In an effort to provide employment for ex-prisoners, Prayer Warriors International this week presented four brand new weed whackers to the Barbados Prison Fellowship whose executive director Thomas Watts was highly appreciative of the support.
During Wednesday’s brief handing over ceremony, Head of the Prayer Warriors International Evangelist Courtney Selman said the idea was to keep the former inmates gainfully employed and out of trouble with the law.
“We thought this gesture of providing these weed whackers will help to support the ex-prisoners themselves and their families. This gesture, I wish to respectfully suggest, will possibility make a positive impact on the in, out and in again traffic [at Dodds prison] by some [repeat offenders]. It may possibly also cut down on the crime situation,” he said, adding that “you may agree with me that when one is deprived of the basic necessities of living and has no means of being able to provide an income to support themselves and that of his or her family, he or she will find alternative methods of doing so”.
Selman also urged the recipients of the support to give back to the initiative.
“I have proposed that those ex-prisoners who will be using the weed whackers are required to give 15 per cent of their daily earnings – ten per cent of it will be put towards the cost of the weed whacker and five per cent to the Prison Fellowship towards their administration costs until the cost of the weed whacker is covered,” he explained.
Selman said the intention was also to allow the ex cons to eventually own the weed whackers and at the same time expand the Prison Fellowship’s rehabilitation drive.
In response to rising crime on the island, the religious leader also suggested that Barbados should adopt the auxiliary police model currently in use in the United States.
“A programme such as this, I wish to suggest, will take a whole lot of load off the already busy police. They are already saddled with crimes and other maladies. I believe that a unit of auxiliary police will help exponentially with the problems in schools, as I understand that the RBPF [Royal Barbados Police Force] do not have the adequate resources or manpower to do so at this time,” he explained.