Guyanese should speak out
Stabroek News
April 1, 2002

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Dear Editor,

I am an overseas based Guyanese who is in constant contact with news and other things of interest coming out of Guyana.

During the past two weeks I was disgusted to learn of the treatment of one of my fellow Guyanese at the hands of the Barbados police. This is however only one of the many unreported incidents of abuse that we as a people have had to endure because of our country's current state of economic depression and the continued negative light in which all Guyanese are viewed abroad. Almost ever day I hear horror stories just like this. The frustrating thing though is our lack of collective response. Discrimination is never stopped by simply ignoring it and hoping it will go away. Martin Luther King died for what he believed was right and just. The burning question is what are we willing to do for our rights, both at home and abroad?

I personally find very disturbing the recent escalation of the incidence of abuse, mistreatment and marginalisation of Guyanese not only by other CARICOM nationals but also by other CARICOM governments, institutions and businesses.

Pardon me! but isn't the wider CARICOM community moving towards the implementation of free movement of skilled CARICOM nationals?

I think that it is time we Guyanese begin to speak out. Our fellow CARICOM member states have got to know that Guyanese are not second class CARICOM citizens and we will not put up with their constant rudeness and other distasteful conduct towards us.

Isn't our Foreign Affairs Ministry functional? How can things like these happen and there is no response from our Government? Or are we so accustomed to being treated as the scum of the earth that we now believe that we don't deserve any better?

I call on you as a medium that reaches a wide audience to lead the charge for change. I also call on all Guyanese at home and all around the world to make a stance. If it means boycotting these countries and their exports so be it.

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Guyanese

(Name and address provided)