COVID-19 Poses Threats To Regional Security

COVID-19 Poses Threats To Regional Security

COVID-19 Poses Threats To Regional Security

Regional Security System | Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Executive Director of the RSS, Captain (N) Errington Shurland

Cyber security, border security and food security within the Caribbean region have been highlighted as three areas which pose significant vulnerabilities during a crisis such as the current COVID-19 pandemic.

This was the view of Executive Director of the Regional Security System (RSS), Captain (N) Errington Shurland, as he delivered his presentation at the first Virtual Security Conference in the Caribbean Community which was hosted by the CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (CARICOM IMPACS).

Captain Shurland stated that COVID-19 presented new challenges to addressing the already existing transnational crimes such as the illegal trafficking of drugs and firearms and the rising level of violence.

“The pandemic has definitely brought into stark reality the multi-dimensional nature of security challenges confronting our region… Individually they threaten the well-being of CARICOM countries but together they threaten our very existence,” he asserted.

The RSS official indicated that with the recent surge in remote business operations and information and communications technology (ICT), there has been a rise in cybercrime, with evidence showing a 350 per cent increase in the phishing of websites.

Stressing the need for cyber security providers to shift their focus to building a resilient cyber domain, Captain Shurland stated: “I would suggest, strongly so, that consideration be given to signing on to the Budapest Convention; it is the first international treaty seeking to address internet and computer crime by harmonizing national laws, improving investigative techniques and increasing cooperation.”

He further noted that countries in the region must be more agile in creating or updating national cyber security strategies.

The Executive Director also highlighted the importance of border security coordination, noting that the operational challenges which border security agencies had faced in the first stages of the COVID-19 outbreak highlighted the need to “step-up” assistance on health related issues, including crisis management and contingency planning.

Captain Shurland posited that: “Just as transnational organized crime does not stop at borders similarly the coronavirus does not.  The importance of Border Security coordination and cooperation is even more critical as a consequence of COVID-19, and evidence suggests that there is a need for a better Border Management System at the national level that is fully integrated.”

The RSS head maintained that “an overarching regional response mechanism that includes the development of plans for biological, chemical, radiological and even nuclear hazards, at the intermediate and national response levels, must be considered.”

With regards to food security, Captain Shurland underscored its connection to national security.  He explained that due to a catastrophic decline in revenues and insufficient access to concessional financing, countries may be unable to import food, which would lead to food shortages and could potentially spearhead civil unrest.

“The onset of COVID-19 has underscored for our region, and indeed the global community, the need to establish effective and meaningful collaborative mechanisms to anticipate global risks and threats… What is critical for us not only as a region, but as a global community, is to focus on information sharing… I believe that multilateralism is critical in wrestling COVID-19 to the ground,” he opined.

Regional Security System 

Prisons Equipped to Fight COVID-19

Prisons Equipped to Fight COVID-19

Prisons Equipped to Fight COVID-19

Regional Security System | Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Members of the Barbados Defence Force transferring sanitizing supplies for shipment. (Photo: RSS)

Prisons in Barbados and St. Vincent and the Grenadines are now better equipped to combat the infection and transmission of COVID-19.

Executive Director of the CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (CARICOM IMPACS), Lt. Col. Michael Jones and Executive Director of the Regional Security System (RSS), Captain (N) Errington Shurland, handed over various basic sanitation supplies to Superintendent of the Barbados Prison Service, Lt. Col. John Nurse, during a brief presentation at the RSS Air Wing, earlier today. Lt. Col. Jones then made a similar presentation to the Superintendent of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Prison Service, Brenton Charles, along with British Resident Coordinator, Steve Moore, at the Argyle International Airport.

Executive Director of CARICOM IMPACS, Major Michael Jones and Executive Director of the RSS, Captain (N) Errington Shurland, handing over sanitation supplies to Superintendent of the Barbados Prison Service, Lt. Col. John Nurse. (Photo: RSS)

The items which were donated include infrared thermometers, cleaning products such as disinfectant, liquid soap, bleach and hand sanitizers, among other necessary supplies, all in accordance with guidelines issued by the World Health Organisation for the prevention and control of the pandemic in prisons.

The Prison Service of Suriname also benefited from the donations, and their supplies were recently airlifted from the Grantley Adams International Airport by Surinam Airways. Nine other CARICOM Member States will also receive supplies over the next week.

The handover of the supplies are a joint effort of CARICOM IMPACS, the British High Commission in Port of Spain and the RSS, which will be transporting the items to the various Member States.

Regional Security System / CARICOM IMPACS

Regional Secondary School Essay Competition Winners Announced

Regional Secondary School Essay Competition Winners Announced

Regional Secondary School Essay Competition Winners Announced

Regional Security System | Monday, May 11, 2020

Students in the CARICOM region are commended for the high quality of essays the CCC received.​ (Stock photo)

The CARICOM Competition Commission (CCC) is pleased to announce the winners of its Inaugural Regional Secondary School Essay Competition, which concluded on March 31, 2020. The competition was a key component of the advocacy drive by the CCC to foster a competition and consumer culture in the region, from the ground up. Students were challenged to think about the importance and benefits of competition and consumer protection laws to the region. The CCC received 50 entries from students across the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

Students in the CARICOM region are commended for the high quality of essays the CCC received, and for their creativity in the use of pictures and videos in some instances to articulate their views on the benefits of competition and consumer protection laws.

There were two age categories for students: ages 12-15 and 16-19.  They were asked to write on one of two topics:

  1. “How does fair competition among businesses benefit me and my region?” and
  2. “How does consumer protection law benefit me and my Region.?”

It gives the CCC great pleasure to announce the winners of the two age categories as follows:

Ages 12-15 students

First place USD $1000: Hadassah Cuffy, Basseterre High School, St. Kitts & Nevis

Second place USD $750: Hadiah McBean, St Joseph Secondary, Guyana

Third place USD $500: Hayley-Shai Kassie, Montserrat Secondary School, Montserrat

Ages 16-19 students

First place USD $1000: Jerome Samuels, Jamaica College, Jamaica

Second place USD $750: Celeste Samuel, ASJA Girls’ College San Fernando, Trinidad & Tobago

Second place USD $750: Simone Ann Cruz, Sacred Heart College, Belize

Given the high level of essays submitted, the Commission also wishes to identify the following students whose quality essays need special mention:

Ages 12-15 students

Kya Knight, Deighton Griffith Secondary School, Barbados

Lorenzo Cuellar, Belize High School, Belize

Darius Payne, Naparima College, Trinidad & Tobago

Jude Mahase, Naparima College, Trinidad & Tobago

Jamal Mosely, Deighton Griffith Secondary School, Barbados

Ages 16-19 students

Toushanae Norris, Campion College, Jamaica

Zachary Ramsumair, Naparima College, Trinidad & Tobago

Raheed Gilzene, St Jago High School, Jamaica

Serena Blair, Black River High School, Jamaica

Jahmari Beecher, St. Mary’s College, Jamaica

The CCC specially thanks our judges and all independent regional experts who contributed in no small way to the competition’s success:

  1. Mr. Bevan Narinesingh- Trinidad and Tobago Fair Trading Competition
  2. Prof. Emerita Hazel Simmonds McDonald – University of the West Indies (recommended by the CXC)
  3. Dr. Brian Francis- Barbados Fair Trading Commission
  4. Mr. Hans Lim A Po – Former CCC Commissioner
  5. Ms. Annmarie Grant from Jamaica Fair Trading Commission

All essays were second marked by the Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (TATT) who are commended for a thorough and timely job:

  • Dr. Dickson Osuala
  • Mr. Antonio Fletcher

This regional essay competition would not have been possible without the partnership of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) who funded the competition and provided the consumer videos used to sensitise students across the region,; the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) and Barbados Fair Trading Commission (BFTC) who provided sponsorship; the excellent advocacy by the national competition and consumer authorities in the CSME in promoting the competition in their respective jurisdictions; the Ministries of Education in each participating Member State; and the teachers who ensured that as many students as possible participated in this inaugural competition. Thanks also to Naparima College, Trinidad for hosting live lectures by the CCC and sharing the live coverage on their Facebook page.

CARICOM Competition Commission

Deadline Extended for CARICOM Essay Competition

Deadline Extended for CARICOM Essay Competition

Deadline Extended for CARICOM Essay Competition

Regional Security System | Thursday, December 12, 2019

The Regional Essay Competition is open to secondary school students from across the Caribbean community. (Stock Photo)

Students interested in participating in the CARICOM Competition Commission’s (CCC) inaugural Regional Essay Competition, now have until Tuesday, March 31, 2020 to submit entries.

The competition is open to secondary school students from across the Caribbean community and aims to educate youth on the importance of competition law and policy and consumer protection.

Interested students may choose from one of the following topics:

  • How does fair competition among businesses benefit me and my region?
  • How does consumer protection law benefit me and my region?

Entries should be sent to registry@ccc.sr under the caption Regional Youth Essay Competition.

To obtain further details on the criteria, terms and conditions and prizes, visit http://www.caricomcompetitioncommission.com/en.

Regional Security System

 

Essay Competition For Secondary School Students From The Region

Essay Competition For Secondary School Students From The Region

Essay Competition For Secondary School Students From The Region

Regional Security System | Wed 27 August 19

Submissions for the Regional Youth Essay Competition must be in an electronic PDF format. (Stock photo)

The CARICOM Competition Commission (CCC) is inviting secondary school students from across the Caribbean community to participate in its inaugural Regional Youth Essay Competition.

The CCC aims to educate youth on competition and consumer advocacy at an early stage in their development, and therefore has designed this initiative to bring awareness across the region to the importance of competition law and policy and consumer protection.

Interested students may choose from one of the following topics:

  • How does fair competition among businesses benefit me and my region?
  • How does consumer protection law benefit me and my region?

Persons between the ages of 12 and 15 will be required to submit an essay of maximum 1000 words, while students aged 16 to 19 years will write essays of between 1200 and 2000 words.

Essays must be submitted in an electronic PDF format and must have a cover page showing the title of the essay; the student’s name, age, date of birth and school; the name and contact number of a parent or guardian; and the name of the supervising teacher.

The deadline for submission is 3:30 p.m. Eastern Caribbean Time, Friday, December 13, 2019. Entries should be sent to registry@ccc.sr under the caption Regional Youth Essay Competition.

To obtain further details on the criteria, terms and conditions and prizes, visit http://www.caricomcompetitioncommission.com/en/news.

Regional Security System