The murder rates in Kingston and St. James are worse than Iraq during war time!
That’s according to anthropologist, Dr. Herbert Gayle, who made the revelation during a forum on crime at the University of the West Indies last week.
According to Dr. Gayle, Jamaica has a murder rate of about 50 per 100-thousand people.
However, he says this increases dramatically when you isolate parishes like Kingston and St. James.
He says there’s a further increase when you look at what he describes as the combatant age, young men between the ages of 18 and 34.
According to Dr. Gayle, Kingston and St. James are the two major hubs of crime across the island, with the violence spilling over to neighbouring parishes.
However, he says gangsters in Clarendon are also now influencing crime in neighbouring Manchester.
And, he says the culture of violence has become so ingrained in Jamaican society, that it’s become intricately linked to the economy.
Meanwhile, Dr. Gayle says the government must ensure that all boys are in school, if they hope to keep them from being recruited by gangs.
Dr. Gayle says the education system is the first problem, with far fewer schools for boys than for girls.
Dr. Herbert Gayle was speaking at a forum called “Taming the Caribbean’s Crime Monster” at the University of the West Indies Mona last week.