September 3 should be made a day of national significance, says member of the September 3 Foundation, David Comissiong.
On that day back in 2010 Barbados was thrown into mourning when the lives of Pearl Cornelius, Kelly-Ann Welch, Kallishaw Ollivere, Nakkita Belgrave, Tiffany Harding and Shanna Griffith were taken when the clothing store which they were in was set on fire.
The foundation was established to memorialise the six victims and do positive community development project in the names of the young women, Comissiong said. So ahead the second anniversary of September 3, he was imploring authorities to officially recognise the day.
“We believe we should establish September third as a day of national significance — a day when the entire nation reflects on this issue of violent crimes and the duty we owe to our young people to nurture and guide them properly. What was the most shocking about the Campus Trendz tragedy was that you had young men seemingly incapable of recognising that these women were their kith and kin. When these young men went into the shop they should have recognised that they were a part of their extended family, fellow Barbadians, citizens, people who were no different to themselves.
“This concerns us, we have to ask ourselves ‘What are we doing here in Barbados?’ We are creating people who do not have a sense of brotherhood. The events that transpired since September 2010 would lead us to believe we did not learn much from the Campus Trendz tragedy.”
Comissiong said via telephone that “the committed” believed by recognising the day it may impact more on people and as a result change in behaviours would follow. On Monday, they have also asked everyone in Barbados to stop at noon to observe one minute of silence or silent prayer for the victims.
Other planned activities were: on Sunday September 2, all churches have been asked to devote the sermons to the late young women. There is also a plan in the works to have a discussion focussed on the youth, alienation and criminality and solutions for such. Members of the September 3 Foundation along with family members of the six victims will go to the grave sites and lay flowers.
In April the foundation staged a one-day seminar where they were able to get input and Comissiong said they were looking forward to highlighting the results.
“We need to work permanently to help Barbados to come to grip on this trouble. If something as horrific as the deaf of six beautiful, innocent, young women does not grab the attention of Barbados nothing else will,” he said ahead of a press conference scheduled for tomorrow. (KC)