and get professionals involved.

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#Kingston, Jamaica, November 2, 2022 – The Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) is to introduce a new customer relationship management system as part of several planned upgrades to streamline the services of the agency.
Chief Executive Officer, PICA, Andrew Wynter, said the project is part of the agency’s mandate to strengthen Jamaica’s relationship with the diaspora.
“We are looking at ways to leverage technology that will certainly enhance your experience in accessing any of the products or services that the agency has to offer,” he said.  Mr. Wynter was addressing the recent ‘Let’s Connect with Ambassador Marks’ virtual session.
PICA accepts and processes passport applications, manages the island’s immigration processes, and handles citizenship matters.  Other initiatives that have been implemented by the agency include automated kiosks, upgrading the passport system, digitised passenger declaration form, and the introduction of a simplified passport renewal form for adults.
“If you have a machine-readable passport and your information has not changed since your last passport, you don’t need a notary public. You just complete the simplified form, bring in your passport, and we are able to now process your application information much quicker,” Mr. Wynter said.  He added that the initiative is part of several measures being implemented by the agency to make the processing services easier.
Mr. Wynter said the agency’s ‘Access Jamaica’ programme, which provides direct support services to the diaspora in passport processing services, has also been instrumental in providing ease of access to PICA services.  Under the programme, a team from PICA recently provided direct services to members of the diaspora in the United States of America (USA) and the United Kingdom (UK).
In the USA, the team visited Atlanta in Georgia; Orlando and Fort Lauderdale, Florida; and Hartford, Connecticut; and in the UK, London.
“We have found that these programmes help to support the various Missions overseas, because we know that since the (COVID-19) pandemic, the diaspora’s demands on the Missions have increased, so we as an agency are working very hard to provide services that complement and support them,” he said.
 
Contact: Rochelle Williams
Release: JIS

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By Shanieka Smith
Staff Writer
 
#Cuba, November 2, 2022 – Speaking at the Cuba Salud 2022, Director of Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO), Clarissa Etienne, encouraged Caribbean leaders to prioritize their people’s health.
She said COVID-19 has caused major setbacks in reaching the United Nations’ 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), particularly the third goal which prompts all countries to “ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.”
Minister of Public Health of Cuba, José Ángel Portal Miranda called for increased access to healthcare. He said that by using scientific advances and training staff, the health systems can be improved.
As part of PAHO’s SMART program, 13 wellness facilities have been constructed. These facilities are not only environmentally friendly but are also able to withstand various climatic conditions.
In Dominica, the government has partnered with MMC Development Ltd to build 13 health centres on the island. Guyana has also made strides in increasing the accessibility and availability of cancer treatment on the island.

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