Group Title: Caribbean today (Miami, Fla.)
Title: Caribbean today
Full Citation
Permanent Link:
 Material Information
Title: Caribbean today
Uniform Title: Caribbean today (Miami, Fla.)
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 38 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Caribbean Pub. Services
Place of Publication: Miami Fl
Miami Fl
Publication Date: March 2010
Copyright Date: 2010
Frequency: monthly
Subject: Economic conditions -- Periodicals -- Caribbean Area   ( lcsh )
Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Caribbean Area   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
Additional Physical Form: Also available by subscription via the World Wide Web.
Dates or Sequential Designation: Began in 1989.
General Note: Description based on: Vol. 10, no. 3, published in 1999; title from cover.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00099285
Volume ID: VID00048
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 40985415


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i MARCH 2010

W e c o v e r y o u r w o r l d

Vol. 21 No. 4

Tel: (305) 238-2868
Jamaica: 655-1479


U.S. Census 2010 has ignited
mixed emotions in Caribbean
community. Some, especially
the undocumented, are worried
about revealing information
about themselves. Others claim
to understand the valuable
benefits of the process, page 5.

Reggae music icon Jimmy Cliff
is to be inducted into the Rock
and Roll Hall of Fame. The 62-
year-old Jamaican-born James
Chambers, will join pop groups
ABBA and Genesis among the
2010 inductees on Mar. 15 in
New York, page 17.

General Ban
Ki-moon has
launched the
appeal in the
wake of a
natural disaster to raise $1.5
billion to assist earthquake
victims in Haiti, page 22.

- Jamaica's Prime Minister Bruce Golding
has refused to grant an extradition request
from the United States on the grounds that
evidence for the case against accused
Christopher "Dudus" Coke was
gathered in violation of the
Caribbean country's laws,
page 2.

- Becoming a naturalized United States citizen used to take up to six years, a daunting
process for permanent residents or "green card" holders from the Caribbean seeking to
take their status to the next level. But, things have phan ed and thejear is fadj page,.


News ......................................2 Feature ............13 Arts/Entertainment ............17 Eye On Haiti ........................22
Viewpoint ......................9 Census 2010 ...............15 Health .................................. 19 Sport .....................................23
Financial Planning ........ 11 FYI/Local .............................. 16 Spring Cargo/Shipping ....20 Vacation Planning ............24


Jamaica defies U.S. order to

extradite criminal suspect

amaica's Prime Minister
Bruce Golding says he is
prepared to pay a heavy
political price at the hands of
the electorate rather than
allow the United States gov-
ernment to violate his coun-
try's constitution.
Golding has defended the
stance taken by his administra-
tion of refusing to sign the
extradition request made by the
U.S. for Christopher "Dudus"
Coke from the Jamaica Labour
Party (JLP) stronghold of
Tivioli Gardens, which is a part
of the prime minister's West
Kingston constituency.
Washington said that
Cooke, 40, is wanted on drug
and firearms trafficking
charges. If convicted he faces
a life term in prison.
However, in commenting
on the vexed issue during a
recent sitting of Parliament,
Golding said he refused to
extradite Coke on the face of
the evidence provided so far,
stating that legal rights of
Jamaicans should not be
determined by the U.S.
"I am not defending the
wrongdoing of any person, but

I will say this, if I have to pay
a political price for this I will
uphold a position that consti-
tutional rights do not begin a
Liguanea (the location of the

U.S. embassy in Jamaica)," he

The matter is gaining
increasing international atten-
tion since the recent release of
a U.S. narcotic report, which
blasted the Jamaica govern-
ment for what it calls the
unprecedented delay in granti-
ng the extradition request.
But according to the prime
minister, Attorney General
and Justice Minister Dorothy

Lightbourne decided against
signing the request because
the evidence outlined in the
extradition request was illegal-
ly obtained.
He said the government
has refrained from making
any detailed public statement
in relation to the "Dudus"
issue because of confidentiali-
ty and that position was reaf-
firmed in the several meetings
between Jamaica and the U.S.
However, Golding said that
in view of the statements con-
tained in the Narcotics Control
Strategy Report, he felt obliged
to speak. According to the
prime minister, the U.S. was
seeking to extradite Coke on the
basis of evidence that was ille-
gally obtained under the
Interception of Communications
Act. He explained that the U.S.
report accused the government
of unfounded allegations, ques-
tioning U.S. compliance with the
neutral Legal Assistance Treaty
and the Jamaican law.

Information obtained from
CMC. For more on the U.S.
narcotic report, see page 8.

Caribbean advocate in U.S.

Congress facing ethics probe,

steps down from powerful post

NEW YORK An ardent
United States Congressional
advocate for the Caribbean
has said he will temporarily
step down from his powerful
post as chairman of Ways and
Means Committee in the U.S.
House of Representatives.
Harlem Democratic
Congressman Charles B.
Rangel, the dean of the New
York Congressional delega-
tion, has been caught in a web
of ethics inquiries.
"I have...sent a letter to
Speaker (Nancy) Pelosi asking
her to grant me a leave of
absence until such time as the
Ethics Committee completes
its work," the congressman
told a brief press conference
in which he fielded no ques-

He said to ". <_-
answer ques- (
tions in any
detail would
raise issues
that "would
distract me
from what I
have to do in Rangel
terms of com-
pletion of the president's
health bill, as well as making
sure our committee gets a
good jobs bill."
Republicans had been
pressing for a vote to remove
him from his chairmanship.
Rangel said he acted to avert
forcing his colleagues to
defend him during an election

LOS ANGELES, California -
The National Association for
the Advancement of Colored
People (NAACP), a leading
United States civil rights
organization, has honored
Grammy award-winning
Haitian artiste Wyclef Jean for
his humanitarian work in his
native land.
Jean, 37, a songwriter,
musician, pro-
ducer and
received the
group's presti-
Award on Feb.
26 at the 41st
NAACP Wyclef Jean
Image Awards
at the historic
Shrine Auditorium.
The NAACP said the
Vanguard Award is presented

to a person \\ h< ground-
breaking work increases
understanding and awareness
of racial and social issues.
"The NAACP is proud to
honor Wyclef Jean with this
year's Vanguard Award for his
continued activism and dedica-
tion. His passion for social jus-
tice and helping those in need
should be applauded", it stat-
ed, noting that Jean was on a
plane to Haiti shortly after the
devastating earthquake hit his
homeland on Jan. 12.
"And it was his dedication
to the people of Haiti that
helped spur all of us to donate
what we could and keep the
people of Haiti in our hearts
and pri r, ', it added.
Caribbean Today keeps
its "Eye on Haiti" following
the devastating earthquake,
page 22.

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Dominica names new

U.N. ambassador

Former Foreign Affairs
Minister Vince Henderson
has been appointed
Dominica's ambassador and
permanent representative to
the United Nations.
Henderson assumes his
new position Mar. 1. He
replaces Crispin Gregoire, who
held that post since 2000. Up to
press time no reasons had been
given for the replacement.
Henderson did not con-
test the 2009 general elections
and bowed out of active poli-
tics after nine years.
"The ambassador desig-
nate has also served as head of

delegation to
regional and
and has held
on the boards
and commit- Henderson
tees of various
institutions", a government
statement explained.
Prime Minister Roosevelt
Skerrit holds the post of for-
eign affairs minister.


NAACP honors Wyclef Jean for

humanitarian work in Haiti relief

Power in Numbers



Mass migration leads to chronic nursing shortage in the Caribbean

- World Bank

Caribbean region is suffering
from a chronic shortage of
nurses as many are migrating
to the United States, Canada
and Britain.
That's according to a
recent World Bank report.
The report said between
2002 and 2006 more than
1,800 Caribbean nurses left
the region to work abroad.
They migrate for higher
paying jobs leaving a nursing
brain drain in the region. The
report cites data that show

21,500 nurses trained in
English-speaking Caribbean
nations are working in
Canada, Britain and the U.S. -
three times as many as are
working in their home coun-
World Bank estimated
there are currently 7,800 nurs-
es working in English-speak-
ing Caribbean countries like
Antigua and Barbuda, The
Bahamas, Barbados, Belize,
Dominica, Grenada, Guyana,
Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts
and Nevis, St. Lucia, St.

Vincent and the Grenadines,
and Trinidad and Tobago, or
1.25 nurses per 1,000 people.
In addition, demand for
nurses exceeds their supply
throughout the region: 3,300
or 30 percent of all positions
in the sector were vacant at
the time of the study.
The bank said the short-
age of nurses in English-speak-
ing Caribbean nations is limit-
ing the quality of healthcare
and could be hindering devel-

opment in the region.
Christoph Kurowski, lead
author of the report titled
"The Nurse Labor and
Education Markets in the
English-Speaking CARICOM
- Issues and Options for
R h ,riim said regional gov-
ernments should consider how
they leverage the 6migr6s to
strengthen local health sys-
In the coming years,
demand for nurses in the
English-speaking Caribbean
will increase due to the health

needs of the aging population.
Under current education and
labor market conditions, how-
ever, supply will slightly
decrease. The World Bank
expects that unmet demand
for nurses will more than
triple during the next 15 years
- from 3,300 nurses in 2006 to
10,700 nurses in 2025.
- CaribWorldNews

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Ex-N.Y. commissioner, once tipped to reform

Guyana's police, gets four-year prison sentence
NEW YORK, New York prison authorities on May 17. months to 33 months agreed
Bernard Kerik, a former New In Aug. 2006, Guyana's to by lawyers on both sides,
York City police commission- President Bharrat Jagdeo said ends a dramatic downfall for
er who was once tipped to Kerik would be "an integral the former police commission
spearhead the reformation of part of the er who helped lead New York
the Guyana Police Force, was planned f City's response to the Sept. 11
last month sentenced to four restructuring -- 2001. terrorist attacks on the

years in prison.
Kerik, 54, had pleaded
guilty to eight felonies in
November and agreed to pay
$187,931 in restitution for,
among other things, tax fraud
and lying to the White House
during his nomination to head
the United States Department
of Homeland Security under
then President George W.
Federal Judge Stephen
Robinson, in handing down
the sentence, ruled that Kerik
must surrender voluntarily to

of the Guyana .
Police Force."
The Guyana .a
News Agency
(GINA) had Kerik
said Kerik
"would be contracted to assist
in the US$20 million reforma-
tion plan that government is
footing through a loan from
the Inter-American
Development Bank".
Last month's prison sen-
tence, which was above the 27

United States.
In the November plea
deal, Kerik admitted that a
contractor paid about
$255,000 for renovations to his
New York apartment and
failed to report that figure as
income on his tax returns. In
addition, he acknowledged
that he lied about the matter
when he was vetted by the
Bush administration for the
top Homeland Security
Department post.

U.S. Appeals Court refuses bail for Stanford

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana -
A United States court has again
refused to release disgraced
Texas financier Sir Allen
Stanford from jail until his trial
gets underway next January.
The U.S. Fifth Circuit
Court of Appeals here ruled
that there are "no new cir-
cumstances" that warrants
Stanford's early release from a
Texas, jail.
Stanford is accused by the
U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission (SEC) of
defrauding tens of thousands
of investors in a "massive" $7
billion Ponzi scheme, involving
his Antigua-based Stanford

International Bank. He has
been in jail since last June,
when U.S. authorities filed
criminal charges against him.
In that same month, a U.S.
district court judge in Dallas,
ruled that Sir Allen was a
flight risk and must remain
behind bars until his trial.

In his latest appeal last
month, defense lawyers had
argued that Stanford's physi-
cal and mental health were
deteriorating and that his fam-
ily and friends would provide
security in ensuring that he
does not leave the country.

But the appeals court
rejected the argument.
"We're disappointed,"
said defense attorney Kent
Schaffer. "But, based on the
way this case has gone, we are
not surprised."
Stanford, three of this top
associates, and Antiguan regu-
lator Leroy King, are expect-
ed to go on trial in January.
King is fighting extradition
charges in Antigua, while
Stanford has repeatedly
denied any wrongdoing in the
criminal and civil charges.


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Haitian judge releases eight of 10

Americans in illegal abduction case


CMC A Haitian judge
ordered the release of eight of
the 10 Americans arrested
here on child abduction
But, up to press time last
month, Judge Bernard Saint-
Vil had declared that the two
other members of the group,
including its leader, would
remain jailed for additional
The American missionar-
ies were held after being sus-
pected of attempting to ille-
gally smuggle 33 Haitian chil-
dren out of the country with-
out the proper documentation
following the devastating Jan.
12 earthquake that killed
230,000 people and left more
than a million others home-
less. They said they were plan-

U.S. lawsuit targets

'partner in crime'
DALLAS, Texas One year
after the United States
Securities and Exchange
Commission (SEC) accused
disgraced Texas billionaire Sir
Allen Stanford of running a
"massive" Ponzi scheme
through his offshore bank in
Antigua, a group of investors
is suing the Eastern Caribbean
Central Bank (ECCB), alleg-
ing that it was Sir Allen's
"partner in crime".
The so-called Stanford
Victims Coalition marked the
anniversary by last month
launching a campaign to boy-
cott Antigua and Barbuda,
particularly its lucrative
tourism industry.
The class action suit, filed
in U.S. federal court by New
York attorney Peter
Morgenstern, on behalf of as
many as 28,000 investors,
seeks at least $100 million in
damages from the ECCB and
its five-member banks.

The lawsuit claims that

...Antigua calls lawsuit 'unbelievable'

ST. JOHN'S, Antigua, CMC -
A senior official of the
Antigua and Barbuda govern-
ment has described as "unbe-
lievable" a class action lawsuit
filed in the United States by a
group of disgruntled investors
against the Eastern Caribbean
Central Bank (ECCB) and the
government of this twin-island
The so-called Stanford
Victims Coalition, which filed
the action in a New York court
last month, claims its 28,000
members fell prey to disgraced
Texan financier Sir Allen

Stanford, who has been charged
by financial regulators in the
U.S. for running an alleged
"massive" Ponzi scheme
through his Antigua-based
Stanford International Bank.
But Attorney General
Justin Simon said he was not
impressed by the claims.
"I am really, really very
upset because it clearly indi-
cates that this kind of action
comes from the uninformed
and is itself unbelievable,"
Simon said.

ning to house the children
in an orphanage in the
Dominican Republic.
Saint-Vil told lawyers for
the Americans that he freed
the members of the group,
five of whom were from a
Baptist congregation in the
U.S. state of Idaho, after par-
ents of some of the children
testified that they had volun-
tarily handed over their chil-
dren to them. In his ruling, the
judge said he released the
eight Americans on the condi-
tion that they return to Haiti
to answer further questions in
the case, if necessary.
The eight Americans left
on a US Air Force plane for
Miami, where they arrived on
Feb. 18.

Caribbean bank as

for Ponzi scheme
after authorities shut down
Stanford International Bank
(SIB) in Antigua and Barbuda
last year for allegedly issuing
$7 billion in fake certificates of
deposit, the ECCB seized the
Bank of Antigua. Morgenstern
said the seizure was illegal,
and that the institution, which
is still "enormously valuable",
should have
become the
property of
alleged vic-
tims. Instead,
the lawyer
claimed that
the bank's Stanford
assets were
among the ECCB member-
banks, namely the Antigua
Commercial Bank, St. Kitts-
Nevis-Anguilla National Bank,
Eastern Caribbean Financial
Holdings Company, National
Commercial Bank (SVG), and
National Bank of Dominica.




Fading fear: Easier road to American citizenship for Caribbean immigrants

Becoming a naturalized
United States citizen
used to take up to six
years, a daunting process
for permanent residents or
"green card" holders from
the Caribbean seeking to take
their status to the next level.
But, things have changed.
The fear is fading.
The U.S. Citizenship and
Immigration Services
(USCIS), under the U.S.
Department of Homeland
Security has made it much
easier for immigrants to take
the oath.
"It takes less than four
months on average to get U.S.
citizenship once you apply,"
says Ana Santiago, regional
media manager for South
Florida and the Caribbean.
"Potential citizens should
not have any fear. Once they
know what the requirements
are and follow the correct
steps, the process is painless."
To demystify the process,
the USCIS has been hosting
information sessions around
the country. In South Florida,
sessions were held last month
at regional offices in Miami,
Hialeah, Kendall and Oakland
Park. Santiago says meetings

Who to trust?:
As the United States
Census Bureau begins
to mail out forms this
month, the hope is that
response rates will significant-
ly increase from the 2000 cen-
sus that resulted in a 72 per-
cent national participation
rate, while Florida came in at
69 percent
according to
the bureau's
With an
marketing and
campaign, the
bureau is hop- Persaud
ing to reach
the traditionally hard-to-
count, among them the
Caribbean community. Yet
there is lingering concern that
marketing and advertising
may not be enough.
One of the issues the
bureau must tackle is the dis-
trust many Caribbean people
in the U.S. have for govern-
ment agencies which seek per-
sonal and demographic data.
Not surprisingly, the largest
among them are the undocu-
"How safe is it?" asked
Michael*, an undocumented
immigrant, when approached
about the issue by Caribbean

have also been held in off-
shore U.S. territories such as
Puerto Rico, St. Croix, and St.
Yet with all the available
help and information some in
the Caribbean community are

"It's not so much fear. To be
totally honest, it was lazi-
ness. At the time I didn't see
any real benefit besides
getting through the airport
faster. It was a lot of igno-
rance on my part...It just
wasn't a real priority"
Dexter A. Pierre, a green card
holder for 42 years.

"I tell my clients...if you
have criminal convictions that
are serious, do not apply"
Joan 0. Pinnock, a New York-based
immigration lawyer.

still reluctant to become U.S.
"It's not so much fear,"
says Dexter A. Pierre, a green
card holder for 42 years. "To
be totally honest, it was lazi-
ness. At the time I didn't see
any real benefit besides get-
ting through the airport faster.
It was a lot of ignorance on

U.S. Census 2010
Today recently.
"The only way I will take
part is if I know the person
questioning me; that will give
me the confidence. If people
are comfortable and get the
assurance that their informa-
tion will really not be shared,
then they will cooperate."
Michael, 53, from St.
Lucia, came to the U.S. in
1994 on a visitor's visa and
never returned to the island.
Asked if he knows enough
about the census and the rea-
son it is being conducted,
Michael snapped, "I don't
think they are doing a good
job at all; there is not enough
information about what is
about to take place. And,
that's another reason why one
can be fearful, because you
are ignorant about exactly
what is going on."
Permanent resident or
"green card" holder Barbara
Savage agreed.
"I am not sure that
enough information is being
given on the upcoming cen-
sus," she said. "I have only
heard it on the radio. I have
not seen it in the print media
or on television. More print
information, such as flyers,
could be given out in commu-
Savage has been a perma-
nent resident for three years
and plans to participate in the

my part...It just wasn't a real
Born in the twin-island
republic of Trinidad and
Tobago, Pierre became a per-
manent resident at age two
before arriving in the U.S.
when he was a year older.
"I still have the original
one with my baby picture on
it," he tells Caribbean Today
with a laugh, "and that's when
the card was actually really

Joan 0. Pinnock, a New
York-based immigration
lawyer and advocate, paints a
different picture. She explains
that the main fears are issues
pertaining to criminal convic-
tions. About 80 percent of her
clients are Jamaicans, some
with serious criminal issues.
"I tell my clients...if you
have criminal convictions that
are serious, do not apply,"
says Pinnock. "I have sat in
citizenship interviews and see
them take people away in
handcuffs. If you have a con-
viction that is a very serious
offense like an aggravated
felony, possession of drugs
with intent to distribute, or a
distribution of marijuana or
cocaine, any one of those seri-

ous offenses, you are not eligi-
ble to naturalize.
"I tell them don't even
bother to apply, and don't
leave the country, because if

izen has become much shorter.

you try to go outside of the
U.S...when you are coming
back you are liable to be
stopped at the airport and
taken into custody. And, if
your conviction is a serious
offense you are subject to
mandatory detention, so they
are not going to release you.
"Those that have minor
offenses, such as a simple pos-
session, assault, or something
like shoplifting, they are still

ligibk," she adds. "Their
offenses are considered crimes
of moral turpitude, but I still
caution them. I ask them to
get a dispossession letter so I
can look at their con-
viction record before I
subject them to any cit-
izenship application,
because it's dangerous
for them. I try to pro-
tect them as much as
Pinnock explains that
another concern is the
fear of losing citizen-
ship from their country
of birth once U.S. citi-
zenship is obtained.
The attorney allays
those fears by counsel-
cit ing clients about the
U.S. cit- advantages of U.S. citi-
zenship and advises
them to also maintain a
current Caribbean passport as

Santiago lists some of the
benefits as the right to vote;
the right to serve on a jury;
the right to apply for federal
jobs; priority when petitioning
to bring family members to
the U.S.; and the right to run


ignites mixed emotions in Caribbean community
2010 census despite the lack of "We want to use trusted voic- Caribbean community. Felicia
information. She has done her es in the community to get the Persaud, a Guyanese-born
own research and claims to message out that it is 100 per- journalist based in New York
know the benefits. cent safe to fill out the census and chairperson of CariblD
"This will give the total questionnaire; that your com- 2010, a movement to keep
population broken down by munity depends on it. Caribbean Americans updat-
race, ethnicity, ed on the census, is most
incomes, etc.," she vocal. She has led the cam-
explained. "The paign for the inclusion of a
government will be Caribbean American or West
better able to pre- Indian category on the census
pare budgets based form, noting the severe under-
on the population b count of this population in
of each city and .2000. Although this signifier
ultimately the has not made it on this year's
state. Budgets will - form, Persaud and other
be proportionate to ...Caribbean leaders are urging
the number of per- .. the community to participate
sons in these com- in the census to make their
munities, which Some still are wary about filling out the census form. race and ethnicity clear by
will help in infra- writing in country of birth in
structural projects, education, "We can say things to any- the space provided on
creation of jobs, and improve- one 'til we're blue in the face. Question 9.

ments in schools. This will
also capture migration of peo-
ple across the country."

The U.S. Census Bureau
has put in place a team to
focus specifically on the
Caribbean community. And,
according to Katia St. Fleur,
the unit's partnership team
leader, it's making inroads.
"We use faith-based
organizations, non-profit
organizations, political, and
community leaders," said St.
Fleur, who is of Haitian

But, if their pastor is saying it
to them, then it's a little bit
more believable. If an NGO
executive director sitting
behind a desk says to them
'don't forget to be counted, no
one will share your informa-
tion', they are going to trust
that voice, this is somewhere
they go to get assistance. We
really want people to know
that this is about getting
counted. We don't use it for
any other reason besides allo-
cating resources."
National voices also con-
tinue to push for recognition
of the growing and powerful

By doling out a piece of
the advertising pie to ethnic
media, The U.S. Census
Bureau expects to reach many
of those left out of the count
10 years ago. The 2000 Census
counted 1,852,874 individuals
who identified l1h mL L s as
West Indian (excluding
Hispanic origin groups) out of
a total U.S. population of
281,421,906 less than one
percent. With a total popula-
tion estimate of 307,006,550 as
of July 1, 2009, Caribbean


Fading fear: Easier road to American citizenship for Caribbean immigrants

for elected office. Pierre too
acknowledges the benefits.
"The fact that I cannot
vote is one of the bi,_L,,,I
motivators to become a U.S.
citizen," he says, adding "the
other thing is I am the last
person in my family who has
not done it, and I have seven
Married since last year
October to Anniekay, a natu-
ralized U.S. citizen, Pierre
says his wife has been encour-
aging him, so he promises it
will happen before the end of
the year. When he does
become a U.S. citizen, Pierre
plans to hold fast to his
Caribbean culture, choosing
dual citizenship if it is an
"Even though I don't
have a great deal of knowl-
edge of the culture and
lifestyle of my birth country, I
still pay homage to Trinidad,"
he says.

Another worry says
Pinnock, is fear of failing the
mandatory civics test. As an
immigrant advocate, Pinnock

goes beyond the traditional
definition of attorney she
schools, counsels and teaches.
"My Jamaican clients
are my family," she explains.
...There is a comfort level.
We speak the same language.
I understand what they say,
they understand what I say. I
look out for them. Obviously I
treat all my clients equally.
But, it's a different kind of
bond with people who are
from my country. So, I don't
send them up as lamb for the
slaughter. If I feel that they
are going to be in trouble by
doing something, I tell them
strongly do not put yourself in
that situation, because I want
to protect them."
The attorney confirms
that the process is much short-
er than it used to be. It takes a
maximum of six months rather
than the three to six years of
the past, she says, adding that
in some states, like New
Jersey and Georgia, if appli-
cants pass the test, they can
be sworn in that same day.
However, this is not the case
in the majority of states.
Highlighting basic eligibil-
ity, Pinnock explains that

applicants for citizenship must
be at least age 18 years and
have been a permanent resi-
dent for at least five years. If
married to a U.S. citizen, the
time period is shortened to
three years after becoming a
permanent resident. However,
the couple will be required to
prove that they are in a legiti-
mate marriage by showing
photographs, joint tax returns,
joint bank statements and, if
children are born to the mar-
riage, copies of birth certifi-
cates for those children.
Another important
requirement says Pinnock is
that the applicant must be a
person of good moral charac-
ter, which means being free of
any serious convictions.
For details on becoming a
naturalized citizen visit:
For a list of benefits and
responsibilities of citizenship:

Dawn A. Davis is a freelance
writer for Caribbean Today.

www.carl bbeanto

World Bank approves

$200M for Jamaica

World Bank has approved a
$200 million loan for Jamaica
to support its comprehensive
reform program in addressing
fiscal and debt sustainability.
The Washington-based
financial institution said the ini-
tiative is a coordinated effort
by multilateral development
banks and the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) to help
the Bruce Golding administra-
tion sustain its long-term devel-
opment agenda.
The bank said the "First
Programmatic Fiscal
Sustainability Development
Policy Loan" will support a
series of measures to enhance
fiscal and debt sustainability,
increase the efficiency of pub-
lic financial management and
budgeting processes, and
increase tax revenues through
improved tax administration.
"The Fiscal Responsibility
Framework, the comprehen-
sive debt exchange, the public
bodies' rationalization plan,
and the tax administration
reforms are far-reaching and,
if fully implemented, will gen-

erate large benefits for the
Jamaican people," said
Yvonne M. Tisikata, World
Bank director for the
The World Bank said the
loan aims to
increase fiscal
in the public | l
improve pre-
and accounta-
bility in fiscal Shaw
increase control on public
spending and debt generation;
reduce debt service burden;
and improve debt manage-
"Tg ili1 r, with support
from the other international
development partners, we are
implementing a comprehensive
reform program to put the
country back on a sustainable
path and achieve significant
growth over the medium-
term," said the island's Finance
Minister Audley Shaw.

Bahamian charged with human smuggling

MIAMI, Florida United
States authorities have
charged a Bahamian man with
human smuggling after an
abortive trip to Miami that
left one person dead.
The U.S. Attorney's office
here said it filed the criminal
complaint against Davon
Rolle, 19, late last month.
The office said it has also
charged four other Caribbean
nationals with illegal re-entry
to the U.S. It identified them as
David Coore, 27, of Jamaica;
Delroy Coombs, 45, of
Jamaica; Mathura Bridgelal,
50, of Trinidad and Tobago;
and Tyrel Levarity, 23, of The

Guyanese man
NEW YORK The United
States Federal Bureau of
Investigations (FBI) said late
last month that it is looking for
a Guyana-born man in connec-
tion with an alleged $7 million
mortgage fraud scheme.
FBI officials said
Ishwardat "Danny"
Raghunath, 46, who lived in
Queens, disappeared before he
could be arrested for being the
alleged mastermind of the
scheme. He is accused of rip-
ping off lenders and left sever-
al homes in foreclosure.
According to an indict-
ment in the Brooklyn Federal
Court, Raghunath "recruited

The U.S. Attorney's office
said a sixth suspect, a 24-year-
old man from The Bahamas,
was charged with violating
immigration law and is being
held by the Immigration and
Customs Enforcement agency
(ICE). His name was not dis-
closed, as well as that of a sev-
enth man who was released.
Authorities said a police
helicopter spotted the 28-foot
Intrepid boat in the waters off
Miami on the night of Feb. 23
and followed it. They said as
police tried to stop it, the occu-
pants jumped into the water
and tried to swim ashore.

wanted by FBI
straw buyers with good credit
ratings to purchase homes in
Queens, Brooklyn and the
"In exchange for a
US$5,000 fee for using their
names, the buyers were prom-
ised that they would not have
to make payments on these
investment opportunities", the
indictment stated.
It noted further that
Raghunath "submitted bogus
mortgage applications to
lenders, inflating the sales price
of the properties, then deposit-
ed the loan money in a bank
account he controlled".

The April issue of Caribbean Today will
feature a comprehensive eamintion of how the
healthcare industry serves the Caribbean community,

With a proven track record
spanning 20 yeaf of service to
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en it sa bbeantoday.mor



wwwcari bbeanto

Caribbean American congresswoman feels vindicated by U.S. ethics ruling

NEW YORK Caribbean
American Democratic
Congresswoman Yvette D.
Clarke says she has been vin-
dicated by a review of the
United States House of
Representatives' Ethics


Committee on a trip to the
Caribbean in 2007.
"I am pleased that the
House Ethics Committee con-
cluded that I committed no
wrongdoing and followed the
proper procedures surround-
ing a trip that I took to the
Carib News Foundation

United States has called on sev-
eral Caribbean community
(CARICOM) governments to
beef up their legislation regard-
ing the illegal drugs trade as
well as track down major nar-
cotics traffickers and to disman-
tle their organizations.
In the 2009 Department of
State's International Narcotics
Control Strategy Report
(INCSR), Washington reported
on the efforts by CARICOM
countries to deal with the trade
drug trade in that year.
It stated that drug interdic-
tions in Trinidad and Tobago
remained difficult, in part due
to the lack of effective legisla-
tion in combating crime and
narcotics trafficking. The
report noted that with criminal
gang activity a major concern
for T&T government, the
criminal enterprise legislation
would also allow each member
of a criminal organization to be
charged for illegal acts commit-
ted by any one member of the
organization, if it can be shown
that one member committed
the criminal act in furtherance
of, or in support of the crimi-
nal organization.

The report noted that
other initiatives that would
strengthen the counter-
drug/crime capabilities of law
enforcement agencies include
the establishment of a drug
court to deal with drug
offences; strengthening border
protection by automating
inspection methods to include

Conference in 2007 (in
Antigua)," Clarke told the
Caribbean Media Corporation
"It is unfortunate that
these allegations have taken
attention away from the sub-
stance of the annual confer-
ence, which provides a plat-
form for CARICOM
(Caribbean community)
nations to maintain an open
dialogue with the Unites
States," added the representa-
tive for the llth Congressional
District in Brooklyn, New
York, the largest district of
Caribbean immigrants in the
The Ethics Committee last
month admonished New York
Democratic Congressman
Charles B. Rangel, a strong
advocate for the Caribbean,
for violating Congressional gift
rules by accepting corporate-
sponsored trips to the
Caribbean in 2007 and 2008.
The committee said
Rangel was among a half
dozen members of the
Congressional Black Caucus
who accepted trips to attend
business seminars in Antigua

container scanning; providing
additional training for officers
to deal with counterfeit mer-
chandise and copyright items
and counterfeit money.
It also called for the estab-
lishment of an internal affairs
unit to combat internal fraud
and bribery; initiating more
border patrols on the western
side of the island; and, partici-
pating in the SOUTHCOM ini-
tiative called Carib Venture,
which is a multinational mis-
sion in the Southern Caribbean
focused on stemming the flow
of drugs in the region.
Washington claimed that it

U.S. wants the region to clamp down on
illegal drugs, money.

was encouraging the government
of Suriname to continue to pur-
sue major narcotics traffickers
and to dismantle their organiza-
tions, and to build on and
strengthen its regional and inter-
national cooperation to date.
But Washington said that
in order to achieve greater
results, Suriname needs to con-
tinue capacity-building meas-
ures of its counter narcotics-
focused units, to monitor and
protect its porous borders and
vast interior with a radar

and Barbuda in Nov. 2007 and
St. Maarten in Nov. 2008.
However, the committee
said that Clarke "did not
knowingly violate any provi-

detection system and adequate
air support.

In Jamaica, the report
noted that gang-led violent
crime and corruption will con-
tinue to pose a significant threat
to social stability in that country.
It noted that the Jamaica gov-
ernment is exploring legislation
to criminalize participation in
organized crime gangs.
Washington said that in
order for the Bruce Golding
government to successfully
investigate, prosecute and con-
vict corrupt officials at all lev-
els of government service, it
needs to ensure that the Anti-
Corruption Special Prosecutor,
the JCF Anti-Corruption
Branch and the FID are inde-
pendent, fully resource and
backed by political will.
Washington said that it
welcomes The Bahamian gov-
. r nl m n1, strong commitment
to joint counter narcotics
efforts and to extradite drug
traffickers to the U.S. It urged
the Hubert Ingraham govern-
ment to further enhance its
drug control efforts by inte-
grating creole speakers into the
various law enforcement agen-
cies dealing with drugs and by
working with Haitian National
Police officers to be stationed
in Great Inagua to develop
information on Haitian drug
traffickers transiting The
Haiti, which was hit by a
devastating earthquake on Jan.
12, resulting in the death of
more than 230,000 people, has

sion of the Code of Official
Conduct or any law, rule, reg-
ulation or other standard of
conduct applicable to her con-
duct in the performance of her

been told that
it must contin-
ue the reform
and expansion
of the unit
dealing with
drug interdic-
tion and step
up the reform Ingraham
of its judicial
system as prerequisites for
effective counter narcotics oper-
ations throughout the country.
Washington said it would
provide significant support in
the coming year under the
Merida Initiative a partnership
between the governments of the
U.S., Mexico, Central America,
Haiti and the Dominican
Republic to confront the vio-
lent national and transnational
gangs and organized criminal
and narcotics trafficking organi-
zations that plague the entire
region. It noted that the Merida
Initiative will fund a variety of
programs that will strengthen
the institutional capabilities of
participating governments by
supporting efforts to iIn%,igk
sanction and prevent corruption
within law enforcement agencies
among other initiatives.
For the Eastern
Caribbean, which includes the
nine-member Organization of
Eastern Caribbean States
(OECS) and Barbados, the
report called on law enforce-
ment authorities to strengthen
"efforts to counter drug traf-
ficking and related crimes such
as money laundering, arms
trafficking and corruption".

duties or the discharge of your
responsibilities with respect to
her travel..."

Caribbean advocate in U.S. Congress facing ethics

probe, steps down from powerful post

The Ethics Committee
late last month admonished
Rangel for violating
Congressional gift rules by
accepting corporate-sponsored
trips to the Caribbean in 2007
and 2008. The committee said
Rangel was among a half
dozen members of the
Congressional Black Caucus
who accepted trips to attend
business seminars in Antigua
and Barbuda in Nov. 2007 and
St. Maarten in Nov. 2008.
The Ethics Committee
said the trips were organized
by the New York-based Carib
News Foundation, a charity
affiliated with the weekly
Carib News newspaper. But,
according to an ethics com-
plaint filed by the National

Legal and Policy Center, a
Washington-based conserva-
tive advocacy group, the con-
ventions were underwritten by
corporations like Pfizer,
Verizon and AT&T, and that
the sponsorship was "widely
noted" at the events.

While the committee's
findings, released on Feb. 25
admonished Rangel, it said it
had no evidence that he knew
of the sponsorships. It, howev-
er, held him accountable
because two members of his
staff knew about them.
"Representative Rangel
was responsible for the knowl-
edge and actions of his staff
and the performance of their
official duiI, ', the report

The ethics panel is still
investigating more serious
accusations regarding Rangel's
fund-raising, his alleged fail-
ure to pay federal taxes on
rental income from a villa he
owns in the Dominican
Republic and his reported use
of four rent-stabilized apart-
ments provided by a
Manhattan, New York, real
estate developer. The Ethics
Committee said none of the
other members of Congress
on the trips were admonished
because they did not know of
the sponsorships. They were,
however, all ordered to repay
the cost of the trips, totaling
about US$11,800.

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Mailing Address: P.O. Box 6010
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Vol. 21, Number 4 MAR. 2010



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Opinions expressed by editors and writers
are not necessarily those of thepublisher.
Caribbean Today, an independent
news magazine, is published every month
by Caribbean Publishing & Services, Inc.
Caribbean Today is not responsible
for unsolicited manuscripts or photos. To
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U.S. demands more from Caribbean in illegal drugs trade fight


Black frustrations with a

black American president

Politics has strange conse-
quences. Few are stranger
than those of racial poli-
tics. The jobs bill pending in
Congress offers an excellent
Imagine, for example, the
reverends Jesse Jackson or Al
Sharpton during previous eco-
nomic downturns. By now, a
pending employment bill might
well have stirred marches and
demands by black leaders for
special aid to communities hard
hit by the
But not
this time. As
much as
Obama's pres-
idency has
stirred anger
on the right, it
has brought a CLARENCE
new patience PAGE
to activists on
the left. Black
leaders still want the nation's
first black president to pay
attention to black issues, but
they don't want to be perceived
as getting in his way.
Few outside of black-ori-
ented media noted the three
black men who trudged into the
White House through blizzard-
like wind and snow to meet
with President Obama in mid-
February. Sharpton, Marc
Morial, president the National
Urban League, and Benjamin
Jealous, president of the
NAACP, met with Obama for
an about hour to talk about
black unemployment through-
out the country.
"We're not looking for
race-based programs," Sharpton
said afterwards. "But, like the
president, we want to make
sure that everyone is included."
That's fine with Obama,
who ever since his early cam-
paign days has emphasized a
color-blind approach. Help

everyone equitably, he has
insisted, and African Americans
will be helped, too. Yet, fashion-
ing color-blind solutions to
unemployment is a tough task
when the problem has a dis-
tinctly color-coded composition.

For example, Team Obama
br aIlid a guarded sigh of
relief as overall unemployment
rate eased slightly from 10 per-
cent to 9.7 percent in January,
according to the U.S. Bureau of
Labor Statistics. But Ohio State
University's Kirwan Institute,
which studies the recession's
impact on African Americans,
found that black unemployment
actually had gone up three-
tenths of a percent, to 16.5 per-
The 43-member
Congressional Black Caucus
briefly withheld their votes
from a financial services bill in
December to express their frus-
tration at lack of attention to
joblessness, mortgage foreclo-
sures and other ills in their
hardest-hit communities. But
when the House passed its $154
billion jobs bill in December,
they left out the caucus's
request to direct 10 percent of
the funding to low-income com-
John Powell, Kirwan
Institute's executive director,
expressed hopes this measure
and others targeted to the needi-
est communities would be
restored to the final bill, despite
puhIlbI, k by those who say
they want a more "universal"
approach. "We should have uni-
versal goals," he argued, "but
targeted strategies."

Yet, among black America's
prominent public intellectuals,
only Georgetown's Michael Eric

Iaorch 192o0k 2010

W Co so3^0

PnME Sdlf u h sti ^I^.

|j)tecun Jlmh"u chM


Enter the 'cougar': Female predators on the prowl

There used to be a school
of thought that it was
only men who went after
But there is a flip side to
all this, and it's not only men
who are predators nowadays,
but the females are also hold-
ing their own. They are just as
hungry and dangerous as their
male counterparts.
Enter the cougar. That's
the name given to a woman
who goes after young men.
But why, why would a mature,
middle aged, near senior citi-
zen, pre-menopausal older
woman go after a mere snippet
of a boy, a mere cub? Because
all cougars tame their cubs,
and these young boys are there
to be tamed.
So is it a control issue?
Are these women looking for
pets to own, seeking emotional
slaves who they can trap,
shackle and bind to their bed-
posts with the promise of
financial and material reward?
That does happen; for to be a
predator, you have to be a
woman of means, have a
healthy bank account, live well
and can provide for the prey
when you get him.
All female predators aren't
necessarily born that way.
Many get that way because of
numerous skirmishes in their
lives. Some were used, abused
and then left by cruel men. So,
fuelled by despair, spurred on
by anger, inspired by rage, and
hell bent on not being hurt
again by any man near her age,
she goes for someone whom
she can control. And he has to
be young, for their mantra is:
"Both of our ages must not
add up to 100."

Some female predators
were spurred on merely
because of loneliness. Alone
after her husband left, the cor-
porate executive is now in
need of other company than
the one that she works for.
She's on the dark side of 50,
and the reality is, no man her
age wants her, as they're all out
chasing young girls anyway. So
her only option is to go after a

younger lad.
So she
snares one,
and her life
changes dra-
Suddenly she
has regained
her youth,
starts to feel TONY
sensations that ROBINSON
she long
thought were
dead and gone, begins to tingle
where nerves had gone to sleep,
feels alive again. After all, if she
wanted a dud, she'd simply be
with an old man, right?

But all is not perfect in the
lair of the predator. Some
young conquests are bright
intelligent chaps and are not
bereft of emotions and feel-
ings. Some may want a little
more than material stuff and
wish to be treated as an equal,
not as a social experiment, as
some predators refer to them.
But even as liberated as
some female predators are,
there is still some element of
trepidation and shame, as social

mores dictate certain behavior.
The female predator can't be
escorted to her company's ball
by prey, who is young enough
to be her son. What will her co-
workers think?
And the argument about
men doing the same thing for
years doesn't wash either.
Many female predators treat
their charges like social pariahs,
and take them nowhere, prefer-
ring the confines of the house,
maybe a late movie or dinner at
some obscure out-of-the-way
restaurant, and occasionally may
allow him to drive her car.. .at
Yes, female predators exist
and their numbers are growing.
Just read the advice columns.
Perhaps these women just
became tired of sacrificing their
lives for men. And like all old
predators who got too weak to
hunt in the wild, they turn to
the easy pickings of weak vul-
nerable prey. The hunting
ground is fertile and the female
predator is on the loose.

seidol@hotmail. com



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wwwcari bbeanto

Take a look around.
What's happening is
unprecedented in Miami-
Dade County's history.
Together with public and pri-
vate partners, we're investing in
infrastructure at a pace that
hasn't been seen in decades.
A new, modem airport is
evolving at Miami International.
Plans are underway to construct a
tunnel under Biscayne Bay to
alleviate traffic congestion


"The Caribbean is a little
relaxed in terms of enforcement,
perhaps too relaxed for our own
good" Oswald Hannis, educator
and counsellor with the AIDS
Secretariat, last month calling for
Antigua to follow the lead of the
United States and demand med-
ical screening for migrants.

"We think that
France has acted
out of turn and it
has acted prema-
turely" St Kitts
and Nevis Prime
Minister Dr.
Denzil Douglas
last month blasting the French

Downtown downtown and
improve access to the Port of
Miami. To preserve water quality
and conserve usage, our water
and sewer system is undergoing
extensive upgrades. Metrorail is
undergoing its first major expan-
sion in two decades.
Neighborhoods throughout
Miami-Dade are benefitting
from the Building Better
Communities Bond Program.
Now at the five-year mark, this

government for including the
twin-island federation on a list of
jurisdictions that it considers to be
"uncooperative tax ii n..,. '.

* "There has been no stealing,
there has been no thievery, there
has been taking over, there has
been no expropriation" Antigua
and Barbuda's Attorney General
Justin Simon saying that he was
not impressed by the claims of a
group of disgruntled United States
investors who filed a class action
lawsuit last month against the
Eastern C, nii..,,, Central Bank
(ECCB) and the government of
the twin-island nation claiming its
28,000 members fell prey to dis-
graced Texan financier Sir Allen

Compiled from CMC and other

in Miami-Dade County
ambitious program has support- local building professions and
ed projects ranging from new trades, my office is working
recreational facilities and library with the County Commission
upgrades to improved drainage and the Office of Capital
and beach restoration. Improvements to accelerate our
Improving infrastructure is building projects. Over the past
one of the most important roles 18 months, more than $500 mil-
of local government. These lion in capital contracts have
projects support thousands of been expedited contributing sig-
jobs and position us to emerge nificantly to the local economy,
from the current economic As mayor, my priority is to
downturn better and stronger. promote activities that advance

To boost employment in the

economic recovery and make

investments that preserve the
quality of life of our residents.
We're doing some amazing
things in the face of adversity. I
am so proud of what Miami-
Dade is accomplishing and
ile rc nowhere else I would
rather call home.
Carlos Alvarez,
mayor, Miami-Dade

Black frustrations with a black American president

Dyson has had enough bold
audacity to declare, "Obama runs
from race like a black man runs
from a cop." If anything, Obama
actually runs from race like a
black politician who is looking to
avoid a potential white conserva-
tive backlash.
Another consequence of
Washington's changed racial
landscape is a higher profile and
new level of accountability for
black organizations like the
Congressional Black Caucus
(CBC). An embarrassing fol-
low-the-money New York
Times investigation of its
finances has raised serious ques-
tions about how well the caucus
and its various charities are
serving their constituents. Yet
caucus leaders have been less
forthcoming than a Tiger
Woods news conference.

Taking advantage of politi-
cal finance laws that its members
help to write, the CBC's network
of nonprofit groups and charities
has become a fundraising power-
house. Yet the Times found it
spends more of that cash on lav-
ish galas, golf outings and con-
ventions than it spends on schol-
arships and other badly needed
public services.
Worse, a huge share of
their donations come from com-
panies that produce the sort of
products that the lawmakers
write laws to regulate, including
tobacco, liquor, "early pay-
check" loans, "rent-to-own"
furniture stores and other prod-
ucts that have a controversial
impact on poor black neighbor-
hoods. In a statement,
Representative Barbara Lee, a
California Democrat who chairs
the caucus, called the Times
story unfair but did not ask for

a correction. More than a week
after the Valentines' Day
report, attempts by journalists
to get further answers have not
been successful.
If anything the caucus and
its foundation have been
exposed for engaging in ethical
conflicts, real or apparent, that
no one seemed to care about in
the years when black congress-
man and the occasional black
senator were the only visible
black power in town. Times have
changed. With a black president
in the White House, the caucus
gains real clout. When questions
are raised about their ethics and
priorities, they need to give
some real answers.

2010 Clarence Page.
Distributed by Tribune Media
Services, Inc


Florida expo to support minority

businesses set for Mar. 11-12

MIAMI, Florida -
"Innovation: The Gateway to
Opportunities" will be the
theme of a two-day business
expo hosted by The Southern
Florida Minority Supplier
Development Council (SFMS-
DC) this month.
The 25th annual event is
scheduled for Mar. 11-12,
from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. each
day, at the Broward County
Convention Center, 1950
Eisenhower Blvd. in Fort
The event aims to bring
local minority-owned busi-
nesses and major corporations
and government agencies
together in a series of work-
shops, networking events to
create business opportunities
and discuss industry trends.
"The event is designed to
ensure minority businesses, at
all stages of development, are
positioned for greater suc-
cess," said Beatrice

Miami opera

The City of Miami is
again joining forces with
the Internal Revenue
Service (IRS) and its partners
to assist residents with their
2009 income tax preparation.
Over 20 city-sponsored
locations are offering free tax
preparation services and multi-
benefit eligibility screening for
other resources such as Food
Stamps (SNAP), Medicaid,
Cash Assistance and FAFSA
(Free Applications for Federal
Student Aid) using the Benefit
Bank as part of this year's
campaign, with services pro-
vided through April 15.
Residents wishing to file

When should

Louissaint, president of the
SFMSDC, in a recent press
release, "and to provide cor-
porations and government
agencies with information
about supplier diversity."
The expo also offers an
opportunity for minority
entrepreneurs to present their
goods and services to purchas-
ing agents from government
agencies and Fortune 500
The workshops will focus
on achieving company growth,
doing business in the health-
care and pharmaceutical
industries, doing business with
local, state and federal gov-
ernment, purchasing trends
and best practices in supplier
For more information,
visit, call the
SFMSDC at 305-762-6151 or

s free tax

on sites
tax returns at these sites can
learn if they qualify to receive
a federal income tax refund of
up to $5,657 via the Earned
Income Tax Credit (EITC)
and up to an additional $1,000
per child via the Child Tax
Credit (CTC).
In addition to free tax prepa-
ration, all Miami sites are able to
provide electronic filing for both
taxes and other benefits to pro-
vide a quicker turn around.
Residents interested in
scheduling a tax preparation
appointment at one of the
city-sponsored sites, or city-
affiliated sites, may call 311.

/ou foreclose

your home?


New U.S. credit card law puts

brakes on abusive practices

new credit card law in
the United States,
designed to provide
consumers with some relief
from abusive industry practices,
such as arbitrary rate increases
and double-cycle billing, went
into effect last month.
The Credit Card
Accountability, Responsibility
and Disclosure Act, also known
as the CARD Act, improves
transparency, requiring credit
card companies to make more
disclosures of their terms to
consumers. It also establishes
other sweeping changes to pre-
vent exorbitant fees.
The Miami-Dade Consumer
Services Department has out-
lined some of the new rules in its
edition of "ConsumerWise" and
advises cardholders to be sure to
read all credit card notifications
received in the mail.

Big rate hikes are not
gone for good To receive
some of the benefits under the
new law, such as interest rate
relief, consumers must be cur-
rent on their bills. Credit card
companies may also raise

interest rates as long as they
provide 45 days advance
New fees Anticipating a
loss in revenue due to the new
restrictions, some credit card
companies may rely on impos-
ing new fees. While there are
no restrictions on the types of
fees issuers can implement,
consumers can avoid unpleas-

U.S. implements new law to protect
consumers from abuse by credit card
ant surprises by paying atten-
tion to the "Terms and
Conditions" section of their
Limited access to credit -
Issuers may impose stricter
rules on consumers when they
apply for credit. They may
demand details about income

or proof of other savings to
ensure they are able to collect
on a debt.
Fewer rewards To save
money, some companies are
tightening the purse strings on
their rewards programs, mak-
ing it more difficult for con-
sumers to cash in on their
accumulated points. If you're
late on a payment, for exam-
ple, you may have to pay a fee
to recoup your rewards points.

Prior notice of rate
increases required Prohibits
increase in APR without 45
days notice. Prohibits applying
rate increases retroactively to
existing balances. Requires
clear notice of right to cancel
credit card when APR is
Freeze on interest rate
terms and fees on canceled
cards Prevents APR from
being raised, or repayment
terms being cancelled, if a
cardholder cancels a card.
Limits on fees and interest



If your home in the United
States is worth less than
what you owe, would you
walk away from the home and
allow it to go into foreclosure?
How much less? What if
your home is worth 75 percent
of the loan amount? What if it
is worth half of what you
What if your home is
worth only 25 percent of the
loan amount? Would you walk
away at that point?
According to new
research by First American
CoreLogic, homeowners

whose homes are worth less
than 75 percent of the mort-

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MDC's volunteer income tax assistance program offers free help to low income,

MIAMI, Florida Low-income,
elderly, and non-English speak-
ing residents will again be
offered help with filing their
2009 taxes through Miami Dade
College's (MDC) free Volunteer
Income Tax Assistance Program
The VITA program is
administered and staffed by fac-
ulty and MDC business stu-
dents. All MDC VITA sites
have the ability to file electroni-
cally. Federal income tax returns
must be in the mail and post-
marked no later than April 15.

Below is a list of this year's
IRS/MDC VITA tax service
locations in Miami, Florida,
their schedules and contact

Carrie P. Meek
Entrepreneurial Education
Center (EEC), 6300 N.W. 7th
Ave., Miami 33150
Room 1201-1. From 4 p.m.
to 7 p.m.; Tuesdays Mar 16
and 23. Call 305-237-1199.
Customers must be signed in by
6 p.m.
MDC Hialeah Campus,
1776 W. 49th St., Hialeah 33012.
Lobby of the main classroom
building 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.;
Tuesday through April 6. Call
305-237-1519. Languages
spoken: English and Spanish. A
maximum of 25 clients per
evenings will be allowed.
Customers must be signed in
prior to 6:30 p.m.
MDC Homestead

New U.S. credit card

* Prohibits double cycle
billing: Prohibits credit card
issuers imposing interest
charges on any portion of a
balance that is paid by the due
Over-the-limit fee
restrictions: Cardholders must
be given the option of having
a fixed credit limit that cannot
be exceeded, and card compa-
nies cannot charge over limit
fees on cardholders with fixed
limits. Over limit charges can
only be applied once during a
billing cycle.
Prohibits charging inter-
est on fees: Prohibits the
charging of interest on credit
card transaction fees, such as
late fees and over limit fees.
Consumer right to reject card

before notice is provided of
open account Gives card-
holders who get pre-approved
the right to reject the card up
until they activate it without
having their credit adversely
Application of card pay-
ments Requires payments to
be applied first to the credit
card balance with the highest
rate of interest to minimize
finance charges. Prohibits late
fees if the card issuer delayed
crediting the payment.
Prohibits card companies from
charging late fees when a
cardholder presents proof of
mailing payment within seven
days of the due date.
Length of billing period -
Requires credit card state-
ments to be mailed 21 days
before the bill is due (current

Campus, 500 College Terr.,
Homestead 33030. Room B-122
from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday -
through April 12. Call 305-237-
Languages spoken: English and
Spanish. Service is available by
appointment only.
MDC InterAmerican
Campus, 627 S.W. 27th Ave.,
Miami 33135. Room 3207 from
1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday -
through April 7. Call 305-237-
Customers will only be
accepted until 4:30 p.m.
MDC Kendall Campus,
11011 S.W. 104th St., Miami
33176. Room 6343 (Business
office in Room 6319) from 2
p.m. to 4 p.m. Through April 8.
Call 305-237-2375/2283.

law puts brakes
requirement is 14 days).
Prohibition on universal
default and unilateral changes
to cardholder agreements -
Prevents credit card issuers
from increasing interest rates
on cardholders in good stand-
ing for reasons unrelated to
the cardholder's behavior with
respect to that card.

Enhanced disclosures
Payoff timing disclo-
sures: Requires credit card
issuers to provide individual
consumer account information
and to disclose the period of
time it will take the cardhold-
er to pay off the card balance
if only minimum monthly pay-
ments are made and the total
amount of interest the card-
holder will incur if only mini-
mum monthly payments are

Monday and Wednesdays are
by appointment only. On
Tuesday and Thursdays, it is
first come, first served and cus-
tomers will only be accepted
until 3:45 p.m. A maximum of
10 customers will be served each
MDC North Campus,
11380 N.W. 27th Ave., Miami
33167. Building 2, second floor,
Room 2201, Computer
Courtyard from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.,
Tuesday through April 6.
Closed Mar.16 and 23. Call 305-
237-1199. Languages spoken:
English and Spanish. Customers
must be signed in by 6 p.m.
MDC Wolfson Campus,
300 N.E. Second Ave., down-
town Miami 33132. Building 7,
Room 7109, ETCOTA Center

on abusive practice
Late payment deadlines
and penalties: Requires full
disclosure in billing statements
of required payment due dates
and applicable late payment
penalties. Requires that card-
holders be given a reasonable
period to make payment.
Requires that payment at local
branches be credited same-day.
Renewal disclosures:
Requires card issuers to pro-
vide account disclosures to
consumers upon card renewal
when the terms of the card
have changed.

Protection of young con-
sumers Consumers under
age 21 who can't prove an
independent means of income
or provide the signature of a
co-signer aged 21 or older

elderly applicants
from 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays -
Mar. 6, Mar. 13, Mar. 20 and
April 10. Closed April 3 for
Easter break. Call 305-237-3151.
Languages spoken: English and
Spanish. The center will be
accepting customers until 11:30
a.m. and will serve a maximum
of 30 customers each Saturday,
whichever comes first.
MDC West Campus, 3800
N.W. 115th Ave., Doral 'I
Second Floor from 9 a.m. to
noon Mar. 27. Call 305-237-8918.
Languages spoken: English and
Spanish. The center will be
accepting customers until 11:30
a.m. and will serve a maximum
of 30 customers, whichever
comes first.

won't get approved for credit
Additional restrictions on
credit card practices are
scheduled to take effect in
For details on the new
CARD Act, visit the U.S.
Senate Committee on
Banking, Housing & Urban
Affairs website or Consumer-
For more consumer tips,
or to check the complaint his-
tory of a company, file a com-
plaint or ask consumer-related
questions, visit the Miami-
Dade Consumer Services
Department website at or
call 305-375-3677.

When should you foreclose your home?

gage amount are most apt to
simply walk away and let the

home fall into foreclosure -
even if they have the means to
pay. The results of the study

seem to show that homeown-
ers face a mental hurdle that
melts away as the equity in

their home disappears.
So if the home you bought
for $400,000 is now worth less
than $300,000, you'll think seri-
ously about a strategic default,
even if you have the means to

At what point is it worth
simply throwing up your
hands and preserving your
wealth for your next move?
The first hurdle is to deter-
mine whether you live in a
U.S. state that allows lenders
to pursue you for a deficiency
judgment. A deficiency judg-
ment means a lender can go
after your other assets if the
company forecloses on the
property and resells it for less
than you owe on the mortgage.
But many states do not
allow deficiency judgments. In
those states, the lender agrees
to accept title to the property
if you can't pay, and does not
try to attach liens to other
assets. If you live in a state
that doesn't allow deficiency
judgments, it paves the way
for you to simply mail the

keys back to the lender if
you're able to let go of the
emotional attachment you
have to the property.

Lenders expect that if you
haven't lost your job or expe-
rienced some other sort of
financial hardship, you will
continue to pay your mort-
gage even if your house is
worth half of the mortgage
amount. But homeowners
who choose a different path,
and who think about their
finances strategically, may
decide they are far better off
handing back the keys to the
lender, taking an immediate
hit to their credit history and
score, and moving forward
with their financial lives.
If even a million home-
owners make the decision to
strategically default, it could
change the mortgage industry
as we know it.

Edited from 2010 Real
Estate Matters. Distributed by
Tribune Media Services, Inc.

On Feb. 29 the Citibank Richmond Heights branch hosted a dinner reception in honor of Black History Month. Depositors were
treated to readings, poetry and song.

Left to right Ken James, radio host Hot-105, Executive Vice President Citibank Joann- Palacino-Chong, Branch Manager Citibank
Richmond Heights Michael Murph, Exec VP Citibank, Marta Carrazana, Patrick Merit, exec director Richmond Heights CDC, and
Pastor Anthony Reed Martin, Memorial AME Church Richmond Heights.


www~cari bbeantoday~com


PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -
As he prepares to host the inter-
sessional summit of Caribbean
community (CARICOM) lead-
ers this month, Dominica's
Prime Minister Roosevelt
Skerrit is no doubt aware of the
concerns raised in the region
over the decision of some
Caribbean countries to join the
newly-formed Community of
Latin American and Caribbean
States (CLACS).
Skerrit has already sought
to allay fears that the new
grouping will supplant existing
hemispheric organizations,
including the Organization of
American States (OAS).
"As it is now, there is no
one body comprising all of us,
save and except the OAS.. .but
Cuba is out of the OAS. We
don't see ourselves supplanting
the existing arrangements
which we now have, I don't see
us setting them
aside, I don't
see us ending
them," he told
the Caribbean
details of the Skerrit
new arrange-
ment are still
to be finalized, CARICOM
and Latin American leaders,
who met in Cancun, Mexico
last month, have already
agreed to meet in Venezuela
next year. One thing is certain
though, the United States and
Canada have not been asked
to be party to the new arrange-

Skerrit has justified their
exclusion by indicating that the
new organization is intended
to bring a closer relationship
between the Latin American
countries and their CARI-
COM neighbors, while insist-

"I have not heard a single
person indicate it is intended
to replace or somehow dimin-
ish the role of the OAS," he
said, adding "certainly among
CARICOM countries that
spoke in Cancun...none of
them indicated at anytime that
the intent was to do just that."

Dr. Mark Kirton, senior
lecturer at the Institute of
International Relations at the
University of the West Indies
(UWI), is also questioning why
Mexico, which has, in recent
times had a relatively low pro-
file in CARICOM, should now
seek to re-engage the small
Caribbean states. He argues
that Mexico now finds it neces-
sary to strategically reposition
itself in this environment of
hemispheric political and eco-
nomic reconfigurations to
counter the thrust by Brazil
and Venezuela to assert their
influence in the Caribbean in


create a community of Latin
American and Caribbean
states, without the United
States and Canada."
In the early 1970s,
Mexico's foreign policy includ-
ed strong interest with the
Caribbean that led to several
initiatives, including its joint
sponsorship, with Venezuela,
of the Sistema Economico,
Latinoameri-cano (SELA),
which was significant in that it
included CARICOM states
and Cuba but excluded the
U.S. When the convention
establishing the Trinidad-based
Association of Caribbean
States (ACS) was signed on
July 24, 1994 in Colombia, it
brought together all the 25
countries in the Spanish,
English and Dutch Caribbean
with the intent to promote
consultation, cooperation and

new era of geo-politics

the pack: Caribbean enters
ing that he was not giving any- recent times.
one the impression that the "It must also be remem-
Caribbean countries were bered that since the 1970s,
aligning themselves with Latin Mexico moved to fashion a
America to seek to do away relationship with CARICOM
with the OAS. which sought to promote clos-
"That is certainly not the er cooperation and provide the
case," he said. "We have partic- scope for increased cultural,
ular challenges. I don't want to commercial and economic link-
get caught up in this notion that ages. The relationship has
we want to set aside the U.S. however oscillated between an
and Canada. There are peculiar era of intense activity and a
and particular challenges and period of 'benign' neglect,"
issues which confront the said Kirton.
Caribbean and Latin American "It is therefore interesting
countries and which do not to observe that more than
affect the United States and three decades later, Mexico is
Canada and the question is can in the vanguard of a move to
we not find solutions among
ourselves, are we not able
enough to address the issues."
Grenada's Foreign
Minister Peter David told
reporters after the Cancun
meeting that "all of us in
CARICOM" were quite sup-
portive of the move to bring
the Caribbean, Latin and
Central America closer togeth-

concerted action among all
"The ACS has provided
the institutional framework for
the development of geo-strate-
gic relations and it is therefore
worthy of note that the 2010
Summit Declaration indicates
an agreement to constructively
strengthen the ACS and to col-
laborate in the fulfillment of its
mandate", Kirton wrote in his
newspaper column.

Now, as regional leaders
get ready to gather in
Dominica for their inter-ses-
sional summit from Mar. 11-13,
questions are being asked as to
whether or not Caribbean
countries have been drawn into
a new realm of geo-politics.
Former Caribbean diplo-
mat Sir Ronald Sanders noted,
for example, the Caribbean
governments' position on a
joint "Declaration on (the)
Falklands Islands Issue", which
"confirmed their support of
Argentina's legitimate rights in
the sovereignty dispute with
the United Kingdom over the
Falkland Islands Issue".
"The support of Latin
American countries for
Argentina in this matter is quite
understandable," noted Sanders.
"They have links of language,
culture, history and proximity
that go back centuries. But the
support of CARICOM countries
for Argentina's ILginiiik rights'
is puzzling.
"Unless there is something
they have not made public, this
position by Caribbean govern-
ments appears on the surface
to run counter to their own
national interests," he added,
noting that the region's posi-
tion could well undermine
future trade and other rela-
tions with London.
CARICOM's trade with
Britain far exceeds trade with
Argentina; investment in
CARICOM countries from
Britain is much greater than

Who to trust?: U.S. Census 2010 ignites mixed emotions in Caribbean community

numbers should also increase.
But an accurate count will
depend on participation, par-
ticularly among the undocu-
mented. Hence the govern-
ment's partnership with
Caribbean media and market-
ing agencies who speak the
same language as the difficult
to reach.
The U.S. Census Bureau's
website lists 11 Caribbean-
focused newspapers across the
country that have been award-
ed Paid Media Advertisement
Buy: Caribbean Star in
Atlanta, The West Indian
American in Hartford, Carib
Press out of Los Angeles, and

in the states with the largest
Caribbean concentration:
Caribbean National Weekly,
Caribbean Sun, Caribbean
Today, South Florida Times in
Florida; and Caribbean Life,
N.Y. Carib News, Weekly
Gleaner, Weekly Star in New
According to the website,
the U.S. will be more racially
and ethnically diverse by
mid-century. Minorities,
now roughly one-third of the
population, are expected to
become the majority in 2042,
with the nation projected to
be 54 percent minority in
2050. It continues: By 2050,
the minority population -

everyone except for non-
Hispanic, single-race whites -
is projected to be 235.7 mil-
lion out of a total U.S. popula-
tion of 439 million.
The Caribbean population
is not specifically detailed in
these statistics. That is why
Caribbean count advocates
are adamant about getting
Caribbean Amerians recog-
nized as an important and
powerful ethnic group.
Maxine Tulloch, president
of the Caribbean-American
Journalists and Media
Association (CAJMA), said
the organization is working to
ensure that Caribbean media
get the advertising dollars to

get the message to the hard-
to-reach community.
"It's important for the
Caribbean community to be
counted because when we are
under-counted, we are under-
funded and there are no funds
available in the city to provide
services such as road works, a
healthy school lunch program,
job creation, and the like,"
said Tulloch.
"It's also important that
the government know that the
Caribbean community are
here in large amounts so that
they can support our business-
es, support what we do as a
cultural group."
The numbers are crucial,

especially for states like
Florida and New York where
many Caribbean immigrants
reside, including those living
under the radar.
"At first there was a lot of
fLr said Michael. "Sometimes
I would hear a siren and I would
start to wonder if somebody was
coming after me. I am no longer
as fearful, but, it's an uncomfort-
able life...Inwardly I might be
fearful, but every day I go about
with boldness and confidence."

Dawn A. Davis is a freelance
writer for Caribbean Today.
* Name changed upon

any investment from
Argentina and Sanders noted
that official development assis-
tance from Britain to CARI-
COM countries directly and
indirectly (through the
European Union and the
Commonwealth for instance) is
much larger than any assis-
tance from Argentina.
In addition, he argues that
the number of tourists from
Britain to CARICOM coun-
tries is considerably greater
than from Argentina; and far
more CARICOM nationals
live, work and study in Britain
than in Argentina.

But David
insists that
position is sup-
portive of the
put in place at
the United
Nations to
deal with the Sanders
issue and "all
that is being said by CARI- that we should that
process must be given a chance
to work.
"We are fully supportive of
the U.N. process with respect
to that," he added.
However, respected
Caribbean journalist Rickey
Singh, in his newspaper col-
umn last month, said that there
needs to be a definitive state-
ment "the sooner the better"
from CARICOM governments
"offering the rationale for and
benefits of" joining this new
entity. He notes that a number
of regional leaders were them-
selves absent from the Cancun
meeting and that Skerrit, a
close ally of Venezuela's
Leader Hugo Chavez, "felt the
need to go quickly on the
dL L n~\ L with regards to the
intention of the new body.



A Caribbean Today special feature

Avoiding scams during census time

MIAMI, Florida -Miami-
Dade Consumer Services
Department is cautioning resi-
dents to learn how to spot
potential scams during the
2010 Census.
By knowing exactly what
to expect from the Census
Bureau, according to the
department, residents can
avoid becoming a victim of a
Every United States
household will receive a 10-
question form in the mail
within the next few months. It
requires that the resident fill
in the form to account for
everyone living at his or her
address as of April 1, 2010
and includes a prepaid enve-
lope to mail the completed
form as soon as possible.
Any request for census
information from the Census
Bureau will be clearly marked
as coming from the U.S.
Census Bureau and notes the
"Official BIInI1L of the U.S.
Residents will receive a letter
from the Census Bureau
director notifying them that in
a few days, their household
will receive a form in the mail,
a phone call from the Census
Bureau or a visit from a
Census Bureau representative.
The Census Bureau will never

ask for any information to be
submitted online.

A census worker will only
visit a home to follow-up if he
or she does not receive the
form, as they are required by
If someone knocks on
your door and identifies him-
self or herself as a census
Ask to see their official
government badge marked
with just that person's name.
Ask for photo identifi-
cation from another source to
confirm their identity.
Some census workers
might carry a "U.S. Census
Bureau" bag.
If you still are not certain
about their identity, call the
Regional Census Center toll-
free number at 1-800-923-8282
to confirm they are employed
by the Census Bureau. The
Census Bureau will never,
under any circumstances, ask
to enter your home.
The census happens
once every 10 years. Private
information, such as names,
addresses, social security num-
bers or telephone numbers, is


wwwcari bbeanto

Miami launches 2010 U.S. Census at The English Center

MIAMI, Florida A kick-off
ceremony for the 2010 United
States Census was held last
month at The English Center
here, emphasizing the census's
importance to the parents, stu-
dents and community leaders.
"We have selected today's
location because of the histor-
ical significance this educa-
tional center represents for
our community at large," said
Miami-Dade County Census
2010 Complete Count
Committee Co-Chair Perla
Tabares Hantman of the

A student reads at a ceremony to kick
off Census 2010 in Miami.
school that was founded in
"The English Center is
also a very appropriate starting
point for this year's census

drive, because this institution
represents thousands of people
who have come to America's
shores in search of a dream."
"The school district is
taking a very active part in the
2010 Census, for a number of
very good reasons," explained
Miami-Dade County's
Superintendent of Schools
Alberto M. Carvalho.
"The census determines
how federal funds will be dis-
tributed and the best way for


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By taking jus 10 rr minutes to answer 10 simple question s, you an help provide better -cads, sco.3os 2nd neal:hcare
for your cornrr u r ty. Help create poEit.e c range for yc jrsalf, y".uir c Idren anl ynur nation Respsnses a'E
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Photograph by Eric J. Esteban

Miami's Mayor Carlos Alvarez
promotes the 2010 United States
Census during last month's
Miami-Dade County Health
Department Employees Meeting
at the Dade-County Auditorium.
On April 1, the U.S. population
= will be counted. The census
affects political representation
and directs the allocation of bil-
lions of dollars in government
funding. It is estimated that
every person counted is equal to
$1,200 in federal funding.
To learn more, go to

17._v__Fr i '-7,75 M Eb.


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Ethnic media being

overlooked ~ NAM

United States Census Bureau
is missing opportunities to pro-
vide reporting instructions to
diverse communities in the
U.S. by failing to fully utilize
the ethnic media that can
reach more than 60 million
adults in those communities,
according to recent testimony
from New America Media
(NAM) in Congress.
Sandy Close, NAM's exec-
utive director, called the 2010
Census advertising program an
"unprecedented investment" in
ethnic and community media,
having identified 3,000 media
outlets across the country. But
she cautioned that many key
media outlets were left out,
including 47 percent of those
that attended roundtable ses-
sions organized by NAM and
the Census Bureau last year to
learn how they could help with
the count.
She noted that several
prominent African American
papers had been excluded.
"Many are frustrated -
they don't know why they fell
through the cracks... All very
urgently want a role," said
Close, testifying before the
Oversight and Government
Reform's Subcommittee on

Information Policy, Census and
National Archives.
NAM said it represents
more than 2,500 ethnic media
outlets across the country. The
roundtable discussions organ-
ized last year included more
than 600 ethnic media repre-
sentatives in 12 U.S. cities.
"Their hunger to partici-
pate in the 2010 campaign
is intense," Close testified.
"...They get the census: they
get their community's stake in
a complete count, and they get
their own."
In citing the importance of
an accurate census count not
only on federal dollars, but pri-
vate ones as well, she noted
the experience of Juan Carlos
Ramos of the El Tiempo
Hispanic newspaper in New
Orleans. He said the 2000 cen-
sus undercounted Hispanics in
New Orleans and as a result
Coca Cola dropped New
Orleans, and his paper, from its
national advertising campaign.
"From our first briefing in
March of '09 until our last one
in early December, ethnic
media attendees also expressed
a uniform anxiety over the lack
of transparency in the decision
making process of the census
ad buy," Close said.


A Caribbean Today special feature

Miami launches 2010 U.S. Census

at The English Center

us to ensure that we get our
fair share is by urging every-
one in our community to fill
out their census form."

Rivas Logan, who is on
the board of directors of the
National Association of Latino
Elected and Appointed
Officials (NALEO), empha-
sized that the census is a head
count of every person in the
United States and includes,
people of all ages, religious
groups, and ethnicities, both
citizens and non-citizens.
The 2010 Census will help
communities receive more
than $400 billion in federal
funds each year for schools,
job training centers, senior
centers, public works projects

never published. The infor-
mation is used to produce sta-
tistics. Answers cannot be
used against the person inter-
viewed by any government
agency or court.
To see what questions will

and emergency services.
Additional data collected by
the census helps determine
the number of seats Florida
has in the U.S. House of
Assistant Regional
Census Manager Marilyn
Stephens, from the Atlanta,
Georgia region, assured the
audience that all the informa-
tion collected by the U.S.
Census Bureau is private and
confidential and cannot be
shared with anyone including
other federal agencies and law
enforcement agencies.
The ceremony also includ-
ed performances by students
from Arch Creek Elementary
and Southwood Middle
School Center for the Arts.

be on the forms, visit the
Census Bureau website.
Answers to common ques-
tions about how information is
collected and used are also
provided there.


Beginning in March, households will receive a
census form by mail or in person from a census worker.
Census data will be used to allocate millions of dollars
In federal funding, Including disaster and emergency
services, transportation, senior centers and more.

A 1 0 questions

A 10 minutes

A 10 years of fair funding and fair representation

ALL information Is confidential and by law cannot be shared
with Immigration officials or any government agencies.
It is time to better understand our changing and diverse
community and shape our future. Be counted in 2010.

Cal 31 or c w


United States


How to Identify Census 2010 Workers
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Avoiding scams during census time


IflN TH 210CESU!!?^



wwwxcari bbeanto

Hundreds turn out for Rex Nettleford farewell in Miami

MIAMI, Florida Hundreds
of Jamaicans turned out last
month to bid farewell to Rex
Nettleford, the late vice chan-


cellor emeritus of the
University of the West Indies
(UWI), during a thanksgiving
service at the Holy Family
Episcopal Church here.
Nettleford died in
Washington, D.C. on Feb. 2 at
age 77. An official funeral
service was held in Jamaica on
Feb. 16.

The service in Miami
included several tributes
reflecting periods of
Nettleford's contribution to
the development of Jamaica's
cultural landscape. Former
government minister Dudley
Thompson said the country
has lost an irreplaceable man.
Marlon Hill, United States
advisory representative for
Jamaica Diaspora Southern,
spoke of Nettleford in the late
professor's capacity as chair-
man of the Jamaican Diaspora
"He understood, admired
and appreciated the global
reach and impact of our peo-
ple," said Hill.
Margaret Barrett, presi-
dent of the UWI Alumni
Association, South Florida
chapter, focused on Nettleford's
dedication to the university's
development, even after his
Sydney Roberts, director
of Jamaica Awareness, Inc., a
cultural non-profit organiza-

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tion based in South Florida,
discussed time shared with
Nettleford, including schedul-
ing cultural events such as
performances by the National
Dance Theatre Company
(NDTC), which Nettleford
Eddy Edwards, South
Florida radio personality and
director of the local radio pro-
gram "Caribbean Riddims",
said the late professor's intel-

The Organization of
American States (OAS) will
host a meeting of the Haitian
diaspora in preparation for an
international donor conference.
Ambassador Albert
Ramdin, the OAS's assistant
secretary general, said that
the Mar. 21-23 meeting at
the OAS headquarters in
Washington D.C. would pro-
mote dialogue on rebuilding
Haiti in preparation for the
Mar. 31 conference to be host-
ed by the United Nations in
New York.

The Digital Library of the
Caribbean (dLOC) is seeking
donations to support damaged
libraries and archives in earth-
quake damaged Haiti.
dLOC, an international
collaboration of educational,
research, governmental and
non-governmental institutions
that provides access to elec-
tronic collections about the
Caribbean, wants donations
and technical assistance for
the recovery and protection of
Haiti's libraries and their his-
torical, governmental and cul-
tural resources.
dLOC's operations are
run out of Florida
International University. For
more information, call dLOC
at 305-348-3008.

lect and contribution to the
enrichment of the Caribbean
diaspora would be sorely
Musical tributes were ren-
dered by the Jamaican Folk
Revue, accompanied by the
Tallawah Mento Band, as well
as the South Florida Caribbean
Chorale directed by Steve
Dub poet Malachi Smith
read "Kumina King" that he

United States President
Barack Obama last month
signed the confirmation of
Haitian American Patrick
Corvington as chief executive
officer of the Corporation for
National and Community
Service. The U.S. Senate had
previously confirmed
Corvington's nomination
by unanimous
for National
Service is a
federal agency
that engages Corvington
more than five
Americans in service through
its Senior Corps, AmeriCorps,
and Learn and Serve America
For more information,

Trinidad and Tobago's
Deputy Consul General in
Miami Kirk Francois has been
re-assigned to the Embassy of
T&T in Venezuela effective
this month.
While based in Miami,
Francois represented T&T's
interests in the diaspora of the
states including Florida,

composed for Nettleford fol-
lowing his death.
Also participating in the
service were former U.S.
Ambassador to Jamaica Sue
Cobb; Jamaican-born Florida
State Representative Hazelle
Rogers; Jamaica's Consul
General Sandra Grant Griffiths
and representatives of the
Caribbean Consular Corp sta-
tioned in South Florida.

Georgia, Texas, Alabama,
Louisiana and Tennessee. He
will move to Venezuela with
his wife and son.

The Jamaica Ex-Police
Association of South Florida,
Inc. is accepting applications
for its annual United States
and Jamaican scholarships.
Applications for the U.S.
scholarship should be submit-
ted to the scholarship commit-
tee by Mar. 31. The South
Florida Scholarship will be
awarded at the association's
annual ball on April 17. The
Jamaican scholarship will be
awarded on June 1 in Jamaica.
Both scholarships one-time
cash incentives are awarded
to assist students in South
Florida and Jamaica.
For more information con-
tact Malachi Smith at 305-302-
5365 or

To help senior citizens get
familiar with social network-
ing websites the Miami-Dade
Public Library System's Sunny
Isles Beach Branch, 18070
Collins Ave., in partnership
with WPBT Channel 2, is
offering social networking
For more information,
call 305-682-0726 or visit

J Have you been in an accident?

3 Have you suffered a slip and fall.

JDo you have neck and back pain?

Freddie McGregor did ... and now
he is asking you to do the same!



: 8- :U Ti:Tf11 MElh

Jimmy Cliff to be inducted into R&R Hall of Fame

Reggae music icon Jimmy
Cliff is to be inducted into the
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
this month.
Cliff, born James
Chambers, will join pop
groups ABBA and Genesis
among the 2010 inductees at
the Mar. 15 ceremony at the
famed Waldorf-Astoria in
New York.
The 62-year-old will be
inducted by Haitian hip hop
singer and producer Wyclef
Jean, who rose to prominence
as a member of the Fugees.
Cliff, who starred in the
pioneering Jamaican movie
"The Harder They Come"
and whose most memorable
hits include "Many Rivers to
Cross" and "You Can Get It If
You Really Want", said he will

LONDON, England -
Guyanese actor, singer and
writer Cy Grant, who became
the first black person to regu-
larly have a role on British tel-
evision, has died at the age of
90, the British Broadcasting
Corporation (BBC) reported
last month.
It quoted Grant's daugh-
ter, Diana, saying that he died
in London, but gave no cause
of death.
Grant, who served in the
Royal Air Force during World
War II and qualified as a bar-

Antigua calypso

king's trial Mar. 17
ST. JOHN'S, Antigua, CMC -
The trial of Antigua and
Barbuda's reigning king of calyp-
so Leston "Young DL ,i r< L r
Jacobs, on gun-related charges,
will continue on Mar. 17.
Jacobs, 27, as well as
Ceylon Howe, 20 and
Charlesworth Ambrose, 23,
pleaded not guilty to eight gun-
related charges when the trial
started before Chief Magistrate
Ivan Walters last month.
Jacobs was arrested in
Nov. 2009 after two firearms
and more than 100 rounds of
ammunition were found at his
home in Potters on the out-
skirts of the capital. Conrad
Jacobs, 72, the owner of one
of the guns reportedly stolen
by the three accused, took the
witness stand last month and
will continue giving evidence
when the matter resumes on
Mar. 17.
Jacobs, who was remand-
ed into custody, is a former
Caribbean Festival of Arts
(CARIFESTA) calypso
monarch and was the recipi-
ent of a national award the
Order of Princely Heritage -
three years ago.

accept the honor on behalf of
his "wonderful fans."

The veteran performer
has more than 25 albums
under his belt and is preparing
to release a new album,

I \Mlilk ilt ', which he said will
have songs to deal with today's
realities of conflict among
nations, global warming and
the environment, the good and
bad in human relationships,
greed, poverty and love.
"The CD is almost finished
except for some final produc-
tion touches and I am the sole
'iiig. r Cliff explained.
"There is one song that I
co-wrote with Joe Higgs, one
of the unsung heroes of our
music industry, who taught
Bob Marley to harmonize on
He has also announced
plans to start shooting a movie
for which he wrote the screen-

ROSEAU, Dominica, CMC -
A contestant who said she
kept her bible close by during
the competition was crowned
Dominica's Carnival Queen
last month.
"Thanks to God for
everything. I've worked hard
and I've kept true with God
and I would like everyone to
do the same and have a
blessed 2010," said Marcia
Baptiste from the second town
of Portsmouth, north of here.
Baptiste, who said
lxI 1r every round I prayed
and key my bible close by,"

said she plans to join the local
diabetic association after mak-
ing diabetes the theme of her
talent performance.
The 20-year-old also
won Miss Photogenic, Best
Performing Talent and Best
Evening Wear at the show
held at the Pottersville
Savannah on the outskirts
of the capital.
Placing second was Sana
Augustine, while third place
went to Kristelle Fagan.

Guyanese entertainer Cy Grant dies in London at age 90

rister before turning to acting,
became best known for his
role on the BBC's daily topi-
cal program "The Tonight
"It made him a household
name but he left after two
and a half years to avoid
being typecast," the BBC
noted, adding that he went on
to star in the award-winning
television drama Home of the
Brave in 1957 and played the
lead in Othello at the Phoenix
Theatre in Leicester in 1965 at
a time when white actors were

routinely ,la, kLd up" for the

Grant returned to the Bar
briefly in 1972, but left after
six months, and two years
later helped create the Drum
Arts Centre in London -
which was considered to be
hugely important in the devel-
opment of black theater. He
went on to set up multi-cultur-
al festivals across England in
the 1980s.
Alongside his acting and

activism work, he recorded

five albums, having performed
Caribbean folk songs and
calypso across the world. Two
of his best known singles are
"King Cricket" and "The
Constantine C., I p,>, in cele-
bration of Garfield Sobers
and Learie Constantine, two
of the West Indies' most
famous cricketers.
He also recorded many
shows for radio and wrote
several books including a col-
lection of poems.

Community Forum
S8& Cocktail Reception

S'Your Jamaica...Overcoming

the Challenges in 2010 and Beyond!"

hr Tuesday, March 30, 2010 / 6:00 p.m. 9:30 p.m.

at the Signature Grand Hotel
6900 State Road 84, Davie, Florida 33317

Keynote Speaker: Mr. Joseph M. Matalon
President, Private Sector Organization of Jamaica (PSOJ)

RSVP VMBS Florida Representative Office Tel: 305-770-2622/ 2643 TeleCar: 1-66-967-8627 option 4
or Email: ...

S III. II I :m n' I

Bible toting contestant is

Dominica's carnival queen

I-'..rbl ptw crn : .A

N"" HOX"""' 5W iiuiLiYj


Barbadian artist to lead exhibit at academic conference in May

Barbadian artist Annalee
Davis, who has exhibited
work throughout the

Davis, who holds bachelor
and master of fine arts degrees
from schools in the United

States, will have a stewardship
role over the exhibition and
also participate in panel dis-

wwwcarl bbeanto

JW and Blaze take

T&T's 'Road March'

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,
CMC Radio personalities
Jason Williams and Ancil
Isaac created history when
they overwhelmingly won the
"Road March" crown with
their runaway hit "Palance"
during the carnival activities
that ended here last month.
President of the Trinidad
and Tobago Unified Calypso
Organisation (TUCO) Eric
Taylor said Williams and
Isaac, who used the stage
name "JW and Blaze", had
created history after their tune
played a record 417 times, the
first time that any song had
broken the 400 barrier.

In second place was Faye
Ann Lyons, whose "True
Lies" was played 40 times.
Machel Montano's tune "No
Behaviour" came a distant
third, playing 11 times.
JW and Blaze also won
the "International Soca
Monarch" competition.
The National Carnival
Commission (NCC) also
announced that Brian
McFarlane had completed a
beaver-trick when his band
Resurrection-The Mass was
adjudged "Band of the Year"
for the fourth year in a row.

Davis's "Hatchlings -A Requiem" displays the 15-member CARICOM countries as insular national states, lying on a bed of the shred-
ded Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas.

Caribbean and elsewhere for
more than 20 years, will curate
the first ever art exhibition for the
Caribbean Studies Association
Annual Conference, which takes
place in her home country May
The theme for the confer-
ence, which is expected to fea-
ture up to 600 scholars, activists,
artists and writers from the
diaspora, is "Understanding
the Everyday Occurrence of
Violence in the Cultural Life of
the Caribbean: Where Do We
Go from Here?"

cussions. Her presentation
"Project 45 and Maps: of
People and Lands" will exam-
ine anxieties surrounding
intra-Caribbean migration as
well as how overdevelopment
has lessened the quality of life
for local Barbadians.
Davis believes in using
her work to contribute to "an
understanding of the shifting
terrain in our minds and on
our lands, through video, wall-
based work, and installations."


Ho I I o4yu o aeb v hr ic, it o e iryu utrtq
loio Ia~m 4 if Yo *emllem i h I am toa, I 4 *t

Caribtean Today invites you, the reading public, to participate in our
"DearMumma"contest. Write and tell us why you think that you
mother is the best in the world and you
could find your mother and yourself
jetting away to any Caribbean Island
that Air Jamaica flies to for free. .
This is a great chance for you to
show the world how much yorur
mother means to yo01, and what's
even better you could
Moi your trends t0
Caribbean Today
9020 SW 152nd. Street~
Miami, Fl. 33157
or e-mod your #fmtes to
caribtoday@ et
or fx to 305-252-7843.-.


* South Florida dancehall awards
Mar. 14
The Second Annual South Florida
Caribbean Dancehall Awards, which
was established to acknowledge and
honor the accomplishments and contri-
butions of artistes and supporters of
reggae and dancehall, will be staged on
Mar. 14 at the South Florida
Conference/Convention, 6101 N.W. 31
St. in Margate.
Scheduled performers include
Macka Diamond, Mr. Peppa, Gramps
from Morgan Heritage, Stacious, Bruck
Up, Red Rat, Timberlee, Mr.Lexx, Ms.
Thing, Powerman, Jigsy King, Rising
Stars, Wayne Anthony, Zeke Don, T-
Swagg, Honorable, Sotto Bless, Kemar,
Sizwe"C, and Baby Vinegar.
For more information, visit

* 'Jamaica Farewell' returns to
Writer/actress Debra Ehrhardt's
one-woman show "Jamaica, Farewell"
returns to Florida stages this month
with two scheduled performances.
The play will make a stop at the
Miramar Cultural Center in Miramar
on Mar. 27 and on Mar. 28 at the
University Area Community
Development Center in Tampa.
"Jamaica, Farewell", based on
Ehrhardt's story of seeking a better life in
the United States, is set against the polit-
ical upheaval in Jamaica in the 1970s.
For more information, call 754-

* Miami's 'Jazz in the Gardens'
set for Mar. 20 & 21
Some of North America's biggest
names in music are scheduled to per-
form at this year's "Jazz in the
The event two-day event will be
held on Mar. 20 and 21 at Dolphin
Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida.
Among the scheduled performers at the
festival are Mary J. Blige, Boyz II Men,
Melanie Fiona, Bryan-Michael Fox.
For more information, visit

* Jailed Buju Banton nominated
for music awards
Reggae singer Buju Banton may be

jailed, but he has been nominated for
several music awards.
The singer has been nominated for
three 2010 International Reggae &
World Music Awards, including
"Recording Artist Of The Year", "Best
Album" for Rasta Got Soul and "Best
Crossover Song" for Can't Be My Lover,
his recent hit collaboration with R&B
star John Legend.
Banton's one-off single Time And A
Place (John John) last month rose to
number one on both the New York Top
30 Reggae Chart and South Florida Top
25 Reggae Chart. Rasta Got Soul was
number two on both the New York Top
20 Albums Chart and the South Florida
Top 15 Albums Chart.

* Honors pour in for Wyclef Jean
Former Fugees star and philan-
thropist Wyclef Jean is raking in the
Late last month the NAACP hon-
ored him with its Vanguard Award at
the Image Awards, while Harvard
University honored him for his contribu-
tion to music and his philanthropic
efforts. Jean was also honored at the
Massachusetts institution's Cultural
Jean has been helping to raise
funds for aid to his homeland Haiti after
the devastating earthquake there in

* Bahamian filmmaker for Miami
film fest
Bahamian filmmaker Kareem
Mortimer will present his narrative fea-
ture "Children of God" at the 27th
Annual Miami International Film Festival
Mar. 13-14 at Regal South Beach
Cinemas and the Tower Theatre in Little
Havana, Florida.
"Children of God" was shot last
summer in The Bahamas. Mortimer,
who wrote, directed and produced the
film, said "it is a subtle and haunting
look at race, sexuality and religion in
The Bahamas, which makes it a very
timely and important film."

Compiled from various sources,
including CMC and CaribWorldNews.


wwwcari bbeantoday~com

Panel discussion on breast cancer set for Mar. 20

Florida Breast cancer pro-
grams of interest to both men
and women will be the focus
of a meeting on Mar. 20 at
The African American
Research Library and
Cultural Center here.
A Susan G. Komen for
the Cure Breast Cancer Panel
Discussion will be held from 2
to 5 p.m.
Among the speakers will
be Pia Delvaille, who will
focus on the Breast Cancer
Navigation Program at
Broward Health.
South Florida photogra-
pher Susan Buzzi will present
her personal journey of how
she was able to include more

than 100 women and men,
plus health professionals, in
the "Stories to hiurL photo
exhibit at Broward's main

Trivel C. McKire, pro-
gram manager for the Breast
& Cervical Cancer Initiative
for the Broward County
Health Department, will dis-
cuss breast cancer screenings.
The audience will be able to
touch breast lumps that are
designed to feel "normal" and
"abnormal". The presenta-
tion will include resources for
treatment programs.
Kevin Gray, executive
director, Woman2Woman

Breast Cancer Foundation,
will speak about "The Big BC
and Me", focusing on the
effects of breast cancer in the
community and family from a
male's perspective.
Doreen Mwenya-Grant,
founder of the Zambian Breast
Cancer Foundation is a four-
year breast cancer survivor.
She hopes to inspire, educate
and help others to thrive
through their cancer journeys.
Sonia Franklin, of Sisters
Network Tampa Bay, Inc.
Sisters Network@ Inc, (SNI),
will discuss the only national
African American breast can-
cer survivorship organization
in the United States. Sisters
Network has 43 affiliate chap-

Self treating blood clots in surface veins

year-old daughter developed
superficial blood clots in her
lower legs. What should we
watch for? Are there ways to
treat this condition permanently?

ANSWER: Blood clots in sur-
face veins are relatively com-
mon. This condition is known
as superficial thrombophlebitis.
Clots in surface veins are more
of a nuisance, whereas clots in
deep veins can be serious and
even life-threatening.

several weeks. Elevating the
affected limb, using a warm
washcloth to apply heat to the
area several times a day, and
taking a non-steroidal anti-
inflammatory drug such as
ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or
naproxen (Aleve) can help
reduce the discomfort.
Compression stockings may
also be helpful.

Although structural abnor-
malities of the veins, such as

ple to clotting. Trauma to the
veins is another frequent cause
of superficial thrombophlebitis.
Superficial thrombophlebitis
also can be caused by an inherited
blood-clotting disorder or, rarely,
by a form of cancer, such as pan-
creatic cancer.
Recurrent episodes of super-
ficial thrombophlebitis in a vein
that is structurally abnormal can
be treated with minor surgery to
remove the abnormal segment of
the vein. Removing the vein
won't affect circulation in the leg
because deeper veins can handle
the increased blood volume.
Another treatment option
is injecting the vein with a med-
ication that causes the inside of
the vein to become irritated
and then scar shut, preventing
formation of more clots.

Edited from an article by Dr.
Ian McPhail, Cardiovascular
Diseases, Mayo Clinic,
Rochester, Minnesota. Tribune
Media Services Inc

ters in 22 cities.
For more information,

call 954-357-7443.

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A person who has had
superficial thrombophlebitis is
at increased risk of developing
it again. Superficial throm-
bophlebitis frequently occurs in
leg veins that are dilated or
leaky (varicose veins). Blood
may pool and clot in these
abnormal veins, leading to pain,
redness, swelling and tender-
ness in the affected area.
The clots usually resolve
on their own, typically within

varicose veins, are a common
cause of superficial throm-
bophlebitis, other factors can
predispose a person to blood
clotting in surface veins.
Pregnant women and those
who have just given birth are at
higher risk of clotting.
In a young woman, the
first possibility that comes to
mind, apart from pregnancy, is
oral contraceptive use because
hormones can predispose peo-

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* Bleaching of Teeth

Superficial Deep Vein
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Superlici I lQ
Ve i




A Caribbean Today special feature

wwwcari bbeanto

Investigation begins as Miami cargo ship sinks

off St. Lucia's coast with over 100 containers

CASTRIES, St. Lucia,
CMC The St. Lucia Air and
Seaports Authority (SLAS-

PA) confirmed it has started
an investigation to determine
how the cargo ship, the MV

Angeline of the Miami-based
Bernuth Line, sank in waters
on the west coast of the island

last month.
SLASPA said that the ves-
sel, which was bound for
Barbados, was carrying over
100 containers of general cargo
when it got into difficulty.
"The ship listed to the
starboard side, capsized and
then sank," said Shone Gibbs,
sales and marketing manager
for DaCosta Mannings
"Unfortunately, all cargo
was lost, and remains irre-
trievable. Insurance is in place

for something like this."
SLASPA said the vessel
remains partially sub-merged
two nautical miles from Vieux
Fort, south of here, and there
were no injuries to the captain
and crew. But SLASPA
warned members of the public
against interfering with the
ship's cargo, adding that it was
also concerned for the safety
of ocean going vessels since it
is difficult to spot the floating
objects especially at night.

New joint ship

management venture

ATHENS, Greece Tsakos
Shipping & Trading SA (TST)
and Schoeller Holdings Ltd.
(SHL) the owner of Columbia
Shipmanagement Ltd. have
formed a new joint venture
ship management company.
The entity, to be
named Tsakos Columbia
Shipmanagement SA (TCM),
is scheduled to begin opera-
tions during the second quarter
of 2010.
The purpose of the new
company is to expand its serv-
ices to third party owners and
continue the technical man-
agement of the existing TST
managed fleet. TCM will

operate independently under
its own document of compli-
ance. There will be no changes
to the existing quality, safety
and environmental manage-
ment systems applied by TST
or to the pool of shore and
seagoing personnel employed
by TST.
TCM will be based in
Athens in new office space with-
in the Tsakos Group premises.
The new joint venture is
the result of the working rela-
tionship between the two com-
panies that started more than
10 years ago and has devel-
oped in recent years.

NCL's largest freestyle cruise

comes to Port of Miami

MIAMI, Florida This sum-
mer, Norwegian Cruise Line's
(NCL) new F3 ship the
Norwegian Epic, NCL's
largest and most innovative
freestyle cruise ship, will begin
service at the Port of Miami.
Following a series of inau-
gural events in Europe and
the United States, the 4,200
passenger Norwegian Epic
will homeport in Miami and
offer alternating seven-day
western and eastern
Caribbean voyages through
April 2011.
Epic represents the next
generation of NCL's freestyle
cruising a ship that incorpo-
rates a range of new features
and amenities. To date, the
company has revealed four
nightlife venues. NCL plans
to unveil additional details
about the ship soon.
"We are proud of the
commitment NCL has made
to the Port of Miami," Port
Director Bill Johnson said in a

recent press release. "This new
addition to our 2010 cruise
line-up will be one of the
largest and most well appoint-
ed cruise ships in the world.
It's a fantastic addition to our
already impressive line-up."


Photograph courtesy of USTRANSCOM

A TITAN Salvage team from Pompano Beach, Florida is working in Haiti to remove navigational hazards, including the collapsed
Washington gantry crane in Port-au-Prince, for the United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM) in an effort to increase
the cargo throughput in the heavily damaged port. TITAN's team is using Resolve Marine Services' 142-foot crane barge RMG300
to help clear debris and other navigational hazards. TITAN has also hired Associated Marine Salvage's 150-foot crane barge
MB1215 to support the marine construction needed to position two, 400-foot by 100-foot Crowley deck barges in the port. The
barges will be used as floating piers for discharging cargo.




A Caribbean Today special feature

Cruise ship business keeps Bermuda's tourism industry afloat ~


- A slump in air arrivals was
offset by buoyant cruise ship
business as Bermuda's overall
visitor figures rose by 4,000
last year, Premier Dr. Ewart
Brown has said.
Air arrivals were down by
nearly 11 percent from 2008 to
235,860, while cruise passen-
gers, who spend far less while
ashore, totaled more than
The total number of
tourists who came to Bermuda
in 2009 was 559,042, up from
555,162 in 2008.
Business travelers repre-

sented 18 percent of tourists
last year while 16 percent of
visitors came to see family and
friends. Four percent came for
a convention, down 24 percent
compared to 2008.
The 235,860 air arrivals
represented the lowest num-
ber since 1998, when the total
was around 400,000.

The days of air visitors
outstripping cruise passengers
have long gone. International
business has put tourism in
the shade and is now the main
plank of the island's economy.

Brown, who is
also tourism
and transport
minister, said
of the 2009 air
figures: "This
is clearly dis-
appointing. It
is the lowest Brown
number of vis-
itors to
Bermuda in a very long time.
"It does, however, reflect
a recovery from the depths of
the first half of the year and
showed a respectable recovery
by year end."
Visitor spending was also

down for the year. Total fig-
ures were not available, but in
2009 the range per tourist was
from $979 to $1,175 compared
to $1,053 to $1,224 for 2008.
"The global economy is
still a real concern.
Notwithstanding some signs of
recovery, it has not turned
around yet. This is by far the
most serious recession since
1929. We all have been
touched by it in one way or
another," Brown said.
"We all know that tourism
in Bermuda continues to face
challenges to maintain its fair
share of an increasingly com-

Port of Miami welcomes Costa Cruises in Jan. 2011

world's most distinguished
cruise lines, handling more
than 4.1 million cruise passen-
gers annually. Ports of call
easily reached from Miami
extend from The Bahamas to
the eastern and western
Caribbean, Mexico, Key West
and South America.
More information can be
obtained at the Port of
Miami's website:

Cruise Ship Specs:
Passenger capacity:
Number of Crew:
Total cabins:

MIAMI, Florida The Port of
Miami has announced the
return of Costa Cruises to the
city, beginning early next year.
The 2,114-passenger
Costa Atlantica will sail seven
nights, alternating eastern and
western Caribbean cruises
from Miami starting Jan. 2011
through Mar. 2011. It has
1,057 cabins and carries 895

Barbados aims to
CMC The Barbados govern-
ment says it is aiming to begin
negotiations by the end of this
month to import natural gas
via pipeline from Trinidad and
Tobago in an effort to reduce
the country's fuel import bill.
It said the decision is in
keeping with the government's
efforts to transform the econ-
omy from fossil fuels to one
driven by natural gas.
"The importation of natu-
ral gas by pipeline is expected
to significantly reduce
Barbados's annual fuel import
bill and generate substantial
savings throughout the econo-

Accommodations include
12 passenger decks named
after movies directed by the
famous Italian director
Federico Fellini. Carrara mar-
ble, Murano glass accents, in-
laid mosaic tile and a Venetian
atmosphere are among the
elements of the Atlantica
cruise ship.
"We are happy to wel-
come Costa Cruises to the

import natural gas
my," said Minister of Economic
Affairs, Trade, Industry and
Commerce Dr. David Estwick.
"It will provide significant
economic and social bene-
fits.. .while impacting positive-
ly on the island's balance of
Dr. Estwick will lead the
negotiation team's effort to
hammer-out a number of
accords and a clearly defined
formula for a tariff reduction
to Barbados, when countries
such as Guadeloupe, St. Lucia
and Dominica utilize the

Port of Miami," Bill Johnson,
port director, said in a recent
press release. "The Port of
Miami is home to the world's
most distinguished cruise
lines. Costa represents our
eighth homeport brand."
The Port of Miami is the sec-
ond largest economic engine
in the South Florida commu-
nity, generating an estimated
176,000 jobs and a total eco-
nomic impact of $17 billion in
The port is home to the

petitive market."
The premier said the
cruise ship industry was
expected to generate $70 mil-
lion for the economy this year.

Packing tips

Choose the right box
Use a box that is strong
enough to protect the con-
tents and large enough to
leave space for adequate

Protect and pack
Don't skimp on cushioning
material. Use shredded or
crumpled newspaper, bubble
wrap, or StyrofoamTM
peanuts, or even plain air-
popped popcorn. Pack items
tightly to avoid shifting, and
make sure the cushioning
material covers all sides of
the object. If you're shipping
several items t< gL iIL r wrap
each one separately.

Seal carefully
Always use tape that is
designed for shipping, such as
pressure-sensitive tape,
nylon-reinforced kraft paper
tape, or glass-reinforced pres-
sure-sensitive tape.



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A Caribbean Today special feature

U.S. re-affirms commitment

United States has renewed its
commitment to Haiti in the
aftermath of the earthquake
which demolished the Caribbean
nation's capital in January.
White House Press
Secretary Robert Gibbs said
that Washington continues to
"stand with our Haitian friends
as they recover and rebuild.
"Our thoughts and prayers
also remain with Haitian-
Americans around our country
who have lost so many family
and friends," he added last
The Jan. 12 earthquake
killed more than 230,000 peo-
ple and left another million to
live on the streets amidst the
rumble of buildings that crum-
bled during the tremor.

But Gibbs added that the

situation remains "dire," not-
ing that, even before the earth-
quake, Haiti was the poorest
country in the Western
"Today, the need for food,
shelter, medical supplies and
basic security is enormous, and
the coming rainy season will
pose new challenges," Gibbs
He said the infrastructure
that was destroyed in minutes
will take years to rebuild.
"Guided by the roadmap
for cooperation and coordina-
tion developed by the govern-
ment of Haiti, the United
States will support our Haitian
partners as they transition
from emergency assistance to
recovery and long-term recon-
struction," Gibbs assured.

France offers $235M

assistance package
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, that includes a helicopter tour
CMC French President of the devastated areas.
Nicholas Sarkozy has France's head of state said his
announced a $235 million country already agreed to can-
assistance package to help this cel $40.9 million of debt owed
Caribbean community (CARI- by Haiti.
COM) country rebuild in the Additionally, Paris will
aftermath of a catastrophic provide 1,000 tents and 16,000
earthquake in January. tarpaulins to help shelter those
Sarkozy, the first French displaced by the devastating
president to visit Haiti in earthquake that killed more
more than a century, made the than 230,000 people and left
disclosure at a press confer- more than one million home-
ence with his Haitian counter- less. The aid package will also
part Rend Preval last month. include preparing a study to
"I have come to tell the construct the Presidential
Haitian people and their lead- Palace, sections of which were
ers that France, which was the reduced to rubble as a result
first on the ground after the of the Jan. 12 quake.
catastrophe, will remain firmly Some people handed out
at their side to help them pick fliers in the streets protesting
themselves up again and open Sarkozy's visit and blaming
a new happy page in their his- France for enslaving Haiti.
tory," he told reporters shortly *
after his arrival for a brief visit

largest-ever humanitarian
appeal launched in the wake
of a natural disaster, the
United Nations and its aid
partners have called for nearly
$1.5 billion to assist three mil-
lion Haitians.
The U.N. said last month
that about 1.2 million people
in the Caribbean community
(CARICOM) country need
emergency shelter and urgent
sanitation and hygiene help in
the wake of last month's mas-
sive earthquake. It also said at
least two million people need
food aid in the aftermath of
the 7.0 magnitude earthquake,
which struck Haiti on Jan. 12
claiming 230,000 lives.
The $1.44 billion appeal
was launched by U.N.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-
moon, who was joined by
John Holmes, under-secretary
general for humanitarian

affairs and emergency relief
coordinator; Bill Clinton, for-
mer United States president
and U.N. Envoy for Haiti; and
Ambassador Leo Mdrores of
The amount being sought
for Haiti surpasses the $1.41
billion sought by the U.N. and
its partners in 2005 following
the Indian Ocean tsunami.
The revised appeal will fold in
the $577 million flash appeal
issued just days after the
earthquake, which was origi-
nally intended to cover a six-
month period, the U.N. said.

It is being expanded to
meet needs for one year as the
hurricane and rainy seasons
approach, and its size reflects
the scale of the catastrophe,
taking into consideration the
need for stepped-up early
recovery efforts. The original

wwwcari bbeanto

appeal is more than 100 per-
cent funded, leaving unmet
requirements for the revised
appeal at $768 million.
The U.N. said it aims to
support, among other sectors,
agriculture, education, emer-
gency shelter, telecommunica-
tions, health and nutrition.
One third of the funds are
earmarked for food aid.
The funds will also be
used for the cash-for-work ini-
tiative, a U.N. scheme for
Haitians to rebuild their coun-
try, which currently employs
75,000 people daily and hopes
to bring many more on board.
"By paying Haitians to
work, we are putting money in
the people's hands" to feed
families, jump-start the econo-
my and help create a security
and social safety net, the U.N.
secretary-general said.


U.N. photograph/Marco Dormino
Many of Port-au-Prince's homeless have set up tent communities in the aftermath of the earthquake.

Haitian migrants repatriated

to homeland by U.S.

MIAMI, Florida The United
States Coast Guard said it had
repatriated a boatload of
Haitian migrants after they
were rescued from a sinking
50-foot freighter about 45
miles north of the French-
speaking Caribbean country's
Isle de Tortue last month.
The Coast Guard said 88
Haitians were returned to Cap
Haitien, Haiti on Feb. 16,
three days after the "grossly-
over-\uighIcd" freighter was
spotted. They said those
aboard were mostly men, but
included 21 women, three
boys and one girl. The chil-
dren's ages were not disclosed.
The Coast Guard said the

migrants were taken aboard a
cutter and given food, water
and medical attention.
Earlier last month, the
Coast Guard said it had repa-
triated 78 Haitians after
Bahamian authorities found
the group in an overloaded
30-foot freighter 13 miles west
of Great Exuma Island in The
Bahamas island chain.
U.S. Coast Guard officials
said they have seen no imme-
diate signs that Haitians are
attempting to illegally leave
the country in the aftermath
of the devastating earthquake
that left millions homeless.

U.N. seeks largest humanitarian aid

for earthquake damaged Haiti



Jamaican skier earns creditable top 10 finish at Winter Olympics

Jamaican skier Errol Kerr
earned a creditable top 10
finish in the ski-cross
nation event at last month's
Winter Olympic Games in
Vancouver, Canada.
The 23-year-old Kerr, the
youngest competitor in the
event, managed to advance to
the second round and ended
up in ninth place with a time
of 1:13.71. The winner was
Michael Schmid of
Switzerland in 1:12.53. Second
went Christopher Del Bosco
of Canada (1:12.89) and third
to France's Xavier Kuhn

"It was a great feeling to
represent Jamaica," Kerr told
Jamaica's Gleaner newspaper.
"To wake up... and go into the
competition, that's something
that I have been dreaming of
since I was a little boy.
"However, I am absolute-
ly disappointed. I went into
this with my sights set on the
podium. I was never interest-
ed in just coming here to com-
pete. The only thing I wanted
to do was win."
Kerr, who was born in
New York to an American

mother and Jamaican
father, and currently
lives in the U.S., fin-
ished ahead of com-
petitors from estab-
lished skiing countries
such as the United
States and the Czech
"So to come away
with ninth place there
is still a lot for us to be
happy about," he told
the newspaper.

ABU DHABI, United Arab
Emirates, CMC Usain Bolt
and compatriot Shelly-Ann
Fraser have made the shortlist
of nominees for the prestigious
World Sportsman and World
awards, respectively.
The two Jamaican track
stars are among a glittering
collection of the world's top
sports personalities to have
been nominated for the 2010
World Sports Awards, follow-
ing a ballot by the world's
sports media.
Bolt won the coveted
World Sportsman-of-the-Year
award last year, while Fraser is
being nominated for the World
Sportswoman-of-the-Year title
for the second straight year.
Bolt followed his wonder-
ful Olympic year with an equal-
ly spectacular 2009. At the
IAAF World Championships in
Athletics in Germany, Bolt won
the 100 meters, 200 meters, and
4x100 meters relay gold medals.
His challengers this time
around are four-time winner
and men's tennis world number

West Indies star to coach cricket in the U.S.

West Indies batsman
Shivnarine Chanderpaul has
been appointed head coach of
American College Cricket.
Lloyd Jodah, president of
the ACC, announced last month
that Chanderpaul has agreed to

allow his name to be associated
with the championship trophy
for the winning team in the
American College Cricket Spring
Break Championship here.
Organizers said
Chanderpaul has endorsed
the championship and said he
looks forward to giving techni-
cal assistance when his playing
schedule permits.
"Right now, I'm happily
playing cricket all over the
world, but when my schedule
permits, I'd like to do some
coaching of college cricketers
in the United States,"
Chanderpaul was quoted as
saying last month.
Chanderpaul has become
the first active Test cricket star
to become so involved in the
game in the U.S. Officials are
also hoping to have the star

batsman present the
Chanderpaul Trophy to the
national champions on Mar. 21.
The American College
Cricket Spring Break
Championship is aimed to
help college cricketers get
more support from their
schools and assist in getting

official recognition in more
universities. The five-day
championship will feature
more than 300 cricket student
athletes representing some 20
universities. The U.S. Under
19 World Cup team and the
University of the West Indies
are scheduled to compete as

special guests.
Matches will be played at
the Central Broward Regional
Park (CBRP) and Brian
Piccolo Park.
The semi finals and final
will be played at the CBRP

march of dimes

march for babies

one Roger Federer of
Switzerland, top Barcelona and
Argentina soccer player Lionel
Messi, the current World
Footballer-of-the-Year, long dis-
tance runner Kenenisa Bekele
of Ethiopia, Tour de France
winner Alberto Contador of
Spain, and Italy's seven-time
senior MotoGP champion
Valentino Rossi of Italy.
Fraser added the World
Championship 100 meters gold
medal to the Olympic gold
medal she won in Beijing the
previous year. She faces a diffi-
cult challenge to topple two-
time World Sportswoman-of-
the-Year winner and women's
tennis world number one
Serena Williams of the United
States; swimmers Federica
Pellegrini of Italy and Britta
Steffen of Germany; Jamaica-
born World 400 meters cham-
pion Sanya Richards of the
United States, and American
ski racer Lindsey Vonn.
The winners will be
announced on Mar. 10.

Bolt, Fraser nominated

for world sports awards


A Caribbean Today special feature

wvwwji MI -- p.-

Japan: Where ancient charm meets modern marvels an
PETER A. WEBLEY residents. to extend the museum. We scenery.

When most people in
the West think about
Japan, images of
large industry, manufacturing
and shipping come to mind -
Sony, Sanyo, Mitsubishi,
Toyota, Honda and other
well-known names that have
created "Brand Japan".
Japan is the world's second
largest economy, and the third
largest in spending power. It

boasts many
modern met-
ropolitan ares
with vast
technical mar-
Japan wants
the world to
know the
other side of
its culture and
Embarking on
an ambitious
project to
promote the
country as a
tourist desti-
nation, the
Japan Tourist
Board (JTB),
along with
the country's
Ministry of
journalists to
explore the
cuisine, histo-
ry, culture
and industry
that is Japan.
Today was
part of the
journey to get
a close look
at what is
new in this
grand coun-

I was the first to arrive at
the 490-room hotel Radisson
Narita, a 25-minute drive from
the airport. It is a magnet for
both leisure and business trav-
An early morning depar-
ture took us to Ishi Bashi
strawberry farm in the Chiba
Prefecture area, which ranks
second in Japan for its agricul-
tural production. Producing
between 15,000 and 16,000

were then shown an authentic
Japanese rock garden, which
takes years to perfect. It is a
true wonder.
Next it was lunch at "The
Fish", a restaurant built with
glass walls all around to allow
a view of the sea below. The
meal was absolutely sumptu-
The group then headed
along the coast through sever-
al small villages. Approaching
the Kisarazu area,
we were treated to
a rare and dying
part of the
Japanese culture,

the geisha.
have plans
S. to encour- Sensoji orAssakura Kan
Pr age the
younger generation to take
part in geisha training, which
"we witnessed, and were treat-
.', ed to tea and desert, a Geisha
Dance Show, and participated
EL a game of "rock, paper,
scissors" geisha-style.
Later we visited a tradi-
"" tional Ryokan and experi-
n o

Carvings of two ferocious lions, protectors of the temple path..

Japan is a archipelago of
6,852 islands. The four largest
are Honsh Hokkaid Ky sh
and Shikoku, accounting for
97 percent of Japan's land
area. Most of the islands are
made up of volcanic moun-
tainous terrain. Japan's Mount
Fuji, which is 3,776 meters
high, is not only the country's
best-known symbol and
tallest mountain but it is
actually a volcano.
The land area of Japan is
roughly the size of California,
but only 20 percent of the land
usable for a population of
about 128 million people. The
de facto capital city of Tokyo,
and the greater Tokyo area,
which includes several sur-
rounding prefectures, is the
largest metropolitan area in
the world, with over 30 million

strawberries plants with the
berries sold locally, this hydro-
ponics farm is a wonder. The
fruits are the sweetest.
Our next stop was
Nokogiriyama Mountain. A
trolley took us up, about 680
meters. At the top, there is a
view of the spectacular coast-
line and the adjacent moun-
tain ridges. On the opposite
side mountain, there's a
Japanese temple called Nihon
Dera. In the gathering area,
between two hills, there's a
massive stone carving of
Buddha in the side of the
mountain. Our guide said it's
the greatest image of Buddha
made of stone.
Then it was on to the
Kanaya Museum, which hous-
es rare paintings, some over
200 years old. Owner and
Administrative Director
Hiroshi Suziki explained plans

The group then headed
towards the Kanagawa
Prefecture via the Tokyo Bay
Aqua Line. The Wan Aqua-
Line is a toll road crossing the
middle of Tokyo Bay along
the coast of large cities,
including Tokyo, Yokohama,
Kawasaki, Chiba, Kisarazu.
The project is regarded as a
phenomenal feat of engineer-
ing. It was built in Dec. 1997.
The main structure in the mid-
dle of the harbor is a favorite
spot for young lovers.
Yokohama, which was

devastated by the Great
Kanto Earthquake of 1923,
rises out of the landscape.
Sitting along the coastline in
the center of Japan,
Yokohama is one of the 15
Japanese government desig-
nated cities. We settled in at
the historic Hotel New Grand

R\OIOKUln lempie, ureat buaana) a symool OT ramaKura ana ne second largest in Japan.

enced the spa facilities at
Ryugujyo Spa Hotel
Mikaduki, where guests can
have massages plus private or
group baths while overlooking
the ocean, or in the privacy of
their own area. The hotel has
guest rooms designed in
Japanese-style and guests can
have a traditional Japanese
bath overlooking gorgeous

(Yokohama), whose most
famous guest was American
General Douglas McArthur.
The hotel has preserved the
room where he stayed, with
his desk and chair as they
were after World War II.
Yokohama is also home to a
large Chinatown.
The next day the group
headed inland to Kamakura, a

id excitement
lovely little town in the
Kanagawa Prefecture. On the
way Mount Fuji finally came
into view, but because of
weather conditions we were
only able to see it briefly. At
Kamakura we visited a tradi-
tional kimono shop, where
wonderful designs on pure silk
are custom-made for wedding
parties and people with dis-
criminating tastes. While
there, we were introduced to
our first real Japanese tea cer-
emony, which was both educa-
tional and fascinating.
Lunch was at the Komyo-
ji temple (Shojin-Ryori). It
was a full vegetarian meal.
The Gate to
-. Tsurugaoka
Shrine is awe
inspiring, with
cherry blossom
trees on both
sides of the path
leading towards
the temple. Just
before entering,
each journalist
was paired with a
guide who would
later escort us
through the town,
helping us to pur-
chase whatever
we wanted. This is
something new
that the Japanese
are experimenting
with, but similar to
what is done in many
Caribbean countries. It's a great
way to see the area with an inti-
mate, authentic touch.
We headed to Kotokuin
Temple, home of the Great
Buddha in Kamakura.
Standing 13.35 meters high
and weighing approximately
93 tons, the statue is awesome.
It was the first large Buddha
made entirely with the bronze
contributions of ordinary peo-
ple and is the symbol of
Kamakura. It is also the sec-
ond largest in Japan. You can
enter the statue walk around
the inside.
A bus took us further
inland to the town of
Nagatoro, located in the
Chichibu District of Saitama
Prefecture. We arrived at a
traditional Ryokan (Chosei-
kan), where visitors must
remove their shoes before
entering the sleeping quarters,
and move around thereafter
with slippers. The hotel has 22
rooms and guests sleep on the
ground on futon beds. It has
wonderful spa facilities.
We experienced the
Arakawa River Boat trip with
ice still on the water. The
boats, which were propelled
by a bamboo pole, reminded
me of rafting Jamaica's rivers.


wwwcari bbeantoday~com


A Caribbean Today special feature

Air Jamaica makes multiple changes to North American flight schedule
A ir Jamaica last month to meet our financial obliga- on the following routes: New By April 12, Air Jamaica Toronto, three daily flights to
announced a signifi- tions," stated Bruce Nobles, York (JFK) Grenada and will operate 161 weekly flights New York (JFK) and four
cant realignment of its Air Jamaica's president and Jamaica Orlando. between Jamaica and five daily flights to Fort
network, including the suspen- chief executive officer, in a Effective April 12, Air cities, with daily service to Lauderdale.
on of service on several press release last month. Jamaica will suspend service Baltimore, Philadelphia and

routes in the United States.
The airline said the moves
were driven by the departure
of three aircraft from its fleet.

Air Jamaica has realigned several routes.

By April, Air Jamaica will
operate six aircraft, a A319,
four A320s and a A321.
"This fleet reduction has
become necessary as we seek

AirTran Airways last month
launched non-stop flights from
three United States cities to
Montego Bay, Jamaica.
The airline sent inaugural
flights from Orlando, Florida;
Atlanta, Georgia and
Baltimore, Maryland on the
same day, Feb. 11.

Jamaica's Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlet
accepts a model of an AirTran Airways aircraft
by Roger Morenc, director of revenue manage

The official take-off of the
service was marked with a gate-
side Jamaican-style celebration
at Orlando International
Airport (MCO), Hartsfield-
Jackson International Airport
(ATL) and Baltimore's airport
(BWI) prior to the inaugural

Prior to boarding, passen-

"However Air Jamaica
continues to be the best choice
for convenient schedule and
excellent service as we have

ensured that adequate capaci-
ty is provided on our core
Effective Mar. 9, Air
Jamaica will suspend service

gers on the inaugural flights
were treated to the reggae
rhythms at the gate. Upon
arrival in Montego Bay
(MBJ), the flights were wel-
comed with a ceremonial
water arch and, as passengers
entered the terminal, they
were greeted with a mento
band performance,
welcome beads and
a special reception.
up the world-
renowned Jamaican
culture has never
been easier," said
Roger Morenc,
AirTran's director
of revenue manage-
The non-stop
flight from Orlando
is scheduled to
operate four times
per week, depart-
ing MCO at 11:08
a.m. and arriving at
MBJ at 1:07 p.m.
The return flight is
scheduled to depart
tt, right, MBJ at 1:57 p.m.
presented and arrive at MCO
ment for the at 4:01 p.m.
The daily
non-stop flight
departs ATL at 12:25 p.m. and
arrives at MBJ at 3:10 p.m.
The northbound flight departs
MBJ at 1:09 p.m. and arrives
at ATL at 4:06 p.m.
The daily non-stop flight
departs BWI at 8:55 a.m. and
arrives at MBJ at 12:19 p.m.
The return flight departs MBJ
4 p.m. and arrives at BWI at
7:28 p.m.

on the following
routes: Jamaica -
Chicago, Jamaica -
Curacao and Jamaica
- Nassau.

The revised
schedule will take
effect in two stages:
On Mar. 9 and April
12. The new schedule
also changes some fre-
quencies and depar-
ture timings. Key
changes include:
New York will
have three daily
flights effective Mar.
14, including two
early morning depar-
tures, one to Kingston
and one to Montego
Chicago will be
reduced to three
weekly flights
between Mar. 9 and
April 11.
Nassau will be
reduced to two week-
ly flights after Mar. 14.
Baltimore will
operate daily service
effective April 12,
departing Baltimore
in the afternoon and
departing Montego
Bay in the morning.
and Toronto will also
operate daily service
effective April 12.
Fort Lauderdale
will operate four daily
flights effective April
12 three to Kingston
and one to Montego

.. p

" W~eeIy &Twice, W-eeky Fixed Day Sajllin~s
" Fast, Dependable Transit
*,.Accurate D'ocumentation

*Dry and Refrigerated Conti~iners,
*. oats, Machinery & Rodllng Stock

~~7sea! Wrg.,

US GenwaI Agentr SmaFraigilit Ag.mcias UIS& luc
WVb EU u~Skm~~I~a~u








AirTran launches flights to MoBay

from three major cities in the U.S.

Most of us try to attract olher people by the friends
STA we keep and the way we carry ourselves. If you
eare going to a party or a formal function, dontvyou
dress well? We all want to promote a favorable
impression of ourselves to other people we meet
and talk to.
BI II we agree on that, then think of this. Why should it
be any diff a rent for your business? If you want to
project a lavorable image e of your company, in
.. order to win customers, you should keep your cam-
pany with goad friends and... dress your company

A. I CaribbeanWtay
Paler A. Webley,
pu ,sh Coasisteutly cvdible
For ifomatio,n please call
.. 35-Z3-26 or fax 305-252-7843



_wwwcarl bbeanto

A Caribbean Today special feature

Japan: Where ancient charm meets modern marvels and excitement


Rapids mixed in with areas of
slow currents made the ride
exciting. The precipitous cliffs,
called Chichibu-Sekiheki,
make the area remarkable.
The next stop was a sake
factory where the process of
making the drink was
explained and we taste tested
several blends.
Making soba (a form of
noodles) followed at a nearby
factory. We sifted flour, made
dough and cut the dough into
thin strips. We then ate the
soba we produced.
Kawagoe Town in
Saitama Prefecture was next.
About 30 minutes from cen-
tral Tokyo by train, the town
is rich in history and culture.
It dates back to the Edo peri-
od of Japan real and authen-
tic. Most of the buildings are
well over 250 years old. There
are knife shops, featuring
master knife makers with gen-
uine samurai swords, plus
restaurants where they teach
people to make sushi.
In the town center there's
an old bell tower, built in 624.
A 'newer' bell tower was built
in 1893 after a fire destroyed
the original structure.

Then it was on to Tokyo,

the massive city of 12 million.
Night is lit up by the Tokyo
Tower, which is the city's land-
mark and remains one of
Japan's main tourist attrac-
tions. Opened in 1958, the
tower is 333 meters tall and
weighs some 4,000 tons. With
176 floodlights, it is illuminat-
ed with white lights in summer
and orange in winter. From
the special observatory on the

sibly one of Japan's best-kept
secrets. With a mixture of
great food, fine spirits,
karaoke, dancing, and a beau-
tiful host with a glowing
Tokyo skyline in the back-
ground, the night turned out
to be one of the highlights of
our visit.
We checked into Hotel
Nikko, Tokyo, located bayside
on the large man-made dining

An item on the menu at the Fish Restaurant, close to the Kanaya Museum.

top of the tower, Mount
Tsukuba and Mount Fuji can
be seen. Mount Fuji is the
center of a wide-ranging natu-
ral recreation zone.
At the waterfront we
boarded a boat for a dinner
cruise around Tokyo Bay, pos-

Abandoned Half Moon in Antigua

to be transformed into luxury resort

ST. JOHN'S, Antigua, CMC -
The Antigua and Barbuda gov-
ernment has signed a deal to
transform the abandoned Half
Moon Bay property into a five-
star resort with a professional
level golf course.
Under the public-private
partnership with Half Moon
Bay Developers LLC, a joint
venture company, a high-end
luxury hotel and residential
development will be part of the
first phase of development.
Prime Minister Baldwin
Spencer, in announcing the

agreement, said Cabinet con-
ducted an extensive search and
employed a rigorous process to
choose the ideal developer for
the project.
However, it was not clear
how soon the project would
Government compulsorily
acquired the 108-acre property
a few years ago in a protracted
process following the destruc-
tion of the hotel during a hurri-
cane in 1995.

and shopping island of
Odaiba. The hotel's backdrop
includes the Rainbow Bridge,
Tokyo Tower and city skyline.
The next day we set out
to explore Odaiba. It was ini-
tially built to defend Tokyo
and the surrounding areas
from attack. Since the 1990s
the area has evolved as a
major commercial, residential
and leisure area.
The Port of Tokyo, once
known as the Port of Edo,
became a gateway for interna-
tional trade in 1941. Since
then, it has been the vital
waterway facilitating produc-
tion and consumption for 40
million people in the Tokyo
metropolitan area.
We headed for the
Rainbow Bridge, a suspension
bridge that connects Odaiba to
the wharf at Shibaura. It is over
500 meters long and ferries
three lines of public transporta-
tion the Rinkou Douro or
Portside Avenue, Metropolitan
Expressway (on the upper
deck), and the Yurikamome
New Transit (on the lower
We continued to Sensoji or
Assakura Kannon, a Buddhist
temple dedicated to the Buddhist
deity of mercy and compassion.
At a nearby shopping street
named Nakamise, visitors can
purchase food and gifts. This is
one of the most popular sights in
At the Ryogoku area of
Tokyo, we viewed products at a
Paulownia furniture store, fol-
lowed by a visit to Lion Dou, a
clothing shop that caters exclu-
sively to the sumo wrestlers.
Later we lunched at Ryogoku
(sumo wrestler's pot). The serv-
ings were huge, enough to feed

four grown adults.
We then visited a
Japanese lantern-making

Walking tour on the Rainbow Bridge.

shop, where owner/proprietor
Osamu Onda Satomi
explained how each lantern
was made, and instructed
group members how to make
their own. Great fun.

The incredible Tokyo Sky
Tree construction sight is
Japan's newest attempt to
"wow" the world. On comple-
tion, the tower will be the
tallest man-made structure in
Japan, set to rise 2,080 feet,
dwarfing the Tokyo Tower.
The new tower will be used to

look like a beer glass with an
adjacent big golden object.
On our final day in Japan,
we toured the Tsukiji

Market to witness the world-
famous fish auctions. What a
surprise. If it moves in the sea
and is known to man, it is sold
for consumption. The market
sells some 20 million tons of
fish daily and employs over
The sight of fresh seafood,
plus the busy atmosphere of
scooters, trucks, sellers and
buyers, make Tsukiji Market
one of Tokyo's major tourist
Everywhere that I went in
Japan, I was made to feel wel-
come. The country, with her

Maya San and Peter San standing in front of the Sky Tower, the new symbol of Japan.

transmit digital signals
throughout Japan.
We then headed for the
Asahi Beer Tower and Asahi
Super Dry Hall with its char-
acteristic Flamme d'Or. It was
completed in 1989 and hosts
the headquarters of Asahi
Breweries. Several restaurants
are in the complex. This land-
mark building is designed to

old and her new, awaits you.

Story and photographs by
Peter A. Webley, publisher of
Caribbean Today.

Edwin Al also contributed
to this story.


Christopher Wright,
left, Jamaica Tourist
Board's business .4
development manager
for Florida, Alabama, , ,. i
Mississippi and.
Louisiana, was pres-
ent to greet the
JetBlue flight team at
the Orlando
International Airport i. i
last month before the
start of service from -
that gateway to
Montego Bay,




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