British Virgin Islands

Wednesday, Jun 16, 2021

People committing crimes due to their circumstances

People committing crimes due to their circumstances

While condemning the murders that have taken place in recent months, Labour Minister Vincent Wheatley has stated his belief that people are committing crimes because of “circumstances”.
“When the economy becomes stronger, we can hire more persons because persons who are out there robbing, are not robbing because they want to — and I condemn those things. But it’s through a stronger economy we can employ persons. I think people want to be decent. I don’t think anybody wants to be a robber.”

“I taught for many years and I’ve never heard a single child say, ‘when I grow up, I want to be a robber’. So it’s circumstances that bring people into this kind of situations,” Wheatley said during the April 22 sitting of the House of Assembly.

During that same sitting of the House, the Ninth District Representative pointed out that seven pieces of legislation went through second and third readings while two went through first readings.

He said the slew of legislation the government is trying to pass is part of efforts to build a stronger economy so persons can be gainfully employed without compromising their integrity or turning to crime and violence.

Recently, former Commissioner Michael Matthews indicated that some of the crimes in the territory over the last year were committed by otherwise law-abiding citizens who’ve been financially impacted by the pandemic and are now desperate to support themselves.

He said the territory could see a reduction in crime if the local economy got better.

Leaders have linked economic recovery to the inoculation of a majority of persons in the community but still, a large number of residents have decided not to take the available COVID vaccines.

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