Child abductions ‘distressing’, former minister says
The recent string of child abductions on New Providence is “extremely distressing and unacceptable”, former Minister of Social Services Melanie Griffin said yesterday.
There have been six child abductions on the island in the past month. Police have yet to arrest anyone in connection with the incidents.
“With regard to the recent abductions of children in the country, I think it’s very distressing, in fact extremely distressing, and I can only imagine the trauma for the children and their families,” Griffin said.
“I certainly also believe that this seems to be some new phenomenon going on, and certainly it is totally unacceptable.”
Griffin expressed confidence that government agencies are working to address the situation.
However, she joined others in calling for the speedy implementation of the MARCO Alert.
“The police and other agencies, I am certain that they are doing all they can to get to the bottom of it,” she said.
“I could certainly say that I am hoping that the MARCO Alert will be playing its role in this whole situation.”
Minister of National Security Marvin Dames said last week that the implementation of the MARCO Alert is a priority.
Griffin also spoke on the role of the Ministry of Social Services in the issue of child abductions, applauding social workers, but criticizing the ministry’s leadership.
“Social services certainly is a very important arm of the government and has a role in the entire situation,” she said.
Griffin continued, “With regard to social services’ role, whatever their roles are, they are quite capable of handling it when they are allowed to do their job.
“I continue to say, when I have the opportunity, that social services under this administration are severely weakened by some of the actions taken by the leadership of [the Ministry of] Social Services.”
She added, “I do know that social workers are highly trained, and they know their job, and once allowed to do it, they will do it.”
Education: Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish