When Our Institutions FAILED William

In 2019 a minor by the name of William was made a ward of the state after being abandoned by his mother. He was placed into the care of the St. Michael home for boys.

In the same year of 2019 William and another boy escaped the home to get something to eat. This is due to the boys not being able to get something eat at the home. When they escaped, they ended up committing a criminal act. Being minors they were held in the YTC facility.

A duty of care is expected to be placed on these young boys and there is a clear breach of such a duty of care. Therefore, the government must take responsibility.

If they don’t take such responsibility they must do the honorable thing and must resign and resign now.

What is amazing to me is that the government via Minister Webster Roy has initiated an investigation into these homes due to death of two other boys that escaped as well. Up until the present time, no word on the findings of this investigation.

Speaking with Senator David Nakhid, the Children’s Authority has failed in carrying out their role in ensuring that these boys are taking care of at these homes. With the large financial allocations towards these homes one would reasonably expect that these boys would be better taken care of.

Senator Nakhid expressed concern that the CEO of the Children’s Authority was aware of plans of a recent escape that led to death of two young boys. Clearly this shows that the Authority has failed in their duty to take care of these children.

Further to this, the Honourable Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister announced that there were to be a committee to investigate the issues at these homes. The committee even reached out to Senator Nakhid and up to the present time no one has officially taken a statement from him. It clearly shows that this committee was a window dressing committee and has failed, just as the Authority.

The UNC, especially under Kamla Persad-Bissessar, has always concentrated on children — from the Children’s Life Fund, to free laptops, to grants for single mothers, to school feeding, to the Couva Children’s Hospital. This neglect of our children by the PNM Government is therefore particulalry galling and must be corrected.

Brian Baig