Fri | Jan 21, 2022

Crime impacting production

Published:Thursday | November 25, 2021 | 12:08 AM


Everyone will agree that Jamaica is a blessed country. However, everyone will not ‘legitimately’ prosper if the monster of crime is not brought under control. Even though 70 per cent of the crime is carried out by gangs, we are all at risk. No one can afford to become complacent as it may be to their peril. We operate an agro-processing facility and is unable to work extra hours as staff do not want to work nights due to high crime and limited transportation after dark.

Recently, I heard in the media where someone said that instead of companies investing in extra machinery to increase production, they should consider working an extra shift. Logical statement. I am not afraid to admit that I am one who have invested in additional machinery solely for the purpose of increasing daytime production rather than working an extra night shift. On the face of it, that does not make economic sense. However, the reality is that working late has long been a problem for my staff as no one wants to go home in the dark. I cannot argue with them. Crime continues unabated in the parish despite the recent state of emergency. Just recently, one employee’s husband was fatally shot. In the same month, an employee was also shot and seriously injured but managed to survive. The fear is real. Yes, we need to work additional shifts as only then will we achieve economies of scale. However, smaller companies, and especially those in the rural areas, will not be able to get on board due to the constant high crime rate and limited public transportation. Getting the crime situation under control would create the environment needed where one could employ more staff for that second shift, thereby helping more people to earn an honest living.


Gray’s Pepper