Striking A Balance: The Issue of Mandatory Vaccination

The Covid-19 pandemic has thus far defied resolution despite the availability of vaccines since December 2020 on an emergency authorized use basis
This leaves tens of millions of unvaccinated persons in high-income, vaccine-available countries as well as hundreds of millions more in low-income, vaccine-scarce countries as fertile pools for the spread of the coronavirus and the appearance of new variants.

The issue of mandatory vaccination in the region requires striking a delicate balance to avoid socio political fallout. Dr. Terrence Farrell addresses the issue.


Regional Perspectives on COVID Relief in the Caribbean

Expert Analyses

An unprecedented collaboration led by the Media Institute of the Caribbean has brought together leading Caribbean journalists, researchers, and development experts in a project to monitor government expenditure of external financing of pandemic efforts in 14 countries of the region.  The project will produce regular reporting on governmental best practice in the areas of procurement processes, and efficiencies, transparency, and accountability in the state sector. This special section gives regional perspectives on some of the key findings.


How COVID-19 has Reshaped Education in Guyana’s Hinterland

It’s Monday morning at the indigenous village of Aishalton, in Guyana’s Deep South Rupununi region.   39-year-old Immaculata Casimero proudly dons a shawl that identifies her Wapichan heritage. 

She’s in a rush, but makes sure to pull her mask across her face ahead of the  15 minute trek across the savannah to her daughter Kiarra’s primary school. COVID-19 has changed just about everything in her village, including her daughter’s education.  Pandemic lockdowns forced an end to normal classes. Students now work from home with parents filling the roles of teachers as best they can. Immaculata describes how, on selected days  of each week, she visits her daughter’s class teacher for guidance on four core subjects: English, Mathematics, Social Studies and Science.  “Parents have to work with their children at home and try to see how best they can educate their children,” she noted.  

She said the situation requires the parent to refresh their own knowledge of the subjects.  First, the teacher guides and instructs the parent through the entire lesson.


Agriculture under the shadow of La Soufrière

A CIJN Special Report

On April 9, 2021, at exactly 8.41 a.m., St Vincent and the Grenadines entered a period in its history its population had hoped would never again occur – almost 42 years to the day since an April 13, 1979 event of similar magnitude, and over 100 years after the 1902 eruption of La Soufrière volcano that killed close to 1,700 people. La Soufrière is a conical volcano forming the highest peak in the northern third of the main island of St Vincent which covers 133 square miles with a population of around 110,000. The volcano has had five significant eruptions in 1718, 1812, 1902, 1979, and 2021. At the time of the most recent explosive events, the country had established itself as a sub-regional leader in the production of root crops and tubers, fruits, and vegetables, supplying nearby territories with regular shipments that earned significant national revenue. It had also considered a vibrant future in the cannabis industry with the establishment of a Medicinal Cannabis Authority.


The Caribbean’s Pandemic Pyramids and Ponzis

Even as Caribbean authorities wrestle with the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, legislators have been scrambling to formulate appropriate responses to an accompanying growth in unlawful pyramid and Ponzi schemes marketed as financial solutions to the impact of restrictive pandemic measures.


CIJN Exclusive: Juan Guaido Interview

Venezuela’s Juan Guaido broke a two-year moratorium on interviews from Caracas with all media outlets. On August 13, 2020 Juan Guaido gave his first interview to CIJN from an undisclosed location in Caracas, Venezuela.

During the 40-minute interview, Mr. Guaido addressed the obstacles ahead for a transition to democracy, amidst the country’s economic collapse and a pandemic that has redefined the stage.

“It’s been two years now that I haven’t been allowed to go on television, not even radio, because they shut down the radio! Those spaces are important to communicate.” Guaido exclaimed.