Letter: Concerns about children and safety

I have been to see a Councilor in the Ministry of Education about several issues concerning our schoolchildren that are of great concern to me, and I believe others as well.

I would like to commend the West Bay Primary School staff for their efforts in protecting our children after school; instead of just letting them leave the school as they have done for many years, the security guard is making sure that they are being picked up by parents or guardians.

Another concern that I have is that of the children’s shoes; their shoe laces are always coming loose – this looks very untidy and it is also unsafe. Their shoes should be a part of their uniform; the girls should be alike and the boys alike – perhaps they could be shoes with a strap for the girls and velcro sneakers for the boys. Something needs to be done immediately.

I also mentioned that our children are not wearing caps during P.E. on the field when it is very hot out. Our children should wear caps when they are out in the hot sun playing P.E. There must be caps made especially for this purpose. This is also very important and should be looked into ASAP.

I have written about our children not having bus shelters; if it is raining, they have nowhere to shelter while waiting on the bus. In any case, we have only about two bus shelters in the district of West Bay and these are mainly for passengers waiting on the public buses. I feel that our government needs to do more for our schoolchildren.

If a bus could pick up our primary school children in the mornings, that would also be good as some of them have to walk a long way to get to school. Transportation is provided in the afternoons but not in the mornings. This issue should also be looked into.

Another concern of mine is – where do they play P.E. when it is rainy? Can government get a proper cafeteria for our young ones? And the list probably goes on.

Aside from the education issues, I am very concerned about the speeding and careless driving that I see on our roads. It is frightening and very dangerous for all road users. I thought speed limit signs and better lighting on our roads would help, but it seems like it only got worse. Many drivers are taking our roads for race tracks, it seems.

What can we do to make our streets safer? Maybe we need to place speed bumps on all our roads and not very far from each other. This is a very serious problem and we have to do something about this!

I appeal to all drivers, including riders of motorcycles, to please drive slowly and carefully, and ask all other road users to be very careful on the roads.

Continuing about our roads: when is the government going to do something about the litter problem and continue the yellow painting on the roundabouts and sidewalks? Can nothing be done before the end of the year? Like I said before, there should be a budget in place to keep our streets clean and make them safer.

Perhaps I should also take this opportunity to thank the department responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the park next to the public library in George Town for making it safer and more beautiful. What it still needs is a covering where people sit. The covering will help to shelter us from the heat or the rain and to help keep the place cleaner from the birds and iguanas. As I mentioned earlier, it is a place where many people go and sit and it is also frequented by visitors as well, so it should be safe and beautiful!

Last but not the least, I hear that our government is going all out and allowing the liquor shops to open on Sundays. What next?

There is more that I could write about, but I will make this one short.

Dora A.E. Ebanks (Ms.)