A Time to Clasp Hands
Time has changed. What have changed along with time?
Redistribution of income.
Non enforcement of Laws.
High levels of unemployment.
Justice system constipated
Lack of responsibility by key sectors of Society.
A recurring narrative in Barbados fuelled by an unprecedented number of murders recorded at the mid-year is the idea the political directorate has the solution. The political estate is a member of civil society and obviously has a major role to play, however, it cannot be a singular effort if we are to be successful.
For a long time this blogmaster has crystallized a view that the lack of civic awareness by John and Jane Citizen represents a large part of the challenge to sustain a quality society. Does the average John and Jane understand the meaning of civil society? It is a term that is freely included in discussions these days as the national debate shifts gears in reaction to the pace social, economic and environmental degradation in taking place in Barbados.
A World Bank definition of civil society “refers to a wide array of organizations: community groups, non-governmental organizations [NGOs], labour unions, indigenous groups, charitable organizations, faith-based organizations, professional associations, and foundations.” For many years Barbados authorities have boasted about the benefit of the Social Partnership comprised of government, labour unions and private sector. From observation through years of its existence the social partnership is triggered into action to respond to economic challenges. There is no malicious intent by the blogmaster to attack the social partnership. Any opportunity to bring interest groups to the table to pull on the peace pipe must be viewed as positive. What is instructive is that other islands having observed the Barbados model have seen the wisdom to expand membership in the social partnership by including other groups in civil society.
The quote by Vincent Codrington was posted as a contribution to identify factors responsible for a deteriorating social landscape in Barbados. He subsequently affirmed it is not an exhaustive list. What his contribution reinforces is that it will require a collective approach to attack present day challenges of crime to name one of the pressing ones. Leaders from every sphere of society must work to design the best approaches to wrestle back Barbados from the grip of dark forces.
Observing the commentary on social media, talk programs and street light chatter suggest there is a willingness by ordinary citizens to outsource the solution to our problem to government and political directorate. The government is a key member in civil society, however, it will require other members of civil society to deliver on respective mandates.
Besides the need for all groups in Barbados to work together in a meaningful way. The new normal of the times requires solutions to be tailored and implemented quickly by avoiding modalities from another time. It is accepted that extraordinary times require people to do extraordinary things to avoid chaos and dysfunction. All agree that we are experiencing unprecedented challenges and have reached the tipping point that should be a signal for everybody to rally if not for ourselves for the sake of the children.