'Come to Jamaica,' says NYPD deputy commissioner – Jamaica Gleaner

A Deputy Commissioner in the New York Police Department, Tarik Sheppard, has pushed back against the recent travel advisory from the US State Department and has asserted that it is very safe for Americans and other tourists to visit Jamaica.
Deputy Commissioner Sheppard, who is in the NYPD Public Information Department, said that perception is everything, and the perception being given by the travel advisory is that it is unsafe for tourists to visit Jamaica.
“Come to Jamaica for your visit. It is very safe here,” he said.
Deputy Commissioner Sheppard, who is leading an NYPD delegation to Jamaica for talks with the Police High Command, made his remarks on a Zoom meeting with members of the press, while sitting alongside Jamaica’s Police Commissioner Major Anthony Anderson.
Deputy Commissioner Sheppard said that the level three travel advisory has the potential to turn off visitors to the island.
Sheppard said that his message to Americans and other visitors, including Jamaicans in New York, is that there is no reason to fear coming to Jamaica for a visit.
“Everything that I have seen and from my discussions with the Jamaican Police High Command, it is very safe to visit Jamaica,” he said.
The level three travel advisory warning US visitors to reconsider travelling to Jamaica painted a picture of Jamaica as a country where violent crimes are rampant, sexual assault of tourists occur frequently and the country’s health care infrastructure is lacking. It also listed sections of the island where it said visitors should not travel.
According to Sheppard, the advisory is akin to saying that because there was a homicide in East New York persons should not visit Times Square.
Police Commissioner Anderson said that the travel advisory was a surprise as crime in Jamaica is trending down.
“It came out of left field,” he said.
Jamaican officials, government and tourism, have been pushing back against the travel advisory since it was posted.
– Lester Hinds
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