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Belize Tourism Board hosts stakeholder meeting in San Pedro to discuss tourism safety

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Posted: Wednesday, May 19, 2021. 10:53 am CST.

By Benjamin Flowers: This week, the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) gathered a number of tourism stakeholders and community members in San Pedro, for a meeting on tourism safety.

The Chairman of the BTB’s Board of Directors, Evan Tillett, convened the meeting, which was held at the San Pedro Town Council’s conference room, on Tuesday evening.

Present at the meeting were Kareem Musa, Minister of Home Affairs and New Growth Industries; Andre Perez, Minister of the Blue Economy and Civil Aviation; Mr. Wally Nunez, Mayor of San Pedro Town; Mr. Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police; Dr Richard Rosado, Assistant Commissioner of Police; Superintendent Christopher Noble, Commander of Region Four; Mr. Basil Reyes Assistant Superintendent of Police; and Alison McLaughlin, Commander of the Tourism Police Unit.

“The primary objective of the meeting was to collaborate on creating a balanced approach to policing in order to ensure that while safety remains the number one priority, the vacation experience of visitors is not compromised,” the BTB explained.

The meeting was held at a critical time in the tourism industry, where global travel is slowly resuming and safety has been given a new emphasis as tourists choose destinations they will visit. The meeting also follows an incident last week, in which a San Pedro police officer pulled a gun on a young man, who happened to be the brother of a popular Belizean Instagram personality, Joyjah Estrada.

The incident garnered national and international attention following a post she made, in which she could be heard screaming and pleading with the officer not to hurt her brother. Commissioner of Police Chester Williams said on Monday that the incident is being reviewed by the Professional Standards Branch and that the outcome of the investigation will determine what action if any is taken against the officer.

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