Stand Up for Jamaica, a dedicated human rights group committed to advocating for
the rights of all citizens, unequivocally rejects recent statements made by the Minister with responsibility for information, Robert Morgan, during the Dionne Jackson program.
The comments, perceived as uncomfortable and baseless, represent an unprecedented attack on organizations like Jamaicans For Justice and human rights groups in general, inaccurately portraying them as defenders of criminals rather than champions of victims.
The Executive Director of Stand Up for Jamaica, Carla Gullotta, asserts that Minister
Morgan's statements appear to criminalize not only the organizations but also the
crucial human rights activities they undertake. These activities are designed to
safeguard the rights of every individual, including Minister Morgan himself, should
the need arise. Of particular concern to Stand Up for Jamaica is the timing of these accusations, coinciding with a critical juncture where principles such as access to information and transparency face challenges.
Recent governmental decisions impacting agencies like the Integrity Commission undermine the public's right to know. Simultaneously, the government is implementing stricter penalties, including mandatory sentences of up to 20 years for children, in an attempt to address rising crime rates.
However, these measures fail to address the root causes of crime, diverting attention from
Stand Up for Jamaica emphasizes the need for a holistic approach to crime
prevention and expresses disappointment in the current focus on punitive measures.
Instead of addressing the root causes, significant resources are directed towards
intensifying penalties. The organization contends that this approach lacks efficacy and
underscores the importance of involving all stakeholders—civil society, private sector,
and government—in a collaborative effort to prevent crime.
In the face of recent criticism, Stand Up for Jamaica remains steadfast in its
commitment to defending victims of crime. The organization serves as the guardian
for countless voiceless individuals, including women, children, the homeless, and the
As a human rights group lobbying for universally guaranteed rights,
Stand Up for Jamaica stands united in advocating for the protection and well-being
of all citizens.