Hundreds of Barbadians have signed a petition demanding the banning of cellphones in schools, in light of the posting of two new pornographic video tapes on Facebook, showing students on the compound of two schools engaging in sexual acts.
Led by drug educator, counsellor and minister of religion Roger Husbands, a small group of young people staged a peaceful demonstration in front of Parliament this afternoon, while at the same time, soliciting signatures for a campaign against cellphones in schools. Husbands said the Government
will also be given an ultimatum to put measures in place, not already standing by to join in an expanded campaign, an action
only to enforce the no-cellphone rule in schools, but to show its intention to amend two pieces of legislation that could help address the shooting of porn and to bring stiffer sentences to perpetrators, as well as parents.
The counsellor told reporters the ultimatum now had to be decided by the committee behind this campaign. He disclosed that more than 200 signatures had so far been taken from Barbadians during the initiative in Bridgetown today.
“We will put the petition in an envelope. I have already contacted the relevant ministries, and will give them X amount of time; the committee will decide that time to put things in place. If not, we will come out in our masses and go striking,” he declared.
Husbands revealed that a large number of people were
that would be taken if the proposed deadline was not met. He said he and his group would therefore be calling on parent- teacher associations, school principals, teachers’ unions and churches to give solidarity.
“We will open up to the masses,” he added. “The petition is to force the Government to endorse legislation to protect the child.”
The drug eductor is demanding nine things from the Government. For example, “the arrest and imprisonment of all persons, young and old, who video- tape and distribute this child porn”. Others include enforcement of the no-cell phone rule at primary and secondary schools, holding parents accountable for enforcing the same rule, “and if these rules are broken, with investigation, place a heavy fine on parents who don’t comply”.
He is also demanding that the Computer Misuse Transactions Act be amended to bring the legislation in line
with the current trends among young people. Husbands wants,
as well, the proper equipping of the Internet Office, which has
been in place for a long time. By doing this, he suggested, the
officers would be better able to carry out “upscale investigtion”
into porn activities and online sexual expositions. (EJ)