THE EDITOR: Children deemed to be at risk of becoming absorbed into criminal gangs may well benefit from boot camps. This decision will have to be at the behest of parents and guardians and with the agreement of the children.
Before I extol the virtues of boot camps it should be understood that the youngsters will have to be given a monthly stipend. The point is that while being educated and trained that they also learn the value of earning, saving and spending money wisely. It is also a necessity for the parents.
The boot camps should be equipped to train both boys and girls up to a standard at which they can apply for permanent employment with the police, army or coast guard, should they so desire.
During their time in the camps a comprehensive sports programme should be in place to allow them to take part in competitions with secondary schools in the full range of sports on offer. Those who are exceptional can be absorbed into teams representing the country at international level.
These camps should accept only children from the so-called hot spots whose parents and guardians want them away from the influence of gangs and harsh environments.
The Ministry of National Security will have to be the line ministry for such an initiative.
I would like to see the Commissioner of Police find some time to urgently study this idea on a personal basis. Perhaps his wife can use her contacts to join with private enterprise for partial funding. The Government cannot do this alone.
LYNETTE JOSEPH, Diego Martin