MONTEGO BAY, St. James; January 7, 2019: Tourism Minister Hon. Edmund Bartlett has reiterated Jamaica's commitment to creating a new way forward and architecture as it relates to visitor safety and security. This follows a meeting with international tourism security expert, Dr. Peter Tarlow, Minister of National Security, Hon Dr. Horace Chang and senior members of the Ministry of Tourism and its agencies.
"This exercise of reviewing our security arrangements with a view to improving our infrastructure is not a knee jerk reaction because the whole business of safety and security is fundamental to tourism,
Safety, security and seamlessness underpin the sense of well-being of visitors crossing borders. It is a feeling that must pervade the traveler before they even leave their destination and therefore it is the responsibility of the destination that the well-being of visitors are secure," said Minister Bartlett.
Dr. Peter Tarlow is currently in the island to provide technical support for the island wide security audit being carried out by the Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo). The security audit, which is to be completed by the first half of 2019, will identify gaps and ensure that the destination remains safe, secure and seamless for visitors and locals alike.
As part of Dr. Tarlow's engagement, he met with and made a presentation to hotel general managers; security professionals; contractors to the industry and the police high command during a Tourism Safety and Security Forum held at the Montego Bay Convention Centre today.
Tomorrow, Dr. Tarlow will join a briefing with the security operations audit team; meet with embassy officials from the United States, United Kingdom and Canada; and take part in a media briefing to be held inside TPDCo's boardroom at their New Kingston office.
Minister of National Security, Hon Dr. Horace Chang said, "The Jamaica Constabulary Force has placed as part of its priority, public safety, as the visitors themselves will benefit from public safety and security. We are also in the process of strengthening all areas of the police force so that they can not only ensure our citizens of their safety in various communities but provide them with the capacity to expand their capabilities."
Dr. Tarlow highlighted that tourism security is really, "Tourism surety, which includes taking care of visitors; taking care of workers in the industry; taking care of attractions or sites; taking care of the economics and taking care of your reputation."
In pointing out the importance of the overall exercise, Minister Bartlett added that, "Jamaica has done an excellent job over the years, and we in comparative terms are on top of the scale of safe and secure destinations across the world. Our effort to re-examine our process and reinvent ourselves is part of maintaining that position of prominence in this area across the globe."
Tourism Security Audit 1- Minister of Tourism, Honourable Edmund Bartlett (R) in discussion with Minister of National Security, Hon Dr. Horace Chang (L) and Dr. Peter Tarlow, International Tourism Security expert. The occasion was the initial briefing with Dr. Tarlow and senior members of the Ministry of Tourism and its agencies, held at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, regarding the island wide security audit of the sector. The security audit is being carried out by the Tourism Product Development Company.
Ministry of Tourism, Jamaica