New plan for young offenders

| 21/05/2010

Cayman Islands News, Grand Cayman Island Headline News(CNS): Cayman’s juvenile offenders could be held in progressive, modern cottage-like units rather than in a more traditional security institution, the Minister for Community Affairs has revealed. Mike Adam told a meeting of the Young United Democratic Party that his ministry was examining a modern type of young offenders’ centre that had been pioneered in the state of Missouri and had enjoyed some of the highest rates of success in the entire United States when it came to juvenile offenders. Adam said that $2 million had been allocated in the 2010/11 budget to begin the work on the centre which had a target completion date of 2013 and would be located in East End on the site of the former prison farm.

Attending the YUDP monthly meeting on Thursday evening, which was focusing on at risk and vulnerable youth, Adam discussed a number of issues with the members, ranging from the Young Parenting Programme to the renovation of the Francis Bodden Girls’ Home, which is due to re-open within the next few weeks following its closure in January 2009 as a result of a fire set by one of the residents.
Adam also talked about the longer term plan of building a separate young offenders institution as required by the Bill of Rights in the Cayman Islands Constitution 2009, which provides for the separation of young offenders from adult prisoners.
Currently male offenders as young as 14 can be housed alongside adult criminals at Eagle House in HM Prison Northward and young girls in HM Prison Fairbanks. Adam said the goal was to build an institution that used modern and therapeutic techniques to rehabilitate juvenile offenders in a different way, using self motivation and treatments based on reward and development rather than the old fashioned methods of punishment.
He explained that the Missouri Model, as it is known, houses the young offenders in smaller cottage-type homes, which are graded according to the youngster’s rehabilitation and development. Adam said the system had been reviewed by various justice systems and had far better results that other more traditional punitive institutions in which young people are incarcerated.
Sometimes called the "Missouri Miracle", the system is unique in that the centres don’t look like jails and focus on highly trained and educated staff working in teams with small groups of youths.
According to Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children’s Defence Fund the youngsters are treated with respect and dignity, and instead of traditional correctional approaches,the system uses a “rehabilitative and therapeutic model that works towards teaching the young people to make positive, lasting changes in their behaviour.” Fewer than 8 percent of the youths in the Missouri system return again after their release and fewer than 8 percent go on to adult prisons.
Adam said that his ministry was talking with officials in Missouri to see how the method could be introduced here in Cayman.
In the interim however, Adam said that the ministry was also establishing a new temporary therapeutic unit for boys and girls at the Bonaventure home in order to separate young people with behavioural, disciplinary and criminal issues from children at both Bonaventure and Francis Bodden girl’s home, for care and protection purposes. He said the new unit would cater to the specialist needs of young people at risk.
Adam noted that such care for the community’s young people at risk was expensive for Cayman as the therapeutic needs of the youngsters were diverse. Cayman had bigcity problems and numerous challenges, the minister said, but maybe only a few young people, sometimes only one, suffering from unique and specific behavioural problems or treatment needs. Even if there was only one child or teen with a unique condition, the government had to employ the necessary specialist that could deal with each and every one of the diverse needs of its most vulnerable young people.
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  1. Caymanian Farmer says:

    Why would anyone take the best Farm land on island and turn it into a residential property???
    Makes no sense to me. we have plenty of land for houses but very little precious farm land.

    let us rethink this idea.

    • Adam Smith says:

      Because the land is more valuable for development than farming.  Cayman’s agricultural economy is pretty low grade in terms of product quality and price. 

  2. Anonymous says:

    NEW PLAN?

    You all had to wait till it got to this stage till you came up with a NEW plan?

    can anyone tell me the OLD plan?i know there was one which as per usual didnt get followed up on, you all make me sick. you only care about things going well and tourists and all but not a care or plan you want to carry out for the future of Cayman . hang your heads

  3. Anonymous says:

     Will there be premium HD Dish Network channels?

  4. Anonymous says:

    This sounds great!!  Ideal!  Will it truly come to pass?  The staff would ALL have to be trained PROPERLY ie. college level education.  Can they be afforded?  Such individuals with the necessary education and on-going training in the newly founded successful techniques to rehabilitate our young and mold-able people?  This could be such a great thing for our young people and the future of our country.  Perhaps making the project a bit smaller so that proper staff can be afforded would be a better idea though. 

  5. Anonymous says:

    There is a Children Law, 2003 that was passed in November 2003 and signed by the then acting governor, with many good provisions, but it never came into force. I believe it was amended since then, but it is still not in force. How about working on bringing this Law which has been on the books for so long in force. I guess children are not that important because they cannot vote.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Great effort Minister Mike and congratulations to your govt.   We need to restore hope in our young people, for too long they have been pushed away in a prison that offers nothing but further deterioration of the soul and mind and we now see the results of that – harden criminals who kill without even thinking.

    Yes the govt. is broke and that a fact, but like everything else their has to be priorities and certainly this project should be one of them.   We are losing too many of our young people to voilence and crime.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Is that land not private land with a lot of shareholders? I think this is another pie in the sky.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Northward Lite, swimming pools, air-conditioned comfort, ipads for all. I wishI was younger. The reason these kids are in trouble in the first place is that there is no discipline at home. Having said that, it is probably a good idea to keep them separate from the hard core. May I suggest that you close down projects that are draining the economy first.

  9. Anonymous says:

    So. A new building will save the youth. What about professionals, mentors, presence of family? Will it not be more appropriate to hire specific resources?

     

    For 2 millions, it might be a few of them!

  10. Anonymous says:

    $2m??? yeah right right… it will end up at least $4m once the clowns at pwd are finished with it….

    • Anonymous says:

      Keep on giving them rope & they will continue to hang themselves. I thought the premier claimed that the government is broke? Oh, that was just dirty political talk! Typical of Mr. Bush & the UDP. Please keep giving them more rope.

    • Anonymous says:

      and your proposal????or solution????

      • Just because.... says:

        What is yours?

      • Anonymous says:

        My suggestion would be to NOT spend $2 million on a building (afterall, aren’t we BROKE?). More buildings for what? The UDP are a bunch of hypocrites.

      • Anonymous says:

        Proper management this time…maybe we can start from there!

         
  11. Anonymous says:

    Whilst I agree that some form of juvenile correction facility is needed, I do not believe that it needs to be to the tune of 2 million.

    I would have hoped that such funding would be set aside for programs, schooling, and camps (during schoo breaks) that gets kids off the street and re-focused BEFORE they turn to crime.

    Other countries seem to successfully implement after school programs (music, sports, schooling, training towards certain jobs etc) so why can’t something like this be done in Cayman? The extra-curricular activities in Cayman are soooo expensive, and there do not seemto be any such programs, camps, lessons available to lower income families. Sometimes, all a child need is to be kept active and engaged, under the supervision of people who can guide and lead. Also, somebody needs to go out and actively approach and encourage those children to joing such programs.

    BTW – how come none of the churches around offer any such programs for kids who have no place to go after school or who’s parents aren’t home until evening time?

     

  12. Anonymous says:

    Mike Adam you may have ran alongside the UDP, but you are now a Minister of the Legislative Assembly. 

    This means that you and all elected members can not just affiliated with just your party the UDP, what I now think is a joke.

    Why was this addressed at the YUDP meeting and not in a press room meeting?

    I for one am sick of it! 

    I’m going off topic with this folks but I believe something has to be said about this now!

    The UDP elected members are still in campaigning, in the sense that it is all about "UDP"… I voted for UDP and PPM because all three of those people in my opinion had inteligence, eloquence and could get the job done!

    They were Charles Clifford, Osbourne Bodden and Mark Scottland.

    (I won’t be making that mistake again, party politics looks it’s here to stay so 2013 I will voting straight! And you better believe it will not be UDP! I know that when the PPM administration was in office none of this foolishness was going on. I feel bad for these candidates and ashamed. Even worst is that when I approached a UDP candidate to say hello, she said to me "I can’t talk to you girl with that red shirt!" IT WAS ARED BLOUSE!)

    Listen the campaign is OVER, yesterday was your one year anniversary and from what I can tell I agree with Mr. Alden!

    Has anyone notice that at all Government events and press briefings that the minister’s are in green and that red has been taken out of all the events?

     One it’s time to grow up, two time for UDP to listen to their leader "WE ARE BROKE" (Yes Mike it is a good idea, but bottom line it is not at the top of Cayman’s priorities at the moment), three what needs to be done is to create jobs for these young people that you looking into the future to punish, all this research you have done and yet you missed the part why these young people rebel. Research done all over the world shows that in most cases why crime rises is because of lack of education and unemployment. (google it). Four these young people that rebel im my opinion do the crime… pay the crime! Five these young people should not even be going to eagle house, another vacations facility they should be Northward depending on the seriousness of the crimes they commite. Six take away these luxuries afforded to them in prison, no stew conch, turtle, lobster, breakfast should only consist of poridge and i wouldn’t allow them AC! I could go on but let me get to number six. Six stop over crowding Cayman’s prison with other nationalities! we need to send these criminals to england of jamaica to a real prison, and hey let pay the bill, I can promis you that as sure I am that 2 and 2 is 4 is that it will not cost $80,000.00 CI a prisoner to held in their prisons!

    Thank you I have now spoken my peace!

     

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree 100%, why was this ony with the YUDP? This should have been held that everyone could have came!!

       

      Where Mike Adams idea is a good one, why can’t some of the parents be held accountable for their children’s actions.  When you have a 14 year old girl going to night clubs, doesn’t the parents check where she is at?  Even a boy going out after a certain time of night, don’t you check where your children are?  Or are you so stupid that when they say they are at so and so house you don’t even have the common sense to check with the parents of so and so house to see if they are there.  For the past few months you read 16 year old girl raped and usually it happens after midnight….is there something missing here, a simple phone call to the parents of the children that your children are going to would probably prevent alot of what is going on!!! When your child comes home with that expensive phone, or clothes you didn’t purchase, electronics you didn’t purchase do you not wonder where he or she gets it from??????  You can keep blaming society, tv, video games but some of the blame is at home!!!

       

    • Anonymous says:

      There’s only one word to express how I feel about this post, AMEN!!!!

  13. Some ignorant bloggers may complain – "Where is the money coming from for these projects?" Just have this to say – If we don’t look out for the children of the Cayman Islands, we will all have to pay direly for them in the future. Crime is increasing and there are some things we just have to pay for now; or else, reap the consequences 

    • Anonymous says:

      Please have a look at the viewpoints on the left hand side…you will learn about blogs.  Those are only comments on the actuality.

       
    • noname says:

      I am your ‘ignorant blogger’ as you called me.

      I also do not see a ‘complaint’ as you say.

      The point of doing something positive and helping the youth is a good one.  What are you doing about it?  That should have ‘started’ years ago!

      Never too late to start! About time too!

      Now, you tell me…as I am an ‘ignorant blogger’ …tell me where the money is coming from?

       

       

  14. anonymous says:

    This is a great idea. At least you are trying to help and looking in all directions to see how you can help these young offenders that can grow up to be the grown offenders that are running here murdering people because they dont know how to deal with their anger issues.

    Of course you are always going to get criticized by the citizens of this country that have anger issues also and it is just short of them to start waiving guns too!

    It may cost money but if it’s saves lives it’s worth it. Congratulations to you Mike. Here we have someone who cares and wants to do something positive with Governments money instead of touring the world. When last have you heard someone trying to do something with the youth of this island?

    There are kids out there on our Islands, yes little Caymanian kids, that don’t have father figures in their lives and some dont have mothers who are there to guide them. A place where they can be housed and rehabilitated, counseled, educated, shown attention and love, will make a difference in anyone’s life.

    They say you dont know the story till you’ve walked in the shoes of that person.

    Anyways it really doesnt matter what you negative people say because some of you dont think before you talk. Most of you have anger issues because as soon as anyone comes up with an idea, without fail, you can rely on the negative anger group to start posting their negative comment.

    People talk so much, talk before they even think, yet when the RCIPS needs people to talk, everyone is afraid to talk.

  15. Anonymous says:

    I have NEVER encountered a country where the people like to turn on each other like the people of Cayman.  It seems that noone wants to see someone from their country suceed!.  You people spend all you time tearing apart each other and not working together.

    Mr. Adam’s proposal has merit.  With the increased drug problem you have in Cayman, one would think you would want to explore all options for getting it under control.  Tourists are going to stop coming if they don’t feel safe.  The Missouri program has an extremely high success rate.  They are producing productive young people who otherwise may have continued in their life of crime. 

    I suggest you look to the future and your children and do what you can before you lose them completely.

    • Anonymous says:

      The person who posted on Fri, 05/21/2010 – 11:53 has made an absolutely accurate statement. I am a Caymanian but our greatest fault as a people is the habit of trearing each other down rather than supporting and loving each other. Well said and thank you. Hopefully your words will hit home with some.

  16. big whopper says:

    The PPM tries to build schools…and  the UDP is building offender cottages?….take that 2mill AND FINISH THE FING SCHOOLS!

    • Mudblood says:

      $2m would have paid for some of the kitchen units in the PPM "Schools of Gold".  If the PPM were to built this facility it would cost $20m because "Caymanians deserve the best".

  17. NorthSideSue says:

    I’m guessing most of the 2 million will go to pay a consultant from Missouri Youth Services Institute.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Don’t understand! There is supposed to be ‘no money’.  Where is this money coming from? Surely there are plenty of empty buildings that could be adapted and used?

    • Anonymous says:

      To Anon 09:12, there is no money according to Mckeeva Bush, we are bankrupt, but I wonder if Bush has given Mikey-Mike permission to say these things. If we are bankrupt as Bush says, you quite rightly ask where is the money going to come from, but my guess is that this is simply a pipe dream of Mikey-mike’s & Mckeeva Bush has not given him permission to do this; just wait until Mckeeva Bush hears about this, poor old Mikey-Mike is gonna be in deep trouble.

      I keep telling the other UDP wimp ministers, they have no say unless Mckeeva Bush tells them so. They can only say or do what Mckeeva tells them, if they do not obey him then they are in trouble. When are they going to learn this? It would prevent embarrassments like this, Mikey-Mike wants todo something but Mckeeva Bush says we are bankrupt, what an embarrassment. Please tow the line!

  19. Anonymous says:

    There goes another 2 million dollars towards debt. I say instead of starting new projects, finish the ones that we just can’t seem to get done!

  20. Anonymous says:

    VERY GOOD IDEA MIKE thank you and hope this comes about.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Wow, 2 Mil for cottage-like units for young offenders now, looks like it pays being a criminal over here

    I wonder what prompted Mr. Adam to do this…..?

  22. Pess. E. Mist says:

    I got a plan for them too. Beat dem likkle rass!

    • Ollie M. Puse says:

      Thankfully some of us have emerged from the Middle Ages and disagree with you.

  23. Anonymous says:

    very good to hear…….

  24. Anonymous says:

    Once again… This government is reacting instead of being proactive ! One needs to stop and ask WHY we are having these problems instead of throwing money at the problem to remove them from society. 

    Government is out of touch with teens today and the problems they face!!

    Here is my humble opinion. 

    Problem #1 – The high cost of living has created many latch key kids. Leaving them unsupervised for several hours each week.  Do you really know what goes on while you are not home? Something needs tobe done to promote more flex time for working parents so someone can be home at 3pm.

    Problem # 2 – The internet. Most parents view this as a learning tool and a necessity of today’s life style. They think if their kids are home on the computer they have nothing to worry about – they are home safe. Well – time to wake up . For those parents who think their son/daughter is simply talking to their school friends on Facebook, Myspace etc (no harm). Think again. The internet has no age and no face… they are talking to grown adults, college students, perverts, idiots, drug dealers, gang members, unruly and out of control teens  etc. etc. etc.  And here is the kicker – Teens being young and naive – and have no idea what they are getting themselves into. At first they think it is funny and they like the attention – but then it escalates and language they use, the sexual comment being made and the pictures they post, OMG!  Before they know it they are in WAY over their head and have no idea how to make it all stop! Ever wonder why they are ALWAYS SO ANGRY ? And you not know why because it is so out of character? Parentsyou need to limit the internet time (including Blackberry’s etc), turn off the internet when the time is up and take the cell phones at night so the kids can sleep.  Log into you child’s internet accounts once in a while and see who they are talking to and what they are saying.  You will be shocked ! Yes, even the parents sitting there shaking their heads "Oh no! Not my straight A son/daughter, the would never… " Yea you too.

    Problem # 3 – Drugs – we need to start educating our children earlier. We need to warn them that many dealers will lace "weed etc." with other more addicting drugs to get them hooked and it only takes trying it "one" time to ruin the rest of their life. Also we need to educate ourselves on the signs, the smells, and the new drugs that have hit our street since we were young. Why doesn’t government throw some of that money at parent workshops ? To help educate us?  

    Problem # 4-  What’s with all the racism lately? This is not the Cayman I grew up in !  Let’s start back at the basic’s… please.

    I’ll leave it there…  I can honestly say " I miss the good old day!" 

     

    • Anonymous says:

      Mr Adams was addressing young members of the UDP.

      Seems very appropriate that he chose the perfect audience.

      Anyone know what percentage of membership of the YUDP are from the Premiers constituency???

    • Anonymous says:

      You make some very good points.

      I too am applauded particulary at the lack of supervision and control parents now a days put on their children and teenagers usage of internet, cellphones, and blackberries.

      I believe parents should be limiting and monitoring how much time their children spend on theirphones or online, and they should also know what they are doing on them and with whom they are communicating. I have observed some young people who become so obsessed with their phones that no matter what is going on around them they are just oblivious. It is like they are in their own world, regardless if they are at dinner with their family or even on a vacation, they remain glued to the phone or computer. I think there is a time for everything.

      I also agree that their online activity should also be monitored for their own safety.

    • Frequent Flyer says:

      YES!

      Get them when they’re young, not when they are juvenile offenders!

      Education is the key to freedom. But when you are that age, no one can make you understand that.

      Parents have the biggest influence and do not even use it.

      Stop letting your children hear you complain about the situation, money/job/damnexpats/mckeeva etc. Let them hear how you plan on solving it or making it better. Let’s raise problem solvers, not coattail riders.

      j

    • Anonymous says:

      Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I hope that many parents out there will read #3 above because I am one of those parents who will look over my children’s shoulders and you are very right, parents will be surprised to learn what their children are saying on MSN messenger and the other sites. I know I was. You are right about the language too – you’d be surprised how sneaky your "good" kids can be and the different personalities they will portray. Do not take anything for granted Moms and Dads and set up your own monitoring programs to be in the know. I few prayers won’t hurt either.

    • Anonymous says:

       "Facebook"  Don’t get me wrong I love Facebook but you are absolutely right.  I saw a young girl on hands and knees looking at the camera with just a bra and very short shorts looked more like a bikini.  It was a very provocative pose and I’m certain that she is still in high school.  She wasn’t the only one.  I saw another girl as well but I don’t know how old she is.  I was quite shocked because I didn’t expect to see that on Facebook.

    • Hallowe'en Jack says:

      Your point 3 shows you have no real idea about how drugs work or how people use them.  As if one toke on a spliff "laced"with mystery drug X is going to have that effect. 

      Drugs – kids are going to use them, kids are probably going to enjoy them (that is the point of drugs after all), demonizing them only makes help harder for the very small minoritythat get into trouble (which they would with drink anyway).

  25. Anonymous says:

    A good plan Mr Adam. We know that you have a big heart and that you work very hard and have this country at heart. Whenever we ring your phone if you are not available at the moment you never fail to call back. You talk to anyone and is not too big for no one. Thats why you are a popular man.A lot of these offenders need a home before they get in trouble, there should be workers going around the neighbourhoods checking these familys and assisting where necessary. I always believe in prevention rather than cure. It takes special genuine caring people who not only works for a pay check but they should have a caring heart like yourself and good common sense in assessing. Also someone who is good with people and is confidential. With all the other inmates there should be some plan for them as well when they come out of prison. Some of them do not have any place to stay and cannot get a job. In fact I hear of one right now who is out from prison and is sleeping in some old car. This should not be happening in Cayman when money is being thrown in the wrong direction.Some of these guys that get in trouble have bipolar and other physicological  problems and prison is not the answer. They would be good kids if they had the right people looking after them. They that if they are hungry that there is not many kind people out there that they can go to so you know what a hungry man is a angry man, so they steal or whatever it takes to feed them, even to sell drugs.I am so happy that this situation is now being looked into. This is why I do not vote for no party, I select the ones that I think is good for the job.

  26. TRUTH says:

    I may not be in support of the UDP but I am really proud of the work and issues that the YUDP is bringing forward.  I have heard some really positive things about the work they are doing to help young people and I am pretty sure Mike Adam will open his ear and listen to them.  Good Job YUDP!!

    Big Mac…. Take notes from your young party members.  They are doing a great job!!

  27. Anonymous says:

    Good Job Minister Adam.  I can at least say that you are doing something that is really essential to our future of the country.

    We need facilities like this to seperate our young people from the elements found in general populations of prisons.  So I welcome the idea.  Furthermore, if the program is having such great results in the USA we need to at least give it a try!! Good job!!