In the past year or so, several of the larger commercial banks in the United States such as JP Morgan Chase and the Bank of America cut ties with counterpart institutions in the Caribbean, blaming increased pressure from federal regulators and higher costs to monitor the legitimacy of transactions from the region as reasons. It was easier to simply sever ties as they have done. Comment
Pressure of developed countries on other states to tighten their financial laws and regulations to fight money-laundering is yielding unintended victims, such as charities and legal gambling outfits in Barbados that are now crying foul. Comment
Brooklyn Council Member Jumaane Williams on May 9 delivered his State of the District Address and formally announced his re-election campaign at Andries Hudde Junior High School in Brooklyn. Comment
The carnival festivities are almost here.
The newly created Brooklyn-based carnival band StronJeh International debuted the launch of their band with a carnival preview at the Floyd Bennett Legion Campus in Mill Basin on May 19. The band’s “Party on the Parkway” event showed off the new styles they have in store for the West Indian American Day parade in September and what they could create together, said the organizer. Comment
Brooklyn Council Member Jumaane D. Williams, Deputy Leader, Council Member Brad Lander, and Assembly Member Rodneyse Bichotte on May 17 hosted the Haitian Flag Day celebration at Shapeshifter Lab. Comment
Arts & Theater:
The painful tale we all know.
A new thought-provoking play documenting the horrors of police brutality and vigilantism is debuting at the National Black Theatre starting on May 31. “Kill Move Paradise” is a story that follows four men who meet the fate of extra-judicial or vigilante violence, mirroring major headlines following the deaths of black men. The play is a timely reminder of what is continually happening and sheds light on the aftermath, said the playwright. Comment
Former St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ Deputy New York Consul General and calypsonian Cyril “Scorcher” Thomas Saturday night received the “Special Recognition Award” from the Brooklyn-based St. Vincent and the Grenadines Ex-Police Association, U.S.A., Inc. at a gala banquet at Glen Terrace in Brooklyn. Comment
West Indies captain Jason Holder has defended fast bowler Shannon Gabriel’s reckless batting in the penultimate over which resulted in a series defeat to Pakistan on the final day of the decisive Third Test in Dominica last week. Comment
Robin Guittard is a campaigner on the Caribbean at Amnesty International
MEXICO CITY, May 23 2017 (IPS) - Three years ago today, authorities in the Dominican Republic passed a law seeking to address a statelessness crisis that has effectively stripped thousands of people off their Dominican nationality and with it, denied them a range of human rights. Comment
Legendary former fast bowler, Sir Curtly Ambrose is advising the West Indies team to put aside the disappointment of missing out on next month’s ICC Champion Trophy and concentrate on returning to the top of the world. Comment
Embattled West Indies will be seeking to boost its qualification fortunes for the 2019 World Cup when the team meets with powerhouse India in a five-match series starting in the Caribbean next month. Comment
Barbados and Canada have signed a new air transport agreement to give aircraft “the flexibility to operate without directional or geographical limitations.” Comment
Sen. Roxanne J. Persaud, while thanking members of the Guyana Action Committee (GAC) for honoring her, said politicians shouldn’t be given awards for doing community work. “Our job is to enrich the lives of people who we work for.” Comment
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) _ In a dining room in a wealthy district in the hills above Haiti’s capital, waiters in black outfits whisk plates of crunchy malanga fritters and a creamy cornmeal dish to well-off locals and tourists. In the kitchen, the chef ladles glistening, fresh conch into a pot as his staff dice tomatoes and watercress. Comment
A Harlem-based youth organization raised more than $1 million at an honorary gala in Midtown on May 12. Many recognizable actors and artists were in attendance at The Brotherhood / Sisterhood Sol 13th annual gala, including actor Jeffrey Wright and Carrie Mae Weems, who were awarded at the event for supporting the organization’s mission and raising the money, said the group’s executive director. Comment
SenatorKevin Parker’s Woman of Distinction is a fitting tribute to Guyanese-born Sherif Fraser, district manager of Brooklyn Community Board 17 in the 21st Senate District, who has dedicated her life to community service since migrating of the United States in 1982. Comment
96 Souls (Unrated) Sci-fi thriller about a research scientist who, after a lab accident, discovers he’s able to read people’s minds. With Sid Veda, Paul Statman and Toyin Moses. Comment
President Donald Trump will have one less issue to contend with when he sells a property he owns on the Caribbean island of St. Martin. Comment
It’s Maddy Whittier’s (Amandla Stenburg) 18th birthday, but she won’t be celebrating the occasion at a party or restaurant. In fact, she won’t be leaving the house or even having friends over anytime soon. Comment
Trinidad and Tobago:
The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) is seeking to strengthen its relationship with Emirates Holidays, the largest tour operator in the Middle East, as it seeks to broad the Caribbean’s appeal in the Arabia Market. Comment
The cultural creatures are reawakening.
The third annual Bankra Caribbean Folk Festival returns to Queens on June 3 for a celebratory homage to the folk history of the region. Next month the rapidly growing event will feature something new for guests and will introduce puppet-sculptures of the mythical Caribbean characters to life with a display of them, said the festival organizer. Comment
It’s the second year in a row when mixologist Vincentian Sylvanus Johnson will compete in the June finals of Caribbean Week New York’s Mixologist of the Year. Comment
Two Guyanese opposition lawmakers are among six former high ranking officials charged as the week ended with misappropriating hundreds of millions of dollars from a special fund linked to Venezuela’s PetroCaribe concession oil agreement with Caribbean trade bloc countries and Guyana in which rice was bartered for oil. Comment
He got more.
There was a time in your life when just noticing that was reason to throw a tantrum. It was enough to make any adult near you want to run away. But now that you’re all grown up, “He got more” means more — and in the new book “The Broken Ladder” by Keith Payne, you’ll see how it might affect your life. Comment
Acting Brooklyn District Attorney, Eric Gonzalez told Guyanese nationals that they should be treated with respect, dignity, and fairness in the justice criminal system. Comment
The 15-nation Caribbean trade bloc is undertaking a complete review of its import taxes regime into the regional free market including poultry and agriculture products from the United States in the wake of a plethora of requests from governments and the private sector to periodically suspend tariffs to correct shortages of items in various member states. Comment
The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) is urging Caribbean countries to tax tobacco, alcohol and sugar-sweetened beverages, saying that the taxes can help reduce consumption of these products and generate income that can be used to improve the health of the Caribbean population. Comment
As the proud Mayor of one of the largest Haitian communities in the United States, I am once again calling on the Department of Homeland Security to extend Temporary Protected Status to Haiti. Comment
Au-revoir, he is France-bound!
Trinidadian actor and filmmaker Paul Pryce is heading to the 70th Annual Cannes Film Festival in France this weekend. His debut short film “Come Out, Come Out,” will have its world premiere at the festival’s short film corner — a non-competitive film screening at the event. Comment
Caribbean foreign ministers meeting for two days in Barbados from Thursday are to examine why countries did not vote as a bloc at the Organization of American States (OAS) to support or reject proddings from the United States for regime change in Venezuela and at least one prime minister has formally complained about the unusual breakdown of voting unity officials said this week. Comment
Mayor Bill de Blasio has signed six bills that are a part of the Construction Safety Act, including two bills sponsored by Brooklyn Council Member Jumaane D. Williams, deputy leader, and chair of the Committee on Housing and Buildings. Comment
Barbados’ elections are due next year but the barbs thrown across the political divide could make an observer believe that the poll is next month so politicians are hurling their final besmirching or threatening remarks at opponents. Comment
At least three Caribbean American legislators have paid tribute to mothers on Mother’s Day, saying that, for generations, mothers have “selflessly supported their children and families.” Comment
“Freelancers have their rights starting today,” said Department of Consumer Affairs Commissioner Lorelei Salas to the freelancers celebrating the historic payment protection law that went into effect May 15. Comment
Jomo Kwame Sundaram is a former economics professor who served as a senior UN official during 2005-2015. Tan Zhai Gen is an University of Oxford biochemistry graduate currently involved in research. Both are Malaysians.
KUALA LUMPUR , May 16 2017 (IPS) - Advocates of genetically engineered (GE) crops have long claimed that genetic engineering is necessary to raise crop yields and reduce human exposure to agrochemicals. Comment
She’s coming back home.
Singer and songwriter Lydia Caesar is opening a concert at Milk River on May 18. The Missouri-based artist, originally from Queens, is set to debut songs from her forthcoming album “Queen of Hearts,” in her first solo show in the city. The artist is going to perform a few of her well-known songs like “St. Louis” and “Through it All,” and some new ones, she said. Comment
For all the concerns raised by economists and others about the House tax plan, it is generally assumed that the proposal will reduce the gaming of the tax system by multinational corporations. Among the more active debates: Will the currency adjust perfectly or will retail prices rise? Is the plan legal under our trade agreements? Do foreign investments take a dive? Comment
Once again, it was out with the old, in with the new.
The Brooklyn Bar Association unveiled its newest leadership roster May 5 at its annual meeting in Brooklyn Heights, bidding farewell to outgoing president Frank Seddio and welcoming his successor, Aimee Richter. Comment