Wed | Jan 23, 2019

LETTER OF THE DAY: Of horse dung and negligence

Published:Thursday | September 24, 2015 | 12:00 AM


It is seen every day of the year by tourists and locals in Negril. A horse, defecating on our beautiful beach. Then, the handler of the horse digs a shallow hole in the sand and pushes the horse dung into the hole. This happens right at the water's edge all along the Negril beach where the gentle waves slowly roll over the hole to uncover the fresh dung. This is the same water's edge that children play in, building sand castles. Often, they end up playing in fresh horse dung.

Horseback riding on the beach in Negril is illegal. Yet each day the horses are ridden directly in front of the Negril police station, continue across the Negril bridge, and walk onto the beach.

A photo of a horse defecating on the beach was sent to me by an irate guest who has been visiting our hotel for more than 10 years. He now vows never to return to Jamaica. In his email he asked me two questions. 1) Why does the Negril hotel community allow horses on the beach when we know that the horses will use the beach as a toilet? 2) Why would tourists spend money to come to Negril when they can go to other islands that have more concern about the health and safety of their visitors? Excellent questions.

The minister of tourism is also a medical doctor. So, I pose the same questions to him. Why is this activity allowed?

There are many problems in Negril, some easy to fix, some not so easy. This is an easy problem to fix. It only requires the will of government officials to do the right thing.

Michael Russell


White Sands Negril