The Government of Belize has inked an agreement with the Organization of American States (OAS), through the Department of Public Security, for the execution of a project to strengthen information on crime and violence.
According to an OAS press release, the project will entail providing computer equipment and software, as well as logistical and methodological support for the government in order to set up the public security observatory.
The signing ceremony, which took place at the Ministry of Police and Public Safety of Belize in Belmopan, was attended by the Chief Executive Officer from the Ministry of Police and Public Safety of Belize, Lt. Col. George Lovell, and Kim Osborne, OAS Country Representative.
Speaking on behalf of the OAS General Secretariat, Osborne affirmed that “the collection of reliable and comprehensive criminal statistics in countries, including relevant sex-disaggregated baseline information, and use of gender responsive indicators data disaggregated by sex and age, is of paramount importance to OAS member states.”
The OAS representative further said that the OAS recognizes that the fundamental tenets of democracy in the Americas cannot be fully realized if the security of the people, the governments and member states on the whole is not assured.
She also underscored the transnational nature of crime and the need for enhanced capacity and cooperation at the international level.
According to the release, the objective of the project is to create and/or strengthen national observatories on crime and violence in the English-speaking Caribbean and its first phase will concentrate on five countries: Antigua & Barbuda, Belize, Jamaica, St. Kitts & Nevis, and Trinidad & Tobago.
The initiative has been made possible through financial support from the “Anti-Crime Capacity Building Program” of the Government of Canada, the release concluded.