The price of crime
Published: Sep 12, 2013
I think it’s safe to say that crime is one of the most talked about subjects on the tongues of many Bahamians as the rate of crime in the country – more specifically the capital – seems to be spiraling out of control.
On any given day, the headlines lead with the latest homicides, shootings or home invasions that in the long run leave devastating effects on loved ones and families left to mourn. This attack of violence goes on relentlessly.
Every day, there seems to be something new; just recently Carnival cruise lines issued a crime warning advising passengers not to travel with large amounts of cash when they disembark in Nassau. While travel advisories are not uncommon, the perspective it gives to visitors is not a favorable one for the country.
All of this spells bad news for business owners who are already faced with a downturn in business, and the impact of crime and fear of crime that has a trickle-down effect on not only the tourism product, but business development as a whole.
Investors remain well abreast of what is happening in countries in which they intend to invest and The Bahamas is no different. All information relative to crime or crime statistics is published online and therefore is accessed by anyone who has the Internet. Most out-of-country clients I come in contact with who are looking for a residence on a short or long-term basis prefer to be located in a gated-community.
Further, it’s easy to see why; potential purchasers are seeking out gated communities, which offer a level of security, rather than a stand-alone home with little security and access open to the public.
This is a temporary fix as we can’t be prisoners in our homes unable to attend social outings, visit restaurants or enjoy social interactions planned with our friends at their homes, without the fear of being a victim of crime foremost in our minds.
We all need to pool our ideas to tackle this crime problem and have ourselves personally commit to being law-abiding citizens; for starters, not running red lights, and wearing our seatbelts.
This is home for us all and if we don’t try to curb this crime spiral in some way, there won’t be any potential investors for the real estate market, businesses will close down and this destination will suffer.
• William Wong is president of Wong and Associates Realty. He was also a two-term president of The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and The Bahamas Real Estate Association. Questions or comments can be emailed to William@wongsrealty.com.